striped bass identification

Stripers larger than 50 pounds (23 kilograms) have been landed in Texas

Striped Bass (Morone saxatilus) are an excellent sport-fish reaching large sizes. They’re known for their fighting ability and are members of the Seabass family.

You might have heard them referred to as the striper, rock, rockfish, striped sea bass, striper bass, linesider, squid hound and green head.

How to identify a Striped Bass

This is a large fish with a large mouth, yet it’s streamlined well. It has a long body and head with a somewhat laterally compressed body and a protruding lower jaw.

Of the 2 noticeably separate dorsal fins, the first one has 7 to 12 stiff spines, usually 9 make up this fin.

The second fin has 1 sharp spine with 8 to 14. There are normally 12.

See ‘Striped Bass features and size’ for complete description


Since the 1600’s Striped Bass fishing has been very popular and was considered the most popular fish in North America. To many it still is the most important fish. At first striped bass were known for their commercial significance and culinary quality. Now it’s known predominantly for recreation popularity with anglers.

  • The commercial fishing industry has morphed into a recreational bass fishing industry and is a large contributor to the economy when combined with other freshwater bass.
lake texoma

Striped Bass swim throughout a lake and are hard to track most times during the year, except in late spring (image: Lake Texoma)

In Texas alone, Striped Bass fishing in the Lake Texoma area brings in $20m a year to the Texas economy. This figure includes the ancillary services provided by lodges, guides, tackle and related tourism.


Their abundance has varied over the years. In California, Striped Bass have been classified as strictly recreational fishing and banned from commercial use. Following the cleanup of the Chesapeake Bay and the Hudson River, fortunately, they’ve rebounded from near endangered status. Striped Bass fishing is a lot of fun and an exciting experience and also makes excellent table fare.

Cooking with Striped Bass

If you’re interested in tasting Striped Bass, we’ve some excellent bass recipes in our resources. Click here to try some tasty, tried and tested recipes.

They can be prepared in many ways with the smaller fish being fried and larger ones baked.