LAKE HARTWELL — About 458,000 striped bass were stocked in Lake Hartwell by the S.C. Department of Natural Resources May 29-30, including a stocking at Twin Lakes Recreation Area near the Pickens County/Anderson County line.
“Spending time fishing is quality family time,” said state Rep. Davey Hiott of the Pickens County Legislative Delegation at the May 30 Twin Lakes stocking. “The people in this region can easily drive to Twin Lakes, and it’s a great bank-fishing area, or they can launch a boat at the boat landing and fish in many different areas of Lake Hartwell. These are wonderful amenities for the people of the area, and the entire state, to enjoy. Improving fishing in a beautiful place like Lake Hartwell is putting something back for our children and grandchildren.”
The S.C. Department of Natural Resources (DNR) used specially equipped fish hauling trucks to stock about 458,000 striped bass fingerlings in Lake Hartwell during a two-day period, including stockings at Broyles Landing in Anderson County, at Twin Lakes, and at Twelve Mile Landing in Pickens County.
The fish were produced at the Dennis Wildlife Center Fish Hatchery in Bonneau, and these fingerlings will grow to a catchable size by spring 2016.
The Georgia Department of Natural Resources, in partnership with South Carolina DNR, recently stocked the Tugaloo River arm of Lake Hartwell with 240,247 striped bass, with the potential of more fish to come.
The Georgia and South Carolina natural resources agencies have also stocked hybrid bass in Lake Hartwell, with Georgia contributing 169,747 hybrid bass and South Carolina stocking 230,000 fish thus far this season.
“Striped and hybrid bass are schooling fish, and this can result in fast action when you’re fishing for them,” said Dan Rankin, DNR regional fisheries biologist based in Clemson. “They are really aggressive fighters, so it can be an exciting fish to catch. And it’s not uncommon to catch striped bass larger than 20 pounds and hybrid bass in the 3- to 10-pound range.”
The South Carolina DNR Freshwater Fisheries Section annually stocks from seven to 10 million fish in state waters, including striped and hybrid bass, largemouth and smallmouth bass, channel and blue catfish, bluegill, redbreast, redear sunfish (shellcracker), and rainbow, brook, and brown trout. Anglers in South Carolina spend almost $742 million to fish each year, making the sport, with economic multipliers factored in, a billion dollar business in the Palmetto State.