Upgrades to Marion Fish Hatchery Will Increase Bass Population

Contact Damon Abernethy, 334-242-3882
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’ Wildlife & Freshwater Fisheries Division (WFF) was awarded a $10,500 grant to enhance Marion Fish Hatchery where all of the state’s Florida strain largemouth bass are reared for public water stocking. The grant was received after the FLW Tour Championship held on Lake Logan Martin in August 2006. The grant, administered by the FishAmerica Foundation, was funded by FLW Outdoors, the Wal-Mart/FLW Tournament Trail, BP Lubricants USA, and The National Guard.     
WFF Fisheries Development Coordinator Damon Abernethy said, “Our Division appreciates the generosity of these donors. The grant allowed us to make much needed improvements at one of our important research hatcheries and in time will benefit Alabama’s many bass anglers.”

The funding was used to replace an electronic bass fry counter which ensures that the optimum number of fry is stocked into each grow-out pond, and to replace outdated aeration systems which are crucial to maintain maximum growth and survival of the fry and fingerlings.

As a result of these upgrades, Lake Logan Martin was stocked with over 390,000 Florida strain largemouth bass during May 2007 and WFF intends to stock at least 350,000 more into the lake during each of the next three years. WFF projections indicate that about 1.5 million Florida largemouth bass will be introduced into Lake Logan Martin during this stocking cycle. Genetic testing will be used to evaluate the success of the stocking to determine whether the Florida gene persists in the population.
The Marion Fish Hatchery is located in Perry County near Marion, Alabama. This hatchery produces Florida largemouth bass, bluegill, redear sunfish (shellcracker), striped bass, hybrid striped bass, channel catfish, grass carp, southern strain walleye and forage fish.
WFF manages a wide range of fishery resources throughout the state. Stocking hatchery-produced fish into selected fisheries is beneficial in specific cases for managing the quality and diversity of the fishing opportunities provided to Alabama anglers. In a typical year, the Alabama state fish hatcheries will produce about 2.5 million fish for stocking into public waters.
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s natural resources through five divisions: Marine Police, Marine Resources, State Parks, State Lands, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. To learn more about ADCNR, visit www.OutdoorAlabama.com.