Bass fishing often is a numbers game. By one analysis, Falls of the Neuse Lake may be North Carolina’s best bass lake.
The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission samples Falls of Neuse and Shearon Harris lakes for bass in odd-numbered years. They are scheduled for electroshock sampling this spring.
According to Kirk Rundle, a biologist with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission, 2015 electroshocking surveys turned up 100 bass per hour at Harris and 90 per hour at Falls.
Relative bass weights at Falls of Neuse were excellent, almost at a level that the Commission calls optimal.
“Falls Lake bass are eating good because there’s plenty of forage available,” Rundle said. “We caught many young fish, which indicates (they) are producing well.”
Rundle’s statistics indicated that 70 percent of bass in Falls of Neuse are longer than the 14-inch size minimum. A sub-sample revealed most bass were two to three years old.
“We also got quite a few age-8 fish, one 10 years old, and one 15-year-old (that) was 20 inches long,” he said. “It was only 5 pounds, but it could have been an anomaly — maybe had a hook it its gut and wasn’t eating well.”
Falls of Neuse bass grow quickly to 14 inches, then typically add a couple of inches per year.
“We also put threadfin shad in the lake after a winter kill a couple years ago,” he said. “We’re probably going to stock some threadfin fry this year because of winter kills all around.”