Until recently, I didn’t know that white bass were native to the Northeast. I’d always thought of them as a southern or midwestern fish species, until on the Niagara River, I overheard someone talking about catching “silver bass,” the regional name for white bass.
White bass are a small relative of the striped bass and white perch – they are the species crossed with stripers to create the hybrid striped bass stocked in a few New Jersey and Pennsylvania waters.
While they have a decent population in the Great Lakes and Niagara River, they aren’t a very popular target species, but Morgan Fonzi was out seeking a record white bass in early May.
On May 4, Morgan’s dad, Joe, caught and released a very large white bass that they later discovered would have been a new state record. So they set out the following day with the goal of catching another big one, and Morgan did just that, landing a 3-pound, 8-ounce white bass, a full two ounces heavier than the previous record, but, according to the New York Department of Environmental Conservation, not as big the fish Joe Fonzi had previously released.