Evaluating growth rates of two newly introduced populations of blue catfish in Kansas.
Fish were sampled using experimental gill nets, low frequency electrofishing, and float lines. Ages were assigned to a subset of captured fish by a panel of three independent readers examining a thin section cut from the articulating surface of a pectoral spine. Rapid growth was observed in Lovewell Reservoir with Blue Catfish reaching 659-mm by age 6. Growth of Blue Catfish was slower in Wilson Reservoir (552-mm by age 6) but comparable to other populations in the United States. Recruitment of stocked fish was variable but more consistent in Lovewell Reservoir. Year classes established by stockings that contained larger individuals at greater densities were more prevalent in both populations. These results demonstrate inconsistent recruitment patterns of Blue Catfish population development when stocked in large reservoirs.