Western Branch, Briery Creek, Gatewood, and Pelham rank at the top for largemouth bass populations in Virginia’s four regions, according to recent electrofishing surveys.
“Those lakes ranked at the top will provide excellent opportunities for anglers to catch quality largemouth bass,” said Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (VDGIF).
The agency cautioned, however, that “some of the large reservoirs are ranked lower than you might expect. Smaller reservoirs normally have higher sampling efficiency and will thus rank higher based on this evaluation.”
VDGIF based its rankings on the number of bass 15 inches and longer that biologists collected during one hour, as well as relative stock density, which is the proportion of bass in a population over 8 inches that are also at least 15 inches.
In Region I, Chesdin, Gardy’s Millpond, Prince, and Chickahominy Lake join Western Branch as the best, while Lake Burton, Smith Mountain, Conner, and Fairystone join Briery Creek in Region II.
For Region III, North Fork Pound Reservoir, Lake Whitten, Rural Retreat, and South Holston rank behind Gatewood, while Germantown, Occoquan, Burke, and Frederick follow Pelham in Region IV.