Fishing Heats Up in Fall Weather

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Fish Texas E-Newsletter

In this issue: Gear Up For the Toyota Texas Bass Classic October 28-30;  Fish Records - Does Your Catch Measure Up?; Saltwater Fishing On A Shoestring; TX/LA Combined Fishing Regs Calm East Texas Waters; Minnows Weather Drought at Hatchery; Tracking Tarpon; Why You Should Eat More Bass

Gear Up For The Toyota Texas Bass Classic Oct. 28-30

If there ever was a fishing tourney that earned bragging rights, this is it.  Fifty champion anglers, Texas’ biggest bass, and great country music (Billy Currington, Pat Green, Robert Earl Keen). Find out how to get free tickets and get all the latest event details at the TTBC website. Then cast off for a great weekend!

Fish Records - Does Your Catch Measure Up?

ShareLunker Winners  
So many Texas fish species, so many records to beat! Think you’ve got a winner? For immediate gratification any time anywhere, check your fish against current state records and learn how to report with our new mobile website for fishing records. You can view the full mobile site at which also includes fishing regulations, fishing reports and more. When you pack your fishing gear, take along a measuring tool and a camera. State and water body records are tracked for most Texas species. As always, you can also look up fish records on the traditional TPWD website.

You don’t have to set a record to be a winner. A new year of Toyota ShareLunker excitement kicked off October 1. If you land a 13-pound or greater largemouth bass, you could join dedicated anglers who loan their catch to the ShareLunker program to help grow great bass in Texas. To be sure you know how to keep a lunker alive and healthy, read this news release. Think you’ve landed a qualifying bass? Call program manager David Campbell at (903) 681-0550 or page him at (888) 784-0600. He’s keeping the light on.

Saltwater Fishing on a Shoestring

South Padre jetty  
Think saltwater fishing is a sport for the rich and famous? Think again. The Texas coast is brimming with saltwater angling opportunities that don’t require much time or money. And who needs a fancy boat when there are piers, jetties, beaches and bays, wading the bank, and even kayaking options? In fact about half of the fishing in Texas marine waters is done by land-based anglers. So what are you waiting for? Read "Saltwater on a Shoestring," a timeless story from Texas Parks & Wildlife magazine, to dip into the possibilities.

Where to go? Try the Beach and Bay Access Guide of the Texas General Land Office. And remember, if you fish from a pier or the shoreline within a Texas state park, a fishing license is not required. Park entrance fees still apply. Check out these coastal state parks: Sea Rim State Park, Galveston Island State Park, Goose Island State Park, and Mustang Island State Park.
A message from a Texas Parks & Wildlife magazine advertiser.
Port Aransas

TX/LA Combined Fishing Regs Calm East Texas Waters

East Texas Anglers  
Anglers along the Texas/Louisiana border now have more in common than a love of throwing a line in the water. Consolidated recreational fishing regulations (effective 9/1/11) for shared waters will make it much easier for anglers on both sides of the state line to keep track of bag and size limits. The compromise regulations for Toledo Bend affect channel, blue and flathead catfish and black and white crappie.

Regulations for Caddo Lake and the Sabine River deal with those species in addition to white, largemouth and spotted bass. Striped bass regulations in Sabine River have also changed. Read the regulation changes and find more detail in the news release.

Minnows Weather Drought at Hatchery

Lucky Minnows  
Two minnow species - smalleye shiner (Notropis buccula) and sharpnose shiner (Notropis oxyrhynchus) - will wait for rain in the safety of the Possum Kingdom Fish Hatchery. Found nowhere else in the world but the Brazos River system, these two minnows are a vital part of the ecosystem and serve as prey for game fish like catfish and largemouth bass. Already at risk of becoming endangered, they are now threatened by the deepening drought. Texas Parks and Wildlife biologists and partner agencies have implemented a long-standing protection plan to collect specimens for future restocking and possible relocation in case of disaster. Read the full news release.

Tracking Tarpon

Tarpon angler  
The elusive tarpon tantalizes both anglers and conservationists.  In “Catch Me If You Can,” David Sikes describes his first addictive tarpon encounter for Texas Parks & Wildlife magazine. In Texas, tarpon are most likely to be sighted in near-shore Gulf waters from August through October. Surf anglers and boaters fishing near Gulf passes have the best chance to sight this exciting game fish.

Anglers and boaters lucky enough to see or catch a tarpon are encouraged to report the encounter through the TPWD Tarpon Observation Network. Tarpon sightings and tarpon catches help determine how and when tarpon use Texas waters and help biologists meet their goal of increasing the tarpon population. Since May 2009, 33 tarpon observations representing 351 tarpon have been submitted, roughly doubling the amount of data about tarpon that TPWD had previously collected over 35 years of routine sampling.

Why You Should Eat More Bass

Alton Jones  
Anglers can improve their chances to catch a lunker by taking home some bass that are smaller than the slot. Taking smaller bass out of slot limit water bodies benefits future fishing because it increases food available for remaining fish, as described by pro angler Alton Jones in this video.

In a freshwater body with a slot limit, an angler must release any fish within the length range specified by the slot. For example if a particular lake has a bass slot limit of 14" - 21", bass caught in that range are returned to the water. Find out if your fishing destination has a slot limit here. Make use of the smaller bass resource. Alton says, “Take ‘em home and have a nice fish fry!”
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