Fish Texas – February 2023

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On Your Mark, Get Set for the White Bass Run

happy girl holding white bass, video link

If you're new to angling in Texas, one of our favorite traditions is fishing the white bass run from January to May – it's a world-class experience for anglers of all ages and skill levels. Get started with our video White Bass Fishing Basics

We've put together a list of locations where you'll find white bass. We also offer river access on private property through our river lease access program

Bring a big ice chest, because you'll likely catch the daily bag limit of 25 – minimum length is 10". Exactly when the run starts in earnest depends on the weather, but we have a saying, "If the redbuds are blooming, the white bass are running."

Find lure suggestions and more in our press release Annual White Bass Run is Quickly Approaching. Then see how one family works the run in our video Fun on the Run.

Lakes Giving Up Legacy Lunkers Left and Right

Yah-Tsheng Moua holds13.05 Lunker from OH Ivie, video link

Legacy Lunker season is here, and the big fish are rolling in. Eleven Legacy Class Lunkers have been submitted to the program this season – so far. Read about the latest catch in our press release O.H. Ivie Still Full Speed Ahead with 9th Legacy Lunker.

Jan. through March is Legacy season, and anglers who reel in a 13+ lb. bass can loan it to us for the ShareLunker breeding and stocking program. Call the hotline at (903) 681-0550 to report your catch.

Anglers who enter a Lunker (greater than 8 lbs. or 24") receive a catch kit, decal for their vehicle, and an entry into the Grand Prize drawing to win a $5,000 Bass Pro Shops shopping spree and annual fishing license.

Check out our free online class, Spring Bass Fishing in Texas on Feb. 28, for tips and tricks to improve your black bass game. 

NEW for the 2023 season: Legend Class ShareLunkers no longer need to be weighed on a certified scale for entry. You only need to include a photo of your Lunker on a digital scale to qualify for Legend Class.

Check out the category descriptions for more on the different classes of ShareLunkers. Then download the free ShareLunker app, pick a lake and get going!

Bass conservation license plate, with link

Do You Enjoy Nighttime Flounder Fishing?

4 guys gigging for flounder at night, video

In an effort to successfully manage flounder in Texas waters, we plan to study the nighttime flounder fishery in Matagorda, Aransas and San Antonio Bays during this harvest season.

A variety of methods will be used to capture information from flounder giggers and anglers, including nighttime creel surveys, nighttime trailer counts, and the opportunity for flounder enthusiasts to self-report their landings in Texas bay systems through the free My Texas Hunt Harvest app (MTHH).

To report your nighttime flounder catch using MTHH, go to "Fishing" and click "Flounder." You won't have to divulge your secret fishing spot, just information similar to our creel interview questions, such as the the number of flounder caught, the Texas bay system you fished and the date. Easy!

For more information, see our video Webinar for Upcoming Nighttime Flounder Study. Find out where the flounder are biting by subscribing to our free Saltwater Fishing Report

Your participation is important – help improve coastal fishing by reporting your nighttime flounder fishing harvest. 

NEW: Habitat Structures Viewer

Fish structures being distributed by boat, video link

We place fish habitat structures underwater to create sanctuaries for prey fish, providing them with food and shelter. Predator fish are then drawn to the structures, and anglers locate the structures to find concentrations of fish.

To locate habitat structures, try our NEW interactive Habitat Structure Viewer. With this new tool, you can:

  • Select a specific waterbody to view
  • Get the coordinates, structure type and year installed for each set of habitat structures
  • Download data files and shapefiles for the fish habitat structures
  • Zoom in and out
  • View the User Guide by clicking on "i" in the upper right corner of the map

For more about our fish habitat program, watch the video Building Fish Structure, Hands-on Habitat.

Wait! Don’t Dump Your Bait!

Carp and shad, to compare appearance

To keep your lakes healthy, it's important not to spread aquatic invasive species – which can happen when anglers dump live bait. 

Invasive carp can be spread this way. When silver and bighead carp are bait-sized, they're easily confused with native species, like shad (skipjack), when caught and kept as live bait.

Avoid spreading these carp and other non-native species by using your bait where you catch it, putting unused bait in the trash, or offering unused bait to another angler to use at the same lake. 


1. Never take any live-caught bait to another lake.

2. Never dump any leftover bait into the water. 

For more tips to help you stop the spread of aquatic invasives, read the short Texas Parks & Wildlife magazine story Don't Dump That Bait!

A  message from our non-profit partner Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation:

A Centennial Birthday Gift for Texas State Parks

Give back to the parks you love, with link

For 100 years, Texas State Parks have provided great fishing waters for anglers young and old – no license required!

In honor of this milestone, Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation is raising $2 million to fund much-needed projects for all state parks across Texas.

From courtesy docks to fish cleaning stations and so much more, these projects will allow our parks to continue delighting visitors for generations to come.

We’re not the only ones excited about this effort: A group of Centennial Champions are matching all gifts dollar-for-dollar!

Learn more and give back to the park closest to your heart! Donate today.

Your Input Is Requested

We would like your input on proposed Texas freshwater fishing regulation changes. The primary changes will focus on simplifying and clarifying fishing-related rules on waters within public parks. For more information, see our press release

Comment online at TPWD public comment until March 22. Your input will be considered before any action is taken by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission at its March 23 public hearing. 

Messages from Texas Parks & Wildlife magazine advertisers:

Angler with fish at Baytown, with link

Marine Max boat ad, with link

The Fish Texas newsletter is made possible in part
by the generous support of Toyota. 


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