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Advocacy Alert: Important Spotted Seatrout Update

By December 28, 2023 2021Freeze, Uncategorized

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) is seeking public comments on proposed coastwide Spotted Seatrout harvest regulation modifications.

Background

As you likely know, following the February 2021 freeze event, which impacted tens of thousands of Spotted Seatrout, emergency and temporary reduced harvest regulations were put into place in several bay systems with the goal of accelerating recovery of the popular game fish. The temporary regulations expired on Aug. 31, 2023, and former statewide bag and size limits were reinstated. After receiving an update from TPWD staff in November which included results from public scoping meetings, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission (TPWC) directed staff to publish a proposal (click here to read it) that seeks to change the bag and slot size for Spotted Seatrout as follows:

Change the bag limit from five fish to three fish per day and change the slot limit from 15-25 inches to 15-20 inches. One fish over 25 inches would be allowed to be kept per day and would count towards the three-fish bag. These regulations would go into effect coastwide.

CCA Texas’ Position

The CCA Texas Executive Board has voted to support the TPWD proposal to reduce the bag limit to a daily possession of 3-fish and to modify the slot limit to a 15-inch – 20-inch slot. CCA Texas recommends no allowance for oversized fish to be retained as a part of the 3-fish bag until a tag system for fish 25-inches or greater can be implemented by TPWD. Click here to read more.

Next Steps

There are a few different ways you can have your voice heard!

Online: TPWD is currently accepting public comments online. Click here to submit your comments by 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, January 24, 2024.

Zoom Webinar: Monday, Jan. 8, 6-8 p.m. | TPWD Coastal Fisheries staff will present proposed fishing regulation changes and answer questions in an online webinar. TPWD will also post the webinar on TPWD’s YouTube channel and Facebook page.

In-Person Public Hearings: TPWD Coastal Fisheries staff will host several meetings on the coast to receive public comments on the proposed regulation change, prior to the January 25, 2024 TPWC meeting.

  • Tuesday, Jan. 9, 6-8 p.m. at the Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi Natural Resources Building, 6300 Ocean Dr., Corpus Christi
  • Tuesday, Jan. 9, 6-8 p.m. at the Greater Chamber of Harlingen, 311 E. Tyler Ave., Harlingen
  • Tuesday, Jan. 9, 6-8 p.m. at the Bauer Exhibit Building, 305 Henry Barber Way, Port Lavaca
  • Tuesday, Jan. 9, 6-8 p.m. at the Saltwater Pavilion at Rockport Beach Park, 210 Seabreeze Dr., Rockport
  • Wednesday, Jan. 10, 6-8 p.m. at the Bob Bowers Civic Center, 3401 Cultural Center Dr., Port Arthur
  • Thursday, Jan. 11, 6-8 p.m. at the Nessler Civic Center Captain’s Room, 2010 5th Ave N., Texas City

Feel free to save the meeting schedule graphic below for your convenience!

We encourage anglers to view the information at a virtual or an in-person meeting and submit your comments online to TPWD.

We appreciate you taking the time to read this important update and thank you for your grassroots efforts to improve our fisheries.

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