Memorial Day Flood of 2015, Tax Day Flood of 2016 and late-May Floods of 2016. Two consecutive years of historic flooding were major setbacks for public oyster reefs and the oyster fishery in Texas. In fact, in June of 2016 Galveston County declared a state of disaster for the oyster industry. That was all before Hurricane Harvey, the largest flooding event in United States history. Sadly, much of Harvey’s rainfall was also within the Galveston Bay watershed.
The following is an article originally submitted in the July Edition of Texas Saltwater Fishing Magazine and updated for this blog.
On a crisp morning this past April, Jason McCartney, an avid kayak angler from Houston, was in pursuit of some speckled trout and redfish in the productive estuary near The Village of Tiki Island, adjacent to Interstate 45. The tide was extremely low, so while waiting for the water to move in, Jason decided to sit back, be present in the moment, and enjoy a peace of mind that can only be found while relaxing on the water.
The Eastern Oyster (Crassostrea virginica) is our most valuable coastal resource, providing critical habitat for fish and invertebrate species, shoreline stabilization, water quality enhancements and numerous other ecological functions. The compounding effects of increased fishing pressure in smaller areas, hurricanes, tropical storms, droughts, flood events and unscrupulous actions by some within the commercial oyster industry have resulted in unprecedented destruction and loss of our public oyster reefs. Texas Parks and Wildlife recognizes the value of oysters in our marine ecosystems and has proposed several changes to the statewide oyster proclamation. Here are just a few reasons why oysters are so valuable to our marine ecosystems. Feel free to click on the literature cited to further review the supportive documentation. Continue Reading
In this episode of the podcast, Shane talks with Kevin Burns and Urs Schmid about some proposals that Brazoria County is considering to protect the general public from the dangers of San Luis Pass waters. We also discuss Saltwater Recon and how it can be a great tool for fisherman, beach-goers, weather watchers, and travel plans to the Galveston area.
Texas public oyster reefs need your help. Since 2008 the public oyster reefs in Texas have been continuously overfished by the commercial oyster industry. We now have a unique opportunity to make significant changes and assist Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) in managing the commercial harvest of our public reefs to protect and conserve this important resource. TPWD has made several proposals regarding the future management of the oyster fishery, and it needs CCA’s support. Continue Reading
Recreational Fishermen Laud Wicker, Nelson and Colleagues
Washington, D.C. – July 10, 2017 – Today, the recreational fishing and boating community praised the Senate introduction of the Modern Fish Act by Senators Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Bill Nelson (D-Fla.), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), John Kennedy (R-La.) and Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.). The “Modernizing Recreational Fisheries Management Act of 2017” (Modern Fish Act) would improve public access to America’s federal waters, promote conservation of our natural marine resources and spur economic growth. A companion bill, H.R. 2023, was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives on April 6, by Congressmen Garret Graves (R-La.), Gene Green (D-Texas), Daniel Webster (R-Fla.) and Rob Wittman (R-Va.).
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Rebecca Louviere, CSP Communications Director
Originally posted on www.sportfishingpolicy.com
Washington, D.C. – June 28, 2017 – Today, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross announced the 2017 Regional Fishery Management Council (RFMC) appointments and has shown that recreational fishing and boating are important to the Trump Administration. The appointments of Steve Heins of New York to the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Chester Brewer of Florida to the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council; and Phil Dyskow of Florida, Dr. Bob Shipp of Alabama, and Dr. Greg Stunz of Texas to the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council are a solid affirmation that the Administration is taking federal fisheries management and conservation in the right direction.
In this episode we meet up with Matagorda Matt, Shawn Porche and Steve Brown, creator of the Broken-back Corky, the Bug Eye and various other quality lures. Other topics discussed include the Brown family tradition, fishing tournaments and K6 Island Sports in Jamaica Beach. Matt also gives us gives us some recent fishing reports.
The announcement today of action to extend the Gulf of Mexico recreational red snapper season is a welcome boon to anglers who have been painted into a corner by a federal fisheries management system that does not understand us, and would often just rather ignore us.
On the plus side, anglers are right to be encouraged by the willingness of this Administration and the Department of Commerce to improve recreational access to a historically robust Gulf of Mexico red snapper fishery. This alone is a tremendous achievement. Continue Reading
Wonder what Texas Parks and Wildlife is proposing to protect our public oyster reefs? Have a listen to this episode to find out!
Shane is a guest on the Moore Outdoors Radio Show (KLVI AM 560) and talks with Chester about efforts to protect our public oyster reefs. Chester Moore hosts his radio show on Friday evenings at 6 p.m. so be sure to check him out on iheartradio.