Moss Reservoir - 2014 Survey Report
Prepared by John H. Moczygemba and Bruce Hysmith
Inland Fisheries Division - Denison District
This is the authors' summary from a 36-page report. For a copy of the complete report, use the download link in the sidebar.
Fish populations in Moss Reservoir were surveyed in 2014 using electrofishing and trap netting and in 2015 using gill netting. Habitat, vegetation, and angler access were surveyed in 2014. A creel survey was conducted from June 2014 through May 2015. This report summarizes the results of the surveys and contains a management plan for the reservoir based on those findings.
Moss Reservoir is a 1,140-acre impoundment on Fish Creek, a tributary of the Red River, in Cooke County. Water level was below conservation level most of time between June 2011 and March 2015. Heavy rains during April-May 2015 caused the water levels to remain above conservation level through May 2015. Habitat features consisted mainly of rocky shoreline and native submerged and emergent vegetation.
Important sport fish include Channel Catfish, Largemouth Bass, and White Crappie. The management plan from the 2010 survey report included a recommendation to obtain more age and growth information on Largemouth Bass. The last stocking occurred in 2010 and consisted of 97 surplus brood Florida Largemouth Bass.
- Prey species: Electrofishing catch rate of Gizzard Shad was the highest on record. The relative abundance of prey-size Gizzard Shad (< 7-inches) was also the highest on record. Electrofishing catch rates of Bluegill have decreased from previous surveys, but catch rates of Longear Sunfish were just above the reservoir average. No Threadfin Shad were collected.
- Channel Catfish: Gill net catch rate of Channel Catfish was similar to the 2011 survey, and most of the population was legal size and in fair condition. Recruitment was evident. They were the third most sought-after fish by anglers with good sizes and numbers being harvested.
- White Bass: The historical catch rate of White Bass has always been low, but this survey had the highest catch rate on record. A White Bass die-off in 2008 had depressed the population in recent years. The sample was made up of 97% legal-size fish. Their relative weights were below recommended levels. Few are harvested by anglers and there is very little directed effort. Moss Reservoir may not be suitable for White Bass.
- Black basses: Spotted and Largemouth Bass electrofishing catch rates were the highest on record. Their body condition was good for bass less than 12 inches, but below recommended levels for bass above 12 inches. There could be an overabundance of bass less than 12 inches. Largemouth Bass were the most sought-after fish with very little harvest by anglers, but good catch rates.
- White crappie: White Crappie trap netting survey indicated 58% of the sample population was legal size. The crappie were in fair condition. Crappie were the second most sought-after fish by anglers with good harvest.
- Stock adult Threadfin Shad. Explore ways to encourage harvest of over abundant bass less than 12 inches.
- Communicate fishing information on TPWD website and District Facebook page.
- Inform the City of Gainesville about new exotic species threats to Texas waters and provide outreach assistance.
- Partner with the City of Gainesville to treat yellow floating-heart vegetation.
- Conduct standard monitoring with electrofishing, trap netting, and gill netting in 2018-2019.
Performance Report as required by Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Act Texas Federal Aid Project F-221-M-5 Inland Fisheries Division Monitoring and Management Program