Pat Cleburne Reservoir - 2003 Survey Report
Prepared by Michael S. Baird and John Tibbs
Inland Fisheries Division
District 2-B, Waco, Texas
This is the authors' summary from a 32-page report. For a copy of the complete report, use the download link in the sidebar.
Pat Cleburne Reservoir was surveyed in the fall of 2003 by boat electrofishing and trap netting, and spring of 2004 by gill netting. This report summarizes survey results and contains a management plan for the reservoir based on those findings.
Pat Cleburne Reservoir is supplied by the Nolan River within the Brazos River Basin, Johnson County and is used for municipal water supply and recreation. The 1,558-acre impoundment has a drainage area of 100 square miles, a storage capacity of 25,300 acre-feet, and a shoreline length of 9.0 miles. Mean and maximum depths are 16.5 and 64.0 feet respectively. Shoreline fish habitat consisted of rocky shoreline, inundated stumps, and over hanging brush. Bank and boat access on the reservoir is adequate, yet there are currently no handicap-specific facilities.
- Prey species: The electrofishing catch rate of gizzard shad rebounded from a low of 14.0/hour in 1999 to 320.0/hour in 2003, which was similar to catch rates in 1996 (216.7/hour) and 1993 (699.3/hour). The index of vulnerability (IOV)(i.e., the percentage of individual gizzard shad less than 8 inches total length, thought to be vulnerable to predation) was 62.8, indicating the majority were available as prey. Threadfin shad were collected at a rate of 20.0/hour during 2003 electrofishing. The electrofishing catch rate of bluegill was 913.0/hour, much higher than the average of the previous three surveys (86.6/hour). Most of these fish were of a size vulnerable to predation and none were longer than 7 inches. Redear sunfish were collected at a rate of 60.0/hour during 2003 electrofishing. This was higher than the average of the previous three surveys (8.4/hour). Some specimens over 7 inches were collected, providing some opportunity for panfish anglers.
- Catfishes: Despite the fact that they have never been stocked, blue catfish continued to be a large component of the gill netting catch in 2003 (2.8/net night). This was similar to the average of the previous three surveys (3.4/net night). Channel catfish were collected at a rate of 3.5/net night, similar to the catch rate in 1999 of 3.4/net night. Despite stocking 39,182 advanced fingerling channel catfish in 1998, no increase in the numbers of channel catfish has been documented. In fact, the gill netting catch rate in 1996 of 11.8/net night was the highest documented to date.
- White bass: White bass were collected at a rate of 18.2/net night during 2003 gill netting. White bass catch rates vary quite a bit among previous samples (1993, 1.6/net night; 1996, 14.2 net/night; 1999, 8.8 net/night).
- Largemouth bass: Largemouth bass were collected at a rate of 178.0/hour during 2003 electrofishing. This was similar to the 1999 catch rate of 228/hour and higher than 1996 (63.3/hour) and 1993 (106.0/hour). The relative stock density of 14-inch fish and larger (RSD14) of 7 (the same as in the 1999 sample) indicates few legal-sized fish available to anglers.
- White crappie: White crappie were collected at a rate of 3.0/net night during 2004 gill netting. This is similar to 1999 catch rates (2.2/net night) but less than 1996 (11.0 net/night) and 1993 (39.0/net night).
Based on current information, Pat Cleburne Reservoir should continue to be managed with current regulations. The city of Cleburne will be contacted and urged to clean up the shoreline, particularly on the western side of the reservoir.
Performance Report as required by Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Act Texas Federal Aid Project F-30-R-29 Statewide Freshwater Fisheries Monitoring and Management Program