Lake Placid - 2008 Survey Report
Prepared by Greg Binion and John Findeisen
Inland Fisheries Division
District 1-E, Mathis, Texas
This is the authors' summary from a 24-page report. For a copy of the complete report, use the download link in the sidebar.
Fish populations in Lake Placid were surveyed in fall 2008 using trap nets and electrofishing and spring 2009 using gill nets. This report summarizes the results of the surveys and contains a management plan for the reservoir based on those findings.
Lake Placid is a 214-acre reservoir located on the Guadalupe River in Guadalupe County one-half mile southwest of Seguin. This small impoundment, constructed in 1928, is fed by the Guadalupe River watershed and used for water supply, hydroelectric generation, and recreation. The reservoir is controlled by the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority (GBRA). Substrate in the upper portion of the reservoir is composed primarily of rock and gravel, and the middle and lower portions of the reservoir is composed of clay, sand and silt. In addition to boat docks, piers, bulkheads, and riprap, littoral habitat consists of several native aquatic species including water willow, white water lily, and spatterdock.
Important sport fish species include largemouth, guadalupe, and spotted bass, channel, blue, and flathead catfish, and crappie. Nuisance aquatic vegetation (hydrilla, water hyacinth, and water lettuce) caused access and recreational problems in the watershed prior to herbicide treatments and grass carp introductions in 1996. Since 1996 hydrilla has not been observed in Lake Placid, but water hyacinth and water lettuce were observed in small quantities during the 2008 physical vegetation habitat survey. A severe flood event in October 2004 caused damage to the dam of Lake Placid, causing the reservoir to remain 12-feet below conservation pool for a 6-month period between November 2004 and April 2005. This low water period has likely caused a negative impact on the Lake Placid fisheries. Florida largemouth bass and channel catfish were stocked in 2005 following this low water event.
- Prey species: Gizzard and threadfin shad comprised the majority of the forage base for the predator assemblage. Bluegill, redbreast, and longear sunfish were present, but relative abundance of these species has declined since 2006. Most prey collected was adequate in size to be available as prey to sport fishes.
- Catfishes: Blue, channel, and flathead catfish were present in the reservoir. The relative abundance of blue catfish slightly increased from previous surveys and consisted primarily of legal-sized (>12-in) fish. Relative abundance of channel catfish increased since 2005 and size structure was balanced; consisting of good numbers of both sub-legal and legal-sized fish. Several flathead catfish were collected
- Largemouth bass: Largemouth bass abundance and size structure remained stable with a slight increase in relative abundance and the number of legal-sized (>14-in) fish sampled. Largemouth bass had adequate growth, but tended to be skinny as body condition decreased from 2006 survey and was below average for most fish.
- Crappies: Both white and black crappies are present in the reservoir; however white crappies are far more abundant. Relative abundance of white crappie slightly increased since 2006 and body conditions were adequate. Half of the crappies collected were of legal-size (>10-in).
Based on current information, the reservoir should continue to be managed with existing regulations. Hydrilla, water hyacinth, and water lettuce have caused access and recreational problems in the watershed and monitoring efforts should be maintained to detect new infestations. Electrofishing and trap netting is scheduled for fall 2010 to further assess and monitor declines in prey assemblage (primarily sunfishes) abundance as well as poor body condition of
largemouth bass and white crappie.
Performance Report as required by Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Act Texas Federal Aid Project F-30-R-34 Statewide Freshwater Fisheries Monitoring and Management Program