Lake Texana - 2014 Survey Report
Prepared by John Findeisen and Greg Binion
Inland Fisheries Division - Corpus Christi District
This is the authors' summary from a 34-page report. For a copy of the complete report, use the download link in the sidebar.
Fish populations in Lake Texana were surveyed in 2014 using trap netting and electrofishing and in 2015 using gill netting. Historical data are presented with the 2014-2015 data for comparison. This report summarizes the results and contains a management plan for the reservoir based on those findings.
Lake Texana is a 9,727-acre reservoir, controlled by the Lavaca-Navidad River Authority (LNRA), located on the Navidad River in the Lavaca River Basin, approximately 20 miles east of Victoria, Texas. It receives water from the Navidad River, Sandy Creek, and Mustang Creek and is used for water supply and recreation. Water level typically fluctuates 2-4 feet annually but has fluctuated as much as 12 feet.
Important sport fish species include Blue and Channel catfishes, White Bass, Largemouth Bass, and White and Black crappies. Management strategies from the 2011 management plan focused on promoting the fisheries and assisting LNRA with vegetation control, marking navigational channels, and informing the public about non-native species in the reservoir. Herbicide treatments are conducted annually by LNRA staff and hired contractors. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) assisted as consultants for vegetation control and as a funding source.
- Prey species: Gizzard and Threadfin shads were abundant in the reservoir and were the predominant forage group. Bluegill were the predominant sunfish species and relative abundance decreased from the last report. Overall, forage species were small enough to be consumed by most predatory species and abundant enough to support healthy sportfish populations.
- Catfishes: Blue, Channel, and Flathead catfishes were present in the reservoir with Blue Catfish being the predominant species. Blue Catfish abundance and size structure was excellent and this species provides a good angling opportunity.
- White Bass: Gill net catch rate of White Bass in 2015 decreased from the 2011 sample. However, anecdotal information suggested the White Bass were farther upstream than our sample sites. Anglers reported White Bass were numerous and often exceeding 12-inches in length.
- Largemouth Bass: The Largemouth Bass electrofishing catch rate was the highest in over 14 years. The population had a good balance of size classes and there was an increase in the number of legal-sized fish collected. This correlates with an increase in vegetation abundance and successful stockings. Average age of 14-inch Largemouth Bass was 2.3 years.
- Crappie: Overall trap net catch rates of Black and White crappies decreased from the previous survey but catch rates of legal-size fish were similar. Despite this decrease, the majority of both populations were comprised of sublegal-sized fish, indicating adequate spawning success and survival. White Crappie reached 10-inches by age 2.
Continue to manage fisheries under current regulations, continue to work with the LNRA on exotic aquatic vegetation control, write and distribute press releases concerning the fisheries, and fabricate and install artificial habitat structures.
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