Presenter: Larry McKinney

Commission Agenda Item No. 13
The Science Behind Coastal Fisheries
Celebrating 30 Years of Management Success
November 2005

I. Executive Summary: This year Coastal Fisheries celebrates 30 years of its monitoring program with a symposium to highlight the value of that effort in managing the marine fisheries resources of Texas. The symposium is scheduled for November 17-18 in Corpus Christi and the Commission and public are invited.

II. Discussion: For two days in November, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department's Coastal Fisheries Division will host a symposium in Corpus Christi celebrating 30 years of continuous monitoring of the state's marine fisheries and seeking input on how it should operate for the next 30 years.

Information from 40,000 bag seines, 60,0000 trawls, 40,000 dredge samples, 20,000 gill net sets and 250,000 angler interviews collected over the past three decades generated millions of data points that make this TPWD database one of the longest, and possibly the longest, marine resources dataset in the world.

Information we have gained from the database has been the basis for resource management decisions and regulations that have generated an economic impact of almost $2 billion annually in Texas. TPWD has also used this information in efforts to secure freshwater inflows for and to protect the water quality of our estuaries, which are critical habitats for our fisheries.

The symposium will feature panel discussions on lessons learned during the past 30 years, and challenges and issues facing Texas coastal fisheries in the future. The information gained during the discussions will be incorporated into the Coastal Fisheries Division's new 30-year strategic plan.

The symposium will be November 17-18, 2005 at the Omni Bayfront Hotel and is open to the public. Registration information will be available soon.