|  TPWD News Releases Dated 2009-06-16                                    |
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[ Note: This item is more than eight years old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ]
[ Additional Contacts: Kevin Storey, (903) 593-5077, Kevin.storey@tpwd.texas.gov; Aaron Jubar, (903) 593-5077, aaron.jubar@tpwd.texas.gov ]
June 16, 2009
Lake Fork Trophy Bass Survey Tops 10,000 Entries
ATHENS, Texas -- In May, the Lake Fork Trophy Bass Survey continued its run as the most successful program of its kind. Since the survey began in March 2003, anglers have reported catching more than 10,000 trophy largemouth bass from the 27,000 acre reservoir. During its nearly 30-year history, anglers have braved the stumpy waters of Lake Fork in search of the fish of a lifetime- and many have been rewarded! The latest milestone for the Trophy Bass Survey confirms Lake Fork's legacy as one of the finest trophy largemouth bass fisheries in the world.
The Lake Fork Trophy Bass Survey, a voluntary program in which anglers report their catches of trophy largemouth bass on Lake Fork, has been collecting valuable information for Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) fisheries managers for more than six years. This survey, which is a cooperative project of the Lake Fork Chamber of Commerce, the Lake Fork Sportsman's Association and TPWD, provides invaluable details on Lake Fork's world-renowned trophy bass fishery; information which cannot be obtained through standard fisheries surveys.
The Lake Fork Trophy Bass Survey gives anglers an opportunity to record their catches of fish 7 pounds and greater. Anglers are asked to provide information at participating marinas on weights and lengths of these trophy fish. Each month, TPWD personnel collect the survey ledgers and produce a summary of the results. Not only does the survey generate good publicity for the lake, but it also allows fisheries managers and stakeholders a chance to cooperate in a successful project.
During its history, the Lake Fork Trophy Bass Survey has recorded 10,127 fish over 7 pounds. Fisheries managers have estimated through their angler creel surveys that through May 2009, 8.1% of trophy fish reportedly caught by interviewed anglers were reported to the Trophy Bass Survey. If the numbers are expanded, that would indicate a catch of in excess of 125,025 fish over 7 pounds since March 2003! That's a monthly average of 1,667 trophies.
Since March 2003, 8,423 of the Trophy Bass Survey entries (83%) were weighed, and 1,316 of them (15.6%) were 10 pounds or heavier. Fifty-six of the weighed fish were 13 pounds or better, with many of these fish being eligible for entry in TPWD's Sharelunker program. Anglers measured lengths on 5,985 of their entries (59%) and of these fish, 33.3% were 24 inches or longer. This summary information provides compelling evidence that the slot-length limit is working on Lake Fork, since considerable numbers of fish are growing past the upper limit of the slot and not dying of old age or the effects of catch-and-release before they get to 24 inches.
The survey also confirms that the fishery at Lake Fork remains the most popular destination for anglers seeking trophy bass in Texas. Entrants from 47 states, the District of Columbia, and many foreign nations were represented in the Lake Fork Trophy Bass Survey. As expected, residents of the home state participated in the survey at the highest rate. An estimated 62.6% of trophies were reported by Texans. Neighboring anglers from Oklahoma (6.7%), Missouri (6.0%), Louisiana (5.0%), and Arkansas (3.8%) accounted for a combined 84.1% of entries. Anglers from Illinois, Tennessee, Indiana, Mississippi, Kansas and Kentucky combined, accounted for an additional 8.4%. Despite higher gasoline prices and an economic recession, anglers are still willing to make the trip to Lake Fork.
For questions, comments and additional information concerning the Lake Fork Trophy Bass Survey, please contact TPWD Inland fisheries management personnel in Tyler at (903) 593-5077.

[ Note: This item is more than eight years old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ]
[ Additional Contacts: Charlie Wilson, (512) 414-0194, agclays381@yahoo.com ]
June 16, 2009
Texas Teens Take Home Honors From Ag Clays 381 State Trap Shoot
KERRVILLE, Texas -- The Second Annual Ag Clays 381 State Trap Shoot took place June 8 at the Hill Country Shooting Sports Range in Kerrville, where 121 shooters representing 23 schools formed 28 teams, including 10 mixed teams, 15 all male teams and 3 all female teams.
The Ag Clays 381 Trap activity began three years ago by Charlie Wilson, Mobile Shooting Range coordinator for Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. The shoot is for those students enrolled in the Agriculture Science elective course, Ag. 381, Wildlife and Recreation Management. The event is open to any student currently or previously enrolled in Ag 381 who has completed hunter education certification as part of the curriculum. This means that a student can enroll as a sophomore and compete in the event for three years until they graduate.
"The requirements follow the usual UIL rules of no pass, no play, but have much more stringent requirements through the Future Farmer's of America (FFA) Career Development Education (CDE) rules," said TPWD Hunter Education Coordinator Terry Erwin, who added it is possible to gain scholarships to college if one's scores are consistently good enough. "We look at it as a recruitment tool for young people to learn a sport that may be carried on throughout their entire lives," said Erwin.
There was more than a 100 percent increase in shooters from last year with more than half of them beginning as new shooters in the program. River Star Farms, a company who produces items as fundraiser products for FFA chapters, donated and catered the noon meal with Sloppy Joes, chips and drinks. There were 82 male and 39 female shooters from high schools as far north as Littlefield in the Pan-handle, as far south as Corpus Christi and east at Wills Point.
The winners were as follows:
All Female State Champion:
--Brazoswood High School -- Team members -- Kelsey Firkins, Ashley Slaughter, Taylor Self and Kaitlyn Garrett
--2nd Place -- Whitharral ISD -- Team members -- Molly Presley, Alisha Pecero, Sarah Myatt, and Breanna Hays
--3rd Place -- Belton High School -- Team members -- Jessica Mebane, Haley Thorne, Ashley Sanders, Kaitlyn Ellis
All Male State Champion:
--New Braunfels High School -- Team Members -- Tyler Martin, Blaine Floerke and Nelson Reuwer
--2nd Place -- Whitharral ISD -- Team Members -- Tell Rutledge, Keaton Samsel, Corey Nickelson and Ryan Lorenz
--3rd Place -- Corpus Christi Mary Carroll High School -- Team Members -- Dustin Almendariz, Payton Sienkiewicz and Ryan Sijansky
Mixed Team State Champion:
--Littlefield High School -- Team Members -- Tucker Foley, Shelby White, Jake Blackwell and Kylon Blackwell
--2nd Place -- Brazoswood High School -- Team Members -- Dean Tumlinson, Kelsey Firkins, Cody Wilson and Zack Henderson
--3rd Place -- Bellville High School -- Team Members -- Collyn Tiemann, Tanner Vecha, Garrett Rinn and Brittney Klein
The High Overall Male State Champion was Tyler Martin of New Braunfels, who shot a score of 96 out of 100. The High Overall Female State Champion was Raylea Underwood or Borden County ISD (Gail, Texas), who shot a score of 93 out of 100.
Information about the Ag Clays 381 program is on the TPWD Web site. For details or questions, contact Charlie Wilson at agclays381@yahoo.com or (512) 414-0194.
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