|  TPWD News Releases Dated 2013-03-07                                    |
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[ Note: This item is more than four 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: Brian Van Zee, (254) 867-7974, brian.vanzee@tpwd.texas.gov ]
March 7, 2013
Latest Zebra Mussel Test Results Reinforce Need to Clean, Drain, Dry Boats
Zebra mussel DNA detected in five North Texas lakes
ATHENS--The latest tests and monitoring looking for zebra mussels in North Texas lakes yielded mixed results.
While zebra mussel DNA was detected in Lakes Texoma, Ray Roberts, Lewisville, Bridgeport and Bob Sandlin, no zebra mussel populations could be confirmed by physical inspection in Lewisville, Bridgeport and Bob Sandlin.
"We know a zebra mussel population exists in Lakes Texoma and Ray Roberts," said Brian Van Zee, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department's regional director of Inland Fisheries. "Our district biologists have looked for evidence of zebra mussel populations in Lakes Lewisville, Bridgeport and Bob Sandlin since receiving the DNA test results, but none were found. This is not uncommon, as the test is very sensitive and has been known to show positive results in several lakes where zebra mussels have never been documented. It's possible that the results are showing us that boat owners may be moving contaminated boats to these lakes, but that viable populations haven't developed."
Dr. Robert McMahon, Professor Emeritus of Biology at the University of Texas at Arlington, has been monitoring 14 North Texas reservoirs for the presence of zebra mussels using three techniques. One technique looks for zebra mussel DNA in the water, another uses a microscope to look for zebra mussel larvae (veligers) in the water, and the third uses a submerged monitor to look for newly settled juvenile mussels.
"The DNA test results for Lakes Bridgeport and Bob Sandlin were very weak positives," McMahon said. "The results for Bob Sandlin were so weak as to almost be below the limit of detection."
"These results are a reminder that boaters need to take the necessary precautions before moving a boat from one lake to another," Van Zee said. "TPWD will continue monitoring these lakes for the presence of zebra mussels and doing everything it can to encourage boaters and anglers to Clean, Drain and Dry their boats before moving them to another lake. We encourage boaters and anglers to visit http://www.texasinvasives.org/ to learn more about how they can help protect the waters they enjoy."
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is asking anyone transporting a vessel that has been used on Lakes Texoma, Ray Roberts, Lavon or Lewisville to another water body to take the following precautions. (1) Clean all vegetation, mud, algae and other debris from the boat and trailer. (2) Drain all water from the motor as well as the live-well, bilge, bait buckets and any other compartments or systems that hold water. (3) Dry the vessel and associated equipment for a week to 10 days during the months of May through October or for 15 to 20 days from November through April. These drying times are approximations, and conditions such as cooler air temperatures, higher humidity and whether or not the vessel is kept in dry storage should be considered. These are the easiest preventive measures that boat owners can do to help prevent the spread of zebra mussels.
However, boats and other vessels that have been kept on a lake known to be infested with zebra mussels for an extended period of time may require additional cleaning procedures. Power-washing with water at least 140 degrees Fahrenheit and flushing the motor, bilges, live-wells and other raw water intake systems with 140-degree water will kill zebra mussels. To be effective the water coming out of the flushed systems needs to reach 140 degrees to ensure the entire system was exposed to water hot enough to kill the mussels.
If it is not possible to clean the internal systems or compartments using 140-degree water, the use of either straight vinegar or a chlorine bleach and water solution (one-half ounce bleach to one gallon water) can be effective at killing zebra mussels as long as the mixture is kept in contact with the mussels for a sufficient amount of time (20 to 30 minutes). Clean water should be used to flush the chemicals and dead mussels from the boat following treatment. Boat owners should check with their manufacturer to be sure using these chemicals will not void their warranty.
Large vessels with complex water intake systems such as those used for cooling the engine, air conditioning or personal sanitation may require decontamination by a boat mechanic or marina.
A video showing how to decontaminate a boat can be viewed at http://www.100thmeridian.org.
Under the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and Texas Penal Codes, possession or transporting of zebra mussels in Texas is a Class C misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not less than $25 nor more than $500 for the first offense. However, repeat offenses can be elevated to a Class B misdemeanor which is punishable by a fine of up to $2,000, jail time up to 180 days, or both. If an individual is convicted a third time for this same offense it becomes a Class A misdemeanor which is a fine of up to $4,000, jail time not to exceed 1 year, or both.
On the Net:

[ Note: This item is more than four years old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ] [RM]
March 7, 2013
CCC Vets, Families Sought to Attend 80th Anniversary Celebration in April
CANYON - At his March 1933 inauguration amid the Great Depression, President Franklin D. Roosevelt called for the creation of a "forest army" to staff a massive conservation and public recreation program that included the development of state and local parks. By July, 274,000 men between the ages of 17 to 25 had joined the Civilian Conservation Corps.
Now, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is looking for living CCC veterans, their family members and the general public to attend a celebration of the 80th anniversary of the CCC on April 6-7 at Palo Duro Canyon State Park. The majestic Panhandle park, which today covers 38,000 acres, is one of 29 CCC Texas state parks operated by TPWD that were built in the 1930s and 1940s.
Most of the young men whose skilled hands worked on soil conservation and forestry projects, and helped build the structures that form the backbone of such outstanding state parks as Palo Duro, Garner and Caddo Lake have passed on as the anniversary approaches. Those CCC workers who are still alive today are in their 90s.
Members of seven CCC companies between 1933 and 1937 developed and made improvements to Palo Duro, building roads, steps, trails, dams, picnic shelters and the handsome, stone interpretive center perched on the canyon rim. By 1935, 27 CCC companies were working in Texas state parks, building roads, bridges, swimming pools, dams and hundreds of sturdy, handsome rock-and-timber structures, such as Indian Lodge in Fort Davis.
The Texas state parks operated by TPWD bear the distinct mark of the young CCC laborers who erected permanent structures that reflect the National Park Service's trademark "rustic style." The 101 companies of young men at 130 CCC camp locations throughout the state developed 56 local and state parks in Texas between 1933 and 1942 before many of them headed off to World War II.
Now, Texas stands ready to salute these remarkable gentlemen one more time. For more information about the celebration, please contact event coordinator Janelle Taylor at (512) 389-4665 or Janelle.taylor@tpwd.texas.gov.

[ Note: This item is more than four years old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ] [TH]
March 7, 2013
Texas Parks and Wildlife Turns 50 This Year
Agency Calls for Texans To Share Stories, Photos, Become Ambassadors for the Future
AUSTIN - In the late summer of 1963, the most popular show on television was "The Beverly Hillbillies," a gallon of gas cost 29 cents, the University of Texas Longhorns were headed toward their first national football championship, "My Boyfriend's Back" was the top hit on AM radio and Texas had a new state agency called the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.
Earlier that year, Texas lawmakers had begun consideration of House Bill 21, introduced by Weatherford State Rep. James M. Cotton, an attorney descended from a Parker County pioneer. The measure, called for by Gov. John B. Connally as part of his campaign to modernize state government, would merge the Game and Fish Commission with the State Parks Board to create a new agency dedicated to conservation, parks and outdoor recreation. The final bill passed in the Senate in early April and Connally later signed it into law with an effective date of Aug. 23.
This year, TPWD will mark its 50th anniversary using technology not even imagined in 1963. The department has set up a 50th anniversary web page at www.lifesbetteroutside.org where people can share stories and photos about their memorable moments in the Texas outdoors, and thereby inspire others to enjoy nature.
While online, the agency hopes people will sign up to become a Texas Parks and Wildlife ambassador and pledge to do things like visit state parks, take a kid hunting or fishing, and watch and share a video showcasing what's made life better outside in Texas.
"With all the bounty and beauty of our natural places, our parks, our wildlife, and with everything that's at stake in our state today, we are excited about our 50th birthday," said TPWD Executive Director Carter Smith, "but we don't want it to be all about us, and we want to look to the future as we celebrate our past."
While acknowledging the many contributions of former and current TPWD employees, Smith says the agency wants the half-century celebration to focus on the people who support the department, and to inspire a new generation of supporters.
"We're a successful organization in large part because of those who support us," Smith said, "and we can't fulfill our mission without help. If you love wildlife and parks, step up to be a TPWD ambassador and join us in shaping the Texas outdoors we want to see in the next 50 years."
On the Net:
TPWD 50th Anniversary Web Pages: http://tpwd.texas.gov/features/50years/
News Roundup: http://tpwd.texas.gov/newsmedia/releases/news_roundup/tpwd_50th_anniversary/