+-------------------------------------------------------------------------+
|  TPWD News Releases Dated 2019-05-06                                    |
+-------------------------------------------------------------------------+
|  This page contains only plain text, no HTML formatting codes.          |
|  It is not designed for display in a browser but for copying            |
|  and editing in whatever software you use to lay out pages.             |
|  To copy the text into an editing program:                              |
|    --Display this page in your browser.                                 |
|    --Select all.                                                        |
|    --Copy.                                                              |
|    --Paste in a document in your editing program.                       |
|  If you have any suggestions for improving these pages, send            |
|  an e-mail to webtech@tpwd.state.tx.us and mention Plain Text Pages.    |
+-------------------------------------------------------------------------+

[ Note: This item is more than five months old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ]
May 6, 2019
TPWD Temporarily Closes Alligator Gar Fishing in Segment of the Trinity River
AUSTIN - Due to flooding conditions on the Trinity River, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is temporarily prohibiting fishing for alligator gar in portions of the river between the Highway 287 bridge near Cayuga and State Highway 7 near Crockett.
TPWD Executive Director Carter Smith issued the emergency order on Monday, May 6, to temporarily prohibit taking or attempting to take alligator gar in order to protect spawning alligator gar, which is a species of conservation concern in the Trinity River. The order takes effect immediately and will remain in effect for not more than 30 days and can be rescinded before that date if conditions warrant. While the order is in effect, anglers cannot fish for or harvest alligator gar in the Trinity River and flooded backwaters in the reach of the river specified above.
The temporary prohibition does not affect alligator gar fishing in parts of the state other than the area of the Trinity River detailed above.
Department staff has been monitoring water conditions this spring for indications of conditions that normally trigger spawning by alligator gar. Water conditions targeted by staff, such as water temperature above 68 degrees F and presence of a flood level at the moderate stage as reported by U.S. Geological Survey gauges are currently occurring.
Typically, alligator gar do not spawn every year. Research data indicate alligator gar in Texas have the greatest chance at spawning successfully if the creation of preferred spawning habitat (the seasonal inundation of low-lying areas of vegetation) occurs in late spring through early summer. Because the conditions for spawning do not exist on a regular basis, and because spawning occurs in shallow waters where numerous gar can be concentrated in one area, alligator gar are extremely vulnerable to harvest during spawning.
Check for updates on the closure at www.tpwd.texas.gov/gar-closure.
-30-

[ Note: This item is more than five months old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ]
May 6, 2019
Gulf Shrimp Season Closing on Wednesday, May 15, 2019
AUSTIN- The Gulf of Mexico commercial shrimp season for both Texas and federal waters will close 30 minutes after sunset on Wednesday, May 15, 2019 until a still-to-be determined date in July.
The closing date is based on samples collected by the Coastal Fisheries Division of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) using trawl, bag seine and other information gathered from the shrimping industry.
Data collected regarding TPWD bag seine catch rates of brown shrimp, mean lengths of shrimp in April 2019, percent of samples containing shrimp, and periods of maximum nocturnal ebb tidal flow indicate a May 15 closing date is appropriate. Typically, once the shrimp reach about 3-1/2 inches long, they begin their migration to the gulf.
"The average size and abundance of brown shrimp collected in our sampling gear in April indicates that a closure date of May 15 is appropriate," says TPWD's Coastal Fisheries Deputy Division Director, Lance Robinson.
"The closure is designed to allow escapement of shrimp out to the gulf where they can grow to a larger, more valuable size before they are vulnerable to harvest," said TPWD's Coastal Fisheries Division Director Robin Riechers. "The goal is to provide shrimp of a size that are more valuable for the shrimping industry while ensuring sustainable stocks in the future."
The Texas closure applies to gulf waters from the coast out to nine nautical miles. The National Marine Fisheries Service has announced federal waters out to 200 nautical miles also will be closed to shrimping to conform to the Texas closure.
While the statutory opening date for the gulf season is July 15, TPWD's Coastal Fisheries Division will be sampling shrimp populations to determine the optimum opening date. The date of the re-opening of gulf waters will be based on data collected in June, but the closure may not be longer than 60 days.
-30-