Belton Reservoir 2014 Survey Report media download(PDF 938.5 KB)

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Belton Reservoir - 2014 Survey Report

Prepared by John Tibbs and Michael S. Baird
Inland Fisheries Division - Waco District

This is the authors' summary from a 64-page report. For a copy of the complete report, use the download link in the sidebar.

Fish populations in Belton Reservoir were surveyed in 2014 using electrofishing and in 2015 using gill netting. Anglers were surveyed from June 2014 through May 2015 with a creel survey. Historical data are presented with the 2014-2015 data for comparison. This report summarizes the results of the surveys and contains a management plan for the reservoir based on those findings.

Reservoir Description

Belton Reservoir is a 12,385-acre impoundment located in Bell County, Texas. Mean and maximum water depths are 37 and 124 feet respectively, and the reservoir is classified as mesotrophic with water clarity averaging around six feet. Habitat features consisted mainly of bluffs, rocky shoreline, sandy beaches, and some standing timber.

Management History

Important sport fish include Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass, White and Palmetto Bass, White Crappie, and Catfishes. The management plan from the 2010 survey report included the continued evaluation of fry versus fingerling Palmetto Bass stockings, spring-time collection efforts for Smallmouth Bass for the hatchery program, working with the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers and bass tournament directors to improve the survivability of tournament-caught fish, improving habitat by introducing and monitoring native vegetation, and monitoring the reservoir for invasive species (e.g., Zebra Mussels) and educating marina owners and constituents about their issues and threats. Despite efforts, Zebra Mussels were confirmed in Belton Reservoir in August 2013, and the reservoir is now infested. Recent efforts have included a comprehensive public relations campaign to further educate Belton stakeholders about Zebra Mussels, how to inspect and clean, drain and dry their watercraft, and the new statewide water draining laws meant to prevent the spread of Zebra Mussels to other Texas waters.

Fish Community

Management Strategies

Sport Fish Restoration Logo

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

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