Fort Phantom Hill Reservoir 2015 Survey Report media download(PDF 369.4 KB)

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Fort Phantom Hill Reservoir - 2015 Survey Report

Prepared by Michael Homer Jr. and Natalie Goldstrohm
Inland Fisheries Division – Abilene District

This is the authors' summary from a 36-page report. For a copy of the complete report, use the download link in the sidebar.

Fish populations in Fort Phantom Hill Reservoir were surveyed in 2015 by electrofishing and trap netting and in 2016 by gill netting. Historical data are presented with the 2015-2016 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

Fort Phantom Hill Reservoir is a 4,246-acre impoundment constructed on Elm Creek about 15 miles north of Abilene, Texas. It is located in the Brazos River Basin and is primarily used for municipal water supply and recreation. The power plant was closed in 2012. Installation of a breakwater structure was completed in 2012 to reduce wave-action at the boat ramp, and extension of the boat dock and two boat-ramp lanes was completed in 2012. In 2014, an effluent water discharge system was installed on the central eastern side of the reservoir. Water level substantially fluctuated from 2007 to 2015. After getting nearly 18 feet low, rainfall during 2015-2016 refilled the reservoir and increased water level to over conservation pool elevation. Habitat was primarily flooded terrestrial vegetation, black willow, woody debris/brush, and smartweed. Invasive saltcedar was also present.

Management History

Important sport fish include White Crappie, White Bass, Hybrid Striped Bass, Largemouth Bass, and catfishes. Walleye were stocked 10 times from 1973 to 1995 before requests were discontinued because of poor stocking success and failure to establish a fishery. Blue Catfish were introduced in 1974. An 18-inch minimum length limit on Blue Catfish existed from 1993 to 1999 before reinstatement to the statewide regulation. Threadfin Shad were introduced in 1984 and the population is self-sustaining. Florida Largemouth Bass were introduced in 1976 and have been stocked eight times from 1976 to 2001. A 16-inch minimum length limit on Largemouth Bass, in effect from 1994 to 2012, was changed to the statewide 14-inch minimum length limit on September 1, 2012. Palmetto Bass were introduced in 1977 and have since been stocked nearly annually until 2014. Sunshine Bass were introduced in 2014. Palmetto Bass were also stocked in 2014. Sunshine Bass were stocked again in 2015 and 2016.

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-6 Inland Fisheries Division Monitoring and Management Program