New for 2014 - 2015

Fishing Regulations

Salt Water

For spotted seatrout, the daily bag limit for all waters (bays and gulf) south of FM 457 in Matagorda County is five fish (10 fish possession limit). North of FM 457, the daily bag limit is 10 fish (20 fish possession limit). Length limits (minimum 15 inches, maximum 25 inches) remain in effect coast-wide. A person may retain one spotted seatrout per day that measures more than 25 inches and must count that fish as part of the daily bag and possession limit.

For flounder, November's reduced bag limit will be extended into the first two weeks of December, with fewer restrictions on fishing methods. The daily bag limit for all species of flounder is 5 fish except November 1 to December 14, when the daily limit is 2 fish. In November, flounder may only be taken with pole and line. From December 1-14, flounder may be harvested by any legal means.

Oyster regulations: Approximately 434 acres in the East Bay Approved Area in Galveston Bay and 54 acres encompassing Half-Moon Reef in Matagorda Bay will be closed to oyster harvest for two years in order to aid reef restoration efforts.

Fresh Water

Effective July 1, 2014

To prevent the accidental spread of invasive zebra mussels, persons leaving or approaching public fresh water are required to drain all water from their vessels and on-board receptacles (includes live wells, bilges, motors and any other receptacles or water-intake systems coming into contact with public waters). This rule applies at all sites where boats can be launched and includes all types and sizes of boats whether powered or not, personal watercraft, sailboats, kayaks/canoes, or any other vessel used to travel on public waters. Learn more about protecting our waters.

Effective September 1, 2014

A new regulation gives TPWD's Executive Director the authority to temporarily prohibit alligator gar fishing in areas where conditions are right for spawning. Conditions that would be used to invoke this action include water temperatures from 68 to 82°F and occurrence of moderate flood levels. Closures would last no more than 30 days.

Recreational jugliners will be allowed to use jugs or floats of any color other than orange. Orange is still reserved for commercial juglines.

In addition to the above statewide changes, anglers will see new regulations on the following water bodies:

  • Guadalupe River downstream of Canyon Dam (Comal County) – For rainbow and brown trout, a new special-regulation zone will begin 800 yards downstream from the dam release and extend downstream to the easternmost Highway 306 bridge crossing. In this area, length limit will be a 12- to 18-inch slot with a daily bag of five trout; only one trout 18 inches or longer may be retained. The new zone will be in addition to the existing special trout zone, which begins at the easternmost Highway 306 crossing and extends downstream to the second crossing on River Road. That stretch will still have a minimum length limit of 18 inches and a daily bag of one trout. In both special-regulation zones, all trout harvested must be caught on artificial lures.
  • Caddo Lake (Harrison and Marion counties), Toledo Bend Reservoir (Newton, Panola, Sabine and Shelby counties), and Sabine River downstream of Toledo Bend (Newton and Orange counties) – For blue and channel catfish, the daily bag and possession limit = 50 fish in combination with no minimum length limit; however, only five blue and/or channel catfish 30 inches or longer may be retained each day. Limits on flathead catfish will not change: on these border waters, minimum length is 18 inches and the daily bag and possession limit is 10 fish.
  • Lake Kyle (Hays County) – Largemouth bass, channel catfish and all sunfish species will be catch-and-release only.
  • Tradinghouse Creek Reservoir (McLennan County) will no longer have a special regulation for red drum. Any red drum remaining in the reservoir will be subject to the statewide limits: daily bag three fish, minimum length 20 inches, maximum length 28 inches. A Red Drum Tag or Bonus Red Drum Tag allows an angler to keep one fish per year over the maximum length, in addition to the daily bag limit.
  • Canyon Lake Project #6 (Lubbock County) will have the same regulations as Projects #1-5: a five-per-day bag limit on channel and blue catfish with no minimum length limit. Pole and line is the only fishing method allowed, and each angler will be allowed no more than two poles.
  • North Concho River from O.C. Fisher dam to the Bell Street dam and South Concho River from Lone Wolf dam to Bell Street dam (Tom Green County) will have a limit of two fishing poles per person.

Hunting Regulations

Means and Methods

It is now lawful for any person (other than a convicted felon) to possess a firearm while hunting deer or turkey during an archery-only season; however, the use of a firearm to take turkey or deer during an archery season remains unlawful.

It is now lawful to use an air rifle to take squirrels, provided:

  • the rifle is designed to be fired from the shoulder;
  • the projectile size is a minimum of .177 caliber (4.5mm); and
  • the projectile is delivered by means of the force of a spring, air, or non-ignited compressed gas at a muzzle velocity of no less than 600 feet per second.

Mule Deer

In Knox County there is now an archery season and a 16-day general season.

  • Archery – Sept. 27 – Oct. 31
  • General – Nov. 22 – Dec. 7
  • Bag Limit – two deer, no more than one buck, antlerless by permit only.

In Castro, Hale, and Lubbock counties there is now a 9-day general season (no archery season).

  • General Season Only – Nov. 22 – 30
  • Bag Limit – two deer, no more than one buck, antlerless by permit only.


In Anderson, Angelina, Bowie, Camp, Cass, Chambers, Cherokee, Delta, Fannin, Franklin, Freestone, Galveston, Gregg, Hardin, Harris, Harrison, Henderson, Hopkins, Houston, Hunt, Jasper, Jefferson, Lamar, Leon, Liberty, Limestone, Marion, Montgomery, Morris, Nacogdoches, Navarro, Newton, Orange, Panola, Polk, Rains, Red River, Robertson, Rusk, Sabine, San Augustine, San Jacinto, Shelby, Smith, Titus, Trinity, Tyler, Upshur, Van Zandt, Walker, and Wood Counties, the season has been extended.

  • Open season: May 1-May 31 and October 1 through the last Sunday in February.
  • Daily bag limit: 10 squirrels.
  • Possession limit: 20 squirrels.

In Brazos, Burleson, Collin, Dallas, Ellis, Falls, Grayson, Grimes, Kaufman, Madison, Milam, and Rockwall counties, the season is now from September 1 – August 31 and there is no bag or possession limit.


Hunters can now meet the mandatory check-station requirement for harvested Eastern turkey via the department's internet or mobile application for Apple or Android devices.

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