Definitions - Fishing

Valid Sep. 1, 2023 through Aug. 31, 2024.

Artificial lure
Any lure (including flies) with hook or hooks attached that is man-made and is used as a bait while fishing.
Something used to lure any wildlife resource. It is unlawful to use game fish or any part thereof as bait.
A condition caused by expansion of gases inside a fish, such as the stomach coming out of the mouth, bulging eyes, bloated belly, and/or distended intestines.
To take or kill and includes an attempt to take or kill.
Community Fishing Lake (CFL)
All public impoundments 75 acres or smaller located totally within an incorporated city limits or a municipal, city, county, or state park.
Release of a fish after it was held in an angler’s possession to be replaced with another fish of the same species.
Daily bag limit (anglers)
Quantity of a species of a wildlife resource, such as fish, that may be taken in one day.
A 24-hour period of time that begins at midnight and ends at midnight.
Descending Device
An instrument capable of releasing a fish at the depth from which the fish was caught with a weighted hook, lip clamp, or container that will hold the fish while it is lowered to depth to effect release. The device must be capable of releasing the fish automatically, by actions of the operator of the device, or by allowing the fish to escape on its own when at depth. The device must use a minimum of a 16-ounce (454-gram) weight and a minimum of a 60-ft (15.2-m) length of line.
Edible condition
Fit for human consumption, but does not include any portion of a game bird, game animal, or fish that is bruised (“bloodshot”) by a bullet, shot, or arrow; otherwise destroyed as a result of harvest; decayed or rotting; or obviously infected or diseased.
The act of taking or attempting to take aquatic animal life by any means.
Fishing guide
A person who, for compensation, accompanies, assists, or transports a person or persons engaged in fishing in the water of this state.
Fishing guide deck hand
A person in the employ of a fishing guide who assists in operating a boat for compensation to accompany or to transport a person or persons engaged in fishing in the water of this state.
Gear tag
A tag constructed of material as durable as the device to which it is attached. The gear tag must be legible, contain the name and address, or customer number, of the person using the device, and the date the device was set out. Date is not required for saltwater trotlines or crabtraps fished under a commercial license. For juglines and freshwater trotlines, properly marked buoys or floats qualify as valid gear tags.
Nongame fish
All species not listed as game fish except endangered and threatened fish which are defined and regulated under separate rules.
A person who is not a Texas resident (see proof of residency requirements). Non-residents under 17 years of age are considered residents for the purchase of the youth hunting license (Item 169).
Possession limit (anglers)
The maximum number of fish a person may possess before returning to their residence. Possession limit is twice the daily bag on game and nongame fish, except as provided in this guide, and does not apply to fish in the possession of or stored by a person at their residence.
A permanent structure where a person regularly sleeps and keeps personal belongings such as furniture and clothes, but does not include a temporary abode or dwelling such as a hunting or fishing club, or any club house, cabin, tent, or trailer house or mobile home used as a hunting or fishing camp, or any hotel, motel or rooming house used on a temporary basis.
A person who has lived continuously in Texas for more than six months immediately before buying their license, officially documented members of the Kickapoo Traditional Tribe of Texas or members of the U.S. Armed Forces (and their dependents) on “active duty” anywhere. A person who claims residency in any other state for any purpose and is not an officially-documented member of the Kickapoo Traditional Tribe of Texas or a member of the U.S. Armed Forces (or dependent) on active duty is not a resident.
Venting tool
A device capable of penetrating the abdomen of a fish for purposes of releasing gases accumulated in the body cavity as a result of retrieving the fish from depth. It must be a sharpened, hollow instrument that allows air to escape and of at least a 16–gauge, with an outside diameter of no less than 0.065 inches (1.65 mm).
Wildlife resource
Any wild animal, wild bird, or aquatic life.
Wildlife Resource Document (WRD)
A document that allows a person to give, leave, receive, or possess any species (or part of) of legally taken game birds, game fish or game animals; WRD must contain:
  1. name, signature, address, and hunting license number of the person who killed or caught the wildlife resource;
  2. name of the person receiving the wildlife resource;
  3. description of the wildlife resource (number and type of species or parts);
  4. date the wildlife resource was killed or caught; and
  5. location where the wildlife resource was killed or caught (name of ranch; area; county).