Archive for the 'Boating' Category

Preventing the Spread of Zebra Mussels

Thursday, July 6th, 2017
Places where invasive zebra mussels hitch a ride.

Places where invasive zebra mussels hitch a ride.

This is Passport to Texas

Last month we discovered zebra mussels in Canyon Lake.

Every time you get a new infestation it’s discouraging – it just really is. It just gets you down. And it’s frustrating, because you know that if boaters and people who we know care about the lakes and rivers in this state, if they would just take some time, and be a little careful and make sure that they just clean, drain and dry their boat before they leave the lake every single time, that will go a long time towards preventing their spread.

Fisheries biologist Brian Van Zee says zebra mussels can clog public water intakes, and damage boats and motors left in infested waters.

You know, if boats are stored on the water in the marina, those are the ones where we’re going to have colonies of adult zebra mussels attached to them. Those are the ones that boat owners need to take the time to have that boat fully cleaned and decontaminated; have it inspected by Parks and Wildlife before you go ahead and move it to a different lake.

Once in a river basin, zebra mussels are there to stay.

But, what we can do is we can prevent them from being spread to a new river basin. If we can get the word out to these boat owners and public and transporters in the state, and let them know we’re trying to stop this spread, and prevent new infestations within new river basins – then we have a chance.

Find procedures to clean, drain and dry your boat on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.

The Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program supports our series.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Boaters’ Rules of the “Road”

Wednesday, May 24th, 2017
Enjoy safe boating this summer and every season.

Enjoy safe boating this summer and every season.

This is Passport to Texas

If you plan on operating a boat, certain items are necessary to have on board for the safety of you and your passengers.

You should have a sound producing device, and you should have a life jacket for every person that’s on board. If you’re boating at night, you should have the proper lights—that are working—and we suggest a first aid kit.

Tim Spice, manager of boater education for Parks and Wildlife, says anyone born on or after September 1, 1993 is required to take boater education.

We cover lots of different things, including safety aspects of boating; the different types of vessel you may have; the rules of the road; the required equipment. Again, everyone on board a vessel needs to have a lifejacket that’s accessible. We define what accessible means by law so that you don’t get in trouble when you’re on the water and a game warden stops to give you a boating safety check.

He advises filing a float plan with someone onshore that details where you’ll be and when you plan to return, in case an emergency occurs while on the water. Remember: the rules for operating a boat are different than for a car.

There’s no lines on the road; there’s no speed limits, per se. There are different signs and things you have to look out for that are very different than you would in your car.

By taking a boating safety course—online or in a classroom—you’ll learn those rules.

The Sport Fish Restoration program supports our series and works to increase fishing and boating opportunities in Texas.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Boat Safe, Boat Savvy

Tuesday, May 23rd, 2017

Mike Boone, game warden for the TPWD, checks boaters along the Neches River for violations. Image: Beaumont Enterprise]

Mike Boone, Texas Game Warden, checks boaters along the Neches River for violations. [Image: Beaumont Enterprise]

This is Passport to Texas

It wasn’t that long ago when drought conditions caused low lake levels that kept boats and other watercraft in dry dock.

We have a lot more water now, so the lakes have changed.

Good thing, too, because Texans love being out on the water in summer. And, the upcoming Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start of summer boating season. Tim Spice, manager of boater education for Parks and Wildlife, says being savvy about safety keeps everyone protected when on the water.

We can identify two major factors that you as a boater can affect in how you operate a vessel, and the things that you do in and around the water. One is wear a lifejacket. Eighty percent of those people that die from falling in the water would be alive if they had a life jacket on. And then the second thin you can do is to not drink alcohol. Alcohol affects your judgment, and you can lose your driver’s license—your vehicle driver’s license—the court can take that away from you if you are found guilty of boating while intoxicated.

The rules of the road as they pertain to boating, are similar but also different than those for driving a car.

The rules on the road are all designed based on the type of vessel and the maneuverability of the vessel.

Find those rules on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website—and on tomorrow’s show.

The Sport Fish Restoration program supports our series and works increase fishing and boating opportunities in Texas.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Angler Legacy Program

Monday, June 6th, 2016
Image courtesy www.takemefishing.org

Image courtesy www.takemefishing.org

This is Passport to Texas

If you’re a seasoned angler, put your skills to good use.

We really encourage the avid angler to introduce fishing to at least one new person a year. And there’d be no better time to do that than during National Fishing and Boating Week…

National Fishing and Boating week is now through June 12th, and it’s a project of the non-profit Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation, or RBFF. Frank Peterson is president and CEO. He invites anglers who are passionate about sharing the sport with others to join the Anglers’ Legacy Movement.

If they go to our website takemefishing.org, they can join the anglers’ legacy movement. We have over 213-thousand ambassadors around the country who have taken a pledge to introduce fishing to someone new.

On average members of the Anglers’ Legacy movement introduce more than three new people to fishing each year.

Another interesting stat on our Ambassador program is that over 70% of the people they introduce to the sport are under the age of 18. So they’re helping to ensure the future of angling and boating in this country.

So introduce someone to fishing this week.

That would be a great week to just say, hey, I’m going to do something for young people; I’m going to do something for the sport.

Go to takemefishing.org for more information about the Anglers’ Legacy Movement. That’s our show for today… Funding provided in part by Ram Trucks. Guts. Glory. Ram
For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Before Summer’s Truly Gone–Get Wet!

Wednesday, September 16th, 2015
Women on the water at a BOW Workshop.

Women on the water at a BOW Workshop.

This is Passport to Texas

Autumn is gaining on us…and no self-respecting Texan would allow an entire summer to go by without spending time in or on the water.

Fortunately, state parks provide opportunities for both.

Want to do a little canoeing, but don’t want to go it alone? This month you can join a ranger for a two-hour, three mile long guided canoe trip through the Martin Dies Jr.’s State park’s swampy marshes and the Neches River. Be on the lookout for wildlife such as bald eagles, belted kingfishers, herons, turtles and alligators. Find the schedule on the calendar at texasstateparks.org.

Make tracks – or is that waves – to any Texas inland or coastal paddling trail. These trails provide well-mapped accessible day trips in a variety of settings, for all levels of paddling experience. Find trail maps online.

Anglers experience a new perspective on the sport by casting a line from a kayak or canoe. It’s simple to do, and you can find tips on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.

There’s still time to get neck-deep in cool water, as the hot days are quite over. No matter where you live in Texas, there’s a state park with a pool, lake, river, creek, or even ocean just waiting for you to dive in.

Find information about all the wet and wild opportunities in Texas on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.

For Texas parks and wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.