Archive for the 'Fishing' Category

Fishing: Sharelunker Program

Friday, March 13th, 2015
ShareLunker No. 562 Caught by Darrell Tompkins of Huffman, TX March 7, 2015 in Sam Rayburn, TPWD Photo by Reese Sparrow

ShareLunker No. 562 Caught by Darrell Tompkins of Huffman, TX March 7, 2015 in Sam Rayburn, TPWD Photo by Reese Sparrow

This is Passport to Texas

If you catch a 13 pound or bigger largemouth bass, your first instinct may be to take a photo with it, and then release it. Or…you could donate it to the Toyota ShareLunker program at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center.

04—The ShareLunker Program is probably the reason this facility is here.

Allen Forshage is Director of the Center, which is a state-of-the-art fish-care facility that contains special tanks known as the “Lunker Bunker”.

17—The way this center was built, particularly the extensive hatcheries, improved our ability to do a selective breeding program where we’ve been taking these ShareLunkers and spawning them with males that are also offspring of ShareLunkers in an effort to try to improve the genetics of fish that we put back into public lakes.

Find out how to donate a fish to the program on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website. The program will accept donations of live fish through April 30. Every time an angler donates a fish to the program they make bass fishing better for everyone.

13—One of the measures of success for the program is how many column inches are being written about the ShareLunker Program. A lot of the outdoor writers use the ShareLunker Program as a barometer to measure how good fishing is in Texas.

It’s darned good if you believe what you read. And you should. Find details about the Toyota ShareLunker Program on the Texas Parks & Wildlife website.

The Sport Fish Restoration Program supports our series and provides funding for the operations and management of the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti

Angling: Fly Fish Texas March 14, 2015

Tuesday, March 10th, 2015
Fly Fishing Gear

Fly Fishing Gear

This is Passport to Texas

If you’ve always wanted to learn to fly fish, check out the 16th Annual Fly Fish Texas event March 14 at the Texas Fresh Water Fisheries Center in Athens.

09— Our entire facility – several dozen acres – is converted into a gigantic fly fishing school for beginners and intermediates alike.

Jim Booker coordinates the event, where among other activities, attendees will learn to cast for and catch fish.

10— We’ll have over a hundred volunteer instructors coming to man the different stations and activities. And these are volunteers that come from fly fishing clubs all over Texas.

Speakers will share tips on where to fly fish in Texas and beyond; and outdoor seminars take place all day.

13—In fact, we’ve just added a really interesting one called tenkara fishing. Tenkara fly fishing is the ancient Japanese form, which involves just the rod, the line, and the tie – no reel is involved.

Fly Fish Texas, March 14 at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center offers hands on opportunities for attendees, too.

08—We have an actual classroom here, and on a walk-in basis, from noon until 4 p.m. we will do beginning fly tying classes.

Dive shows, tram tours of the hatchery, vendors and good food round out the day – Fly Fish Texas activities are free with regular paid admission to the center; find a schedule of events on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.

The Sport Fish Restoration Program supports our series.

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

Tech: Outdoor Annual App Helps Anglers

Monday, March 9th, 2015
TPWD Texas Outdoor Annual App

Texas Parks and Wildlife Texas Outdoor Annual App

This is Passport to Texas

Smart phones and tablets continue to grow in popularity among the general public.

04— We’ve also noticed that our anglers are using those devices.

Tim Peterson, Texas Parks and Wildlife’s director of creative and interactive services, says that as the weather warms, anglers want to get on the water. With the Texas Outdoor Annual app they can spend more time fishing and less time wondering if they’re in compliance.

15— If an angler is sitting in a particular water body or lake – or near a water body or lake – they can use the GPS function in the app, locate the lake that they’re at or near, and they can see the bag limits and the exceptions for that particular lake.

The FREE Texas Outdoor Annual app is a convenient way for anglers of all ages to keep up with regulations.

24—The whole idea with the app was not only to make it mobile, but also make it easy for folks to use while in the field. We’re seeing a wide range of ages [using mobile devices], so it’s not just a younger audience; it’s a new audience. Anecdotally, I will tell you that I spent some time with my 80-year-old father-in-law this last weekend, and he used his mobile device as much as my 12-year-old daughter.

The free Texas Outdoor Annual App is available in iTunes or Google Play storefronts and you can also find more information on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.

Funding for our series provided in part by Ram Trucks. Guts. Glory. Ram

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti

Spring Break: Fishing and More

Wednesday, March 4th, 2015
Fishing on the South Llano River

Fishing on the South Llano River

This is Passport to Texas

Sometimes things sneak up on us before we’re ready. Take spring break, for example. Are you at a loss for what to do with the family? Robert Ramirez with Outreach and Education at Texas Parks and Wildlife says there’s something for everyone when you visit a state park.

There is something for everybody: everything from hikes to stargazing. The little “techie” kids can grab their iPads and iPhones and utilize those at night. There are things for the adults. The Go Fish programs are for both kids and adults alike. All our parks are great for fishing, and you never know what you’re going to get in some of those bodies of water down there.

What if you don’t have tackle?

Our state parks – most of them – have tackle loaner programs available. Just look online at the park you’re going to visit and double check to make sure they do have a tackle loaner program available.

Speaking of online, is this where people can go to plan their last minute, but very fun, state park getaway for their spring break vacation?

Yes. Definitely. Go to our website, and under ‘calendar’ click on ‘kids’ and the mid two weeks of March are just chock full of events for kids and families and things for them to do.

Remember: Life’s Better Outside. For Texas Parks and Wildlife, I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Fishing: Saltwater Fishing in 2015

Friday, February 20th, 2015
Art Morris with his saltwater catch.

Art Morris with his saltwater catch.

This is Passport to Texas

Variety and quality – that’s what anglers can expect when fishing in Texas bays.

12— Spotted sea trout and red drum on any given cast. Throw on the occasional flounder and black drum…. There’s just tremendous opportunity there for any sort of skill level at any time of the year for that matter.

Art Morris, with coastal fisheries says his favorite is the Upper Laguna Madre.

24— I’ve been fishing it since I was a child, and it’s those trophy sized spotted sea trout that I like to go after. You’ve got clear water, shallow grass flats; you’ve got deep water reefs, and you use top waters and site cast the fish. And, oftentimes, it’s just the perfect setting for sport fishing on the Texas coast – for me, personally.

Each bay system is different and requires different tactics and baits.

25— As you move down the coast, the water tends to get clearer, so we tend to use more variety of stuff on the lower coast as far as artificial lures and bait. On the upper coast the water gets a little more turbid; you get more into live bait fishing, dead bait fishing. Some artificial use up there, but yeah, as you move down and up the coast, each bay is unique and have their own techniques that work best in those particular areas.

Want more? Check out Art Morris’ article on bay fishing in the digital fishing issue at

The Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program supports our series.

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