Archive for January, 2013

Angling: Battling White Bass

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

White Bass, Colorado Bend State Park

White Bass, Colorado Bend State Park

This is Passport to Texas

Largemouth bass give fishermen a good fight, but the smaller white bass is just as capable of providing anglers with an adrenaline kick.

14— Ounce for ounce, they are a real strong fighter. But they’re not as big as largemouths. If they grew as large as largemouth bass, I think we’d have to fish for them with surf rods and heavy lines.

John Jefferson is an outdoor writer, and crafted an article about this species for Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine’s February digital fishing special.

11— Most people that fish for whites will use lightweight tackle, a medium to lightweight spinning rod, and four to six pound test line – and then they’re fun!

Late winter and early spring white bass begin schooling in tributaries to spawn. Whether from a bank or a boat, fishing for whites in open and running water is your best bet for success.

21— Middle of the creek, and then draw the lure back to the shore. And you’ve covered water from the deeper water in the middle up to the shore. You’ll probably hang one. It’s not uncommon, and a neat thing to see [that sometimes] you’ll hook one fish and as you’re reeling it in and playing it, there will be two or three others schooling right along with it.

They’re probably offering moral support. Read the February digital fishing special, free online, at

That’s our show…with support from the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program…funded by your purchase of fishing and hunting equipment and motor boat fuel…

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

Angling: White Bass Run= Sprintime Fun

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

White Bass, Illustration TPWD

White Bass, Illustration TPWD

This is Passport to Texas

In the February Digital Fishing Special from Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine you’ll find an article on white bass by outdoor writer John Jefferson.

11— White bass is a great sport fish. Parks and Wildlife records show there are more white bass caught per hour of fishing than any other fish in Texas.

Usually a lake dweller, white bass school in tributaries to spawn in late winter and early spring.

21— The white bass are triggered to spawn when the water reaches 55 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. As far as the calendar, instead of the thermometer, it starts sometimes as early as warm days in January, but it really picks up in February and March. Those are the best two months.

Anglers may keep up to 25 fish caught with a pole and line that meet the 10-inch length requirement. Although white bass prefer shad and minors, they’ll take artificial lures, which is what John Jefferson says he uses.

13— With me, it was a matter of laziness. I didn’t want to lug a big minnow bucket up and down the creeks when I could take a few jigs with me and a lightweight spinning rod and spend more time actually fishing than changing bait.

We’ll talk more with John about white bass tomorrow.

That’s our show…with support from the Sport Fish Restoration Program…funded by your purchase of fishing and hunting equipment and motor boat fuel…

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

Outdoor Story: Shea and the Wild Boar

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

Feral Hog, image TPWD

Feral Hog, image TPWD

This is Passport to Texas Outdoor Stories

Insert sfx of hogs roaming around

Opportunistic eaters, a campsite packed with trail mix and hot dogs would be prize winnings to a feral pig – except, they’re not always welcome.

Hearing a raid on his campsite one night, young camper, Shea Prihoda tells us about the scare his grunting visitors gave him.

21 – I was camping once and I was sleeping and I woke up because something fell beside my tent and it caved in. So I started hitting and it started growling like a boar. So I started screaming because I was scared cuz it was right by my head. Then, one of the adults, I heard his tent unzip and he threw something, and then we heard a bunch of boars stampeding through our campsite. Anyone that woke up from my screaming heard it.

That night, the pigs and the food were left unscathed; but another encounter is something Shafer…and the pigs…want to avoid

03 – I would kill a pig if I could these days. Let’s go hunting!

Before you go hunting, Shea, you’ll need to pass a hunter education class and purchase a license.

Frightening or fun: we want to hear your memorable outdoor experience. Share it with us at

That’s our show…we record our series at Block House Studios in Austin…the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program supports our series… For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

State Parks: Rock Garden Trail

Monday, January 28th, 2013

Rock Garden Trail, image from

Rock Garden Trail, image from

This is Passport to Texas

There was a ribbon cutting at Palo Duro Canyon recently that opened up the 2.38 mile Rock Garden Trails. And our state park Guide Bryan Frasier says, the trail climbs 600 feet straight up in elevation…

44— In fact, it connects up with the Rylander Fortress Cliffs Trail and opens up a whole other six plus miles of trails that were previously inaccessible. But, the view that can be had at from the rim on the Fortress Cliffs side is spectacular. So, it’s significant in that it takes what’s a wonderful canyon with its group facilities and cabins that were built by the CCC and it adds to it. Now, you can go across the canyon – go from the bed of the canyon – up the back side in elevation and see the canyon in a whole new angle and a whole new angle and whole new light through this new rock garden trail. It’s great for biking and it’s great for hiking. So, check it out as a whole other way to enjoy what it already one of the finest parks anywhere.

Thanks, Bryan.

Find more information about Palo Duro SP and its trails at

That’s our show for today…with funding provided by Chevrolet, supporting outdoor recreation in Texas; because there’s life to be done.

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

TPW TV: A Biologist Living the Dream

Friday, January 25th, 2013

Desert Bighorn Sheep with Transmitter

Desert Bighorn Sheep with Transmitter

This is Passport to Texas

This month on the Texas Parks and Wildlife TV Series, producer, Bruce Beirmann, introduces us to a wildlife biologist who is living his dream on Elephant Mountain.

My name is Scott Lerich, and I’m a wildlife biologist here at Elephant Mountain Wildlife Management Area.

So, the story highlights, what does a biologist do at a Wildlife Management area?

I do just about anything that needs to be done.

And it’s incredibly diverse.

I’m responsible for conducting the baseline inventories on the property, which entails monitoring all the animal and plant life to the extent possible.

All the way up to capturing and transferring Desert Bighorn Sheep from one area to another to help repopulate.

The original herd of Bighorns were brought here in 1987 – we had 20 that were released here. And, in the last few years, those numbers have reached over a hundred animals.

He’s just a very well-balanced, interesting, educated guy.

I’m very lucky to be able not only work here, but also live here. It’s literally a chance of a lifetime for a wildlife biologist.

And there’s not too many people who get to do that in Texas.

They sure don’t. Thanks, Bruce.

See the show during the week of January 27 on a PBS station near you…checks your local listings. You can also look for it on the TPW YouTube Channel.

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