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Media Contact: Craig Bonds, (903) 566-1615, ext. 202; craig.bonds@tpwd.texas.gov

June 22, 2010

Anglers and Biologists to Meet in Athens August 7–8

Alton Jones to speak at Saturday evening dinner

ATHENS—Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) Inland Fisheries biologists will host a meeting with anglers interested in learning more about fisheries management in Texas at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center in Athens on Saturday, August 7.

The meeting will include an angler-biologist fishing tournament on Lake Athens Sunday morning that will feature demonstrations of fish-friendly tournament weigh-in procedures and fish care.

BASS Elite Series professional angler Alton Jones of Waco will address the group at the Saturday evening dinner.

“Fisheries biologists and anglers share many common interests and concerns,” said meeting organizer Craig Bonds, TPWD’s Inland Fisheries regional director for East Texas. “We all want to make fishing the best it can be in Texas, and anglers have played, and will continue to play, a significant role in improving fish habitat in Texas reservoirs, reporting and removing invasive species and implementing best fish-care practices designed to conserve the resource and improve fishing.”

The meeting’s goals are to provide a forum for anglers and fisheries biologists to interact and communicate with each other, provide examples of previous collaborative fish habitat improvement projects and opportunities for future work, and communicate the latest information on proper fish care.

Saturday morning sessions will feature examples of angler-biologist collaboration on a variety of projects from fish habitat enhancement on Lake Holbrook to fish attractor projects in Central Texas reservoirs to giant salvinia removal on Sam Rayburn Reservoir.

Afternoon sessions will detail examples of possible future projects as well as information on the Toyota ShareLunker program, treating largemouth bass for overinflated swim bladders and methods for keeping bass healthy after being caught.

The Sunday fishing tournament on Lake Athens, adjacent to the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center, will allow biologists and anglers to fish competitively with and against each other, but the main purpose will be to demonstrate how to handle and release fish in order to assure maximum survival of tournament-caught bass.

Anglers do not have to participate in the tournament to attend the Saturday meeting.

Preregistration is required since lunch and dinner will be furnished on Saturday. To obtain a meeting schedule and registration form, contact Jimmie Green at the TPWD Inland Fisheries office in Tyler: (903) 566-1615, ext. 200; jimmie.green@tpwd.texas.gov, or visit http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/visitorcenters/tffc/calendar.

2010-06-22


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