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Media Contact: Steve Lightfoot, 512-389-4701, steve.lightfoot@tpwd.texas.gov [SL]

TPWD Website: http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us

TPWD News Release — Feb. 28, 2005

TPWD Seeking Input about Proposed Regulation Changes

AUSTIN, Texas — The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is encouraging the public to provide input about a slate of proposed changes in hunting and fishing regulations.

Each year, TPWD considers regulation changes to achieve resource-management objectives and maximize outdoor recreation opportunities consistent with good stewardship.

Among the most prominent proposals being considered is a continuation of special buck-deer harvest regulations in six Post Oak Savannah counties. Based upon findings from a 3-year experiment in those counties, biologists believe the restrictions are helping create a healthy deer population. For the 2005-06 hunting season, TPWD is proposing to add a second buck to the bag limit in counties with the special antler restrictions. Hunters would be allowed to take two bucks, but no more than one of them could have an inside spread of 13 inches or greater. The proposal would also expand the coverage to 15 additional surrounding counties with similar deer population issues.

The department will also be seeking public comment about a proposal to expand the “managed lands” concept to include quail. For many years, TPWD has used the Managed Lands Deer Program to encourage sound habitat management across white-tailed deer ranges. In January, TPWD announced plans to expand the program to include mule deer and lesser prairie chicken.

“While we were discussing how to implement the managed lands concept with respect to lesser prairie chicken, someone remarked that we should also include quail,” said Mike Berger, Director of the Wildlife Division, “and I thought it’d be a good idea to take it to public hearings and see what people think.”

According to the proposal, landowners with a department-approved management plan for quail would agree to a harvest recommendation and to perform a minimum of five department-recommended habitat management practices that benefit quail. In return, hunters on the property would be allowed to harvest as many as 30 quail per day.

Following is a summary of proposed changes:

Proposed Hunting Regulation Changes

White-tailed Deer

Mule Deer

Turkey

Lesser Prairie Chicken

General

Proposed Fishing Regulation Changes

Lake Nasworthy (Tom Green County)

North and South Arms of the Concho River (Tom Green County)

Toledo Bend Reservoir

Proposed Coastal Fishing Regulation Changes

Public comment about these issues and others of interest may be made to TPWD, Regulatory Proposals Public Comment, 4200 Smith School Road, 78744, by phoning (800) 792-1112 or by visiting the Web site (http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/) beginning March 7 *. Comment is also welcome at any of the following public meetings.

TPWD Public Hearing Schedule — All meetings begin at 7 p.m.
DateCityLocation
March 9ShermanCounty Courthouse, West Courtroom, 2nd floor, 100 W. Houston St.
March 9SeguinSeguin Court House, 101 E. Court St.
March 9AlpineSchool Auditorium, AISD Administration Building, 704 W. Sul Ross Ave.
March 10ParisCounty Courthouse, 231 Lamar Ave.
March 10HempsteadCounty Road & Bridge, 775 Business 290
March 10Van HornVan Horn Community Center, 400 Jones St.
March 14Nacogdoches101 W. Main, District Court Room
March 14Pampa218 N. Russell, Gray County Courthouse
March 14LaGrangeLa Grange Fire Hall, 155 E. Colorado
March 14Wichita FallsNW Texas Field & Stream Assoc. 2005 SW Parkway
March 15ChildressChildress County Courthouse, Commissioner’s Courtroom, 100 Ave. E NW
March 15JeffersonCounty Courthouse Annex, 114 W. Austin St., Room 210
March 16SouthlakeCity of Southlake Office Bldg. 3rd Floor Training Room, 1400 Main St.
March 16New BostonCounty Courthouse, Central Jury Room, 1710 Bowie Drive
March 16AspermontCourthouse Community Meeting Room, Hwy 83
March 16VictoriaPatti Dodson Health Center, 2805 N. Navarro
March 17San AngeloAngelo State University M.I.R. Center, 7945 Grape Creek Road
March 17LampasasCounty Courthouse, District Court Room
March 17DalhartDallum County Courthouse, 2nd Floor, 414 Denver
March 21Port IsabelCommunity Center, 213 Yturria
March 21PlainsPlains Community Building
March 21Sulphur SpringsCounty Courthouse, 118 Church St.
March 21DickinsonDickinson TPWD 1502 FM 517 East
March 21Ft. StocktonSmall Community Building, 109 Rooney St.
March 22Kennedy303 W. Main, Kennedy City Hall Auditorium
March 22Kerrville700 Main, Kerr County Courthouse, Court Room 2
March 22AndrewsCourthouse Annex, 215 NW 1st St.

* Correction, March 3, 2005: The date of on-line comment, originally March 4, has been changed to March 7. (Return to corrected item.)

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