TPWD Print-Friendly Page: http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/newsmedia/releases/print.phtml?req=20060911a

Media Contact: Aaron Reed, 512-389-8046 [AR]

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

TPWD News Release — Sept. 11, 2006

Second Round of Public Meetings Slated for Spotted Seatrout Management in South Texas

BROWNSVILLE, Texas — Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Coastal Fisheries biologists will host a second round of public meetings in late September to discuss regional management options for the Lower Laguna Madre spotted seatrout fishery.

Meetings are slated for:

All meetings begin at 7 p.m. and are open to anyone interested in spotted seatrout management.

The meetings will include a presentation of spotted seatrout trends in the Lower Laguna Madre, description of the regional management concept and information about various management options.

The management options being analyzed are various reductions in bag limit, increases in minimum size limit and combinations of these for the Lower Laguna Madre only.

The meetings will then be opened-up for comment and discussion.

A coast-wide spotted seatrout stock assessment completed by TPWD in April delivered mostly good news about the ever-popular game fish. Stocks overall are doing extremely well in Texas; however, in the Lower Laguna Madre, sampling data and models show a clear downward trend in relative abundance and spawning stock biomass of spotted seatrout.

The bay still boasts catch rates as high as or higher than any other bays on the Texas coast.

“This is not a fishery in crisis,” said Randy Blankinship, TPWD ecosystem leader for the Lower Laguna Madre. “There is no danger of spotted seatrout stocks collapsing; it’s more a question of reversing these trends and getting a high quality fishery back to the very high quality fishery we have historically known.”

For more information about the meetings, call the TPWD Brownsville Field Station at (956) 350-4490.

###

———
On the Net: