ATHENS—Texas Parks and Wildlife Department has scheduled a public meeting to give anglers the opportunity to comment on a proposed regulation change for blue and channel catfish at Lake Tawakoni.
The meeting will take place at 7 p.m. Monday, November 30, in the Family Life Center of First Methodist Church at 1555 East Quinlan Parkway in Quinlan.
The regulation being considered is a no-minimum length limit, 25-fish daily bag limit in any combination (blue or channel) of which no more than seven fish 20 inches and greater may be retained and only two fish can be 30 inches or greater in length. This regulation is designed to increase the abundance of fish over 30 inches, or about 10 pounds, by reducing the harvest of fish 20 inches and longer.
Lake Tawakoni’s blue catfish fishery is the state’s premier trophy catfish fishery. Angler surveys suggest the harvest of blue catfish has increased in the past five years. Investigations indicate that almost 60 percent of all blue catfish kept by anglers from June 2013 to May 2014 were 20 inches and larger. Reducing harvest of this size range of fish is expected to ultimately increase the abundance of fish 30 inches and longer by approximately 14 percent.
Angler support for reducing harvest of larger blue catfish was evaluated through the Lake Tawakoni Catfish Angler Survey from June 2013 through May 2014. The vast majority of anglers (85 percent) favored reducing harvest of larger blue catfish in exchange for increased opportunities to catch more large fish in the future.