Texas Fish & Game Magazine – Our Story
Texas Fish & Game is the largest and most popular outdoor publication in the Lone Star State. No other publication matches our coverage of hunting, fishing, guns, gear, tackle, conservation, outdoor news, and wildlife subjects. Our editorial cadre includes the best outdoor writers in the Lone Star State—all experts in their respective fields. This is the sportsman’s one-stop resource for information and education on Texas’ outdoors.
Owners Roy and Ardia Neves have been a part of the magazine from the beginning.
From the start, Texas Fish & Game had an ambitious plan: to become the No. 1 authority on the Texas outdoors. A tall order, given that this meant becoming the best source for Texas hunting, saltwater fishing, and freshwater fishing, as well as trapping, boating, and conservation.
In 1984, the Neves were running the largest weekly newspaper in Texas, The Highlander, located in Marble Falls. Marble Falls businessman Bill Bray, who, like Roy and Ardia, was an avid outdoorsman, owned the paper. Since The Highlander’s home base was the 1800-square mile area surrounding the Highland Lakes region on the edge of the Hill Country, the newspaper featured extensive fishing and hunting coverage.
When a quarterly outdoors insert called The Highland Lakes Sportsman proved successful for The Highlander, Bray asked Roy and Ardia along with Highlander outdoor editor Marvin Spivey to help transform it into a monthly magazine.
Christened Texas Fish & Game in May 1984, the new magazine started with fewer than 1000 paid subscriptions.
In its first year, circulation climbed steadily. To establish Texas Fish & Game’s credibility with its early advertisers, the publishers took an unusual step for a new regional magazine. In 1985, Texas Fish & Game joined the Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC), the most respected authenticator of paid circulation for magazines and newspapers throughout the world.
The first year Texas Fish & Game was officially audited, its paid circulation was 20,000. Over the next five years, subscriptions and newsstand sales continued to rise until circulation reached 70,000. In 1991, Texas Fish & Game merged with Texas Fisherman. The combination of the two similar subscriber lists pushed Texas Fish & Game’s circulation over 90,000.
In 1996, the Neves along with Ron and Stephanie Ward bought Texas Fish & Game from Bray. It is currently the largest independently owned outdoor magazine in the country.
Today, despite circulation declines at virtually every major magazine and newspaper, Texas Fish & Game’s ABC audited paid circulation hovers near 100,000.
Texas Fish & Game is the only independent Texas outdoor magazine to ever exceed 100,000 in circulation, and shares that status with Texas Monthly, the only other independent Texas magazine in any category to get there. For a six-year period beginning in the late 1980s, Texas Fish & Game led the nation with 98 percent growth rate. A cover story in Folio, a magazine industry periodical, documented this rare feat.
This website is dedicated to continuing that legacy of excellence.