Regulations Committee

Wednesday, 9:00 a.m., Jan. 21, 1998

Commission Hearing Room
4200 Smith School Road
Austin, TX 78744
Item
No.
Subject Public Hearing
Agenda Item No.
  Approval of the Committee Minutes from the previous meeting.  
  Summary of Minutes  
1. Chairman's Charges (Oral Presentation) Committee Only
2. Marine Safety Officer Certification
Staff: Carlos Vaca
Committee Only
3. Raptor Proclamation
Staff: John Herron
8
4. Scientific Breeder Proclamation
Staff: Jerry Cooke
7
5. Mandatory Boater Education Program
Staff: Steve Hall
5
6. Crab Limited Entry
Staff: Robin Riechers
Committee Only
7. 1998-1999 Shrimp Fishery Proclamation
Staff: Paul Hammerschmidt
Committee Only
8. Health Certification of Native Shellfish
Staff: Joedy Gray
9
9. 1998-1999 Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamation
Staff: Robert L. Cook, Phil Durocher, Paul Hammerschmidt
Committee Only
10. Deer Management Permit
Staff: Jerry Cooke
Committee Only
11. Amendments to the Public Lands Proclamation and Candidate State Parks for 1998-1999 Public Hunts
Staff: Herb Kothmann
Committee Only
12. Creation of a Nongame Permit
Staff: Matt Wagner
Committee Only
13. Other Business  

Summary of Minutes
Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission
Regulations Committee
November 5, 1997

BE IT REMEMBERED that heretofore on the 5th day of November 1997, there came to be heard matters under the regulatory authority of the Parks and Wildlife Commission of Texas, in the commission hearing room of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Headquarters complex, Austin, Travis County, Texas, beginning at 2:55 p.m., to wit:

I. COMMISSION ATTENDANCE

Lee M. Bass
Ray Clymer
Nolan Ryan
Richard Heath
Susan Howard-Chrane
Mickey Burleson
Ernest Angelo, Jr.
John Avila, Jr.

II. OPENING STATEMENT:

Andrew Sansom, Executive Director, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, read the opening statement into the record.

III. APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Chairman Lee Bass began the proceedings by entertaining a motion by Commissioner Burleson to accept the minutes of the August 26, 1997 meeting of the Regulations Committee. The motion to approve the minutes was seconded by Commissioner Burleson.

IV. THE FOLLOWING ITEMS WERE PRESENTED FOR COMMITTEE ACTION:

1. BRIEFING ­ Chairman's Charges

Presenter ­ Andrew Sansom

Chairman Bass began the proceedings by asking Andrew Sansom to brief the Commission on their charges. Mr. Sansom noted that 35 percent of the actions that necessitated from the passage of the Omnibus bill would be accomplished through the proclamation process that begins at this meeting and ends at the spring meeting. Also, the sunset process begun under Commission's leadership will focus on administrative procedures. These procedures do not require Commission approval but staff will keep the Commission apprised of the process. The goal is the reduce them as much as possible. Commissioner Burleson inquired about how many of those were Commission policies. Mr. Sansom said Commission policies comprise a small percentage. Because of work done by the policy and planning committee of the Commission, a book with all the policies can be circulated among Commissioners for their review and guidance.

2. BRIEFING ­ Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamations

Presenters ­ Ken Kurzawski, Hal Osburn, and Dr. Jerry Cooke

Chairman Bass called for the second item of business. Mr. Bill Provine of the Inland Fisheries Division introduced Mr. Ken Kurzawski to present an overview of the regulatory issues pertaining to freshwater angling. The two major issues are protection of trophy bass populations and management of fisheries with both white bass and hybrid striped bass. Increased protection of trophy bass is an issue that arose from discussions on live bait during the last regulatory cycle. Anglers, especially those that fish Lake Fork, were concerned that too many trophy bass are being harvested. Staff is considering changing harvest regulations at Lake Fork to a 14 to 24 inch slot length limit and use of a tag to harvest of trophy bass. The tag and slot limit change will reduce harvest and allow us to collect data on the fish that are harvested. Lake Ray Roberts and Monticello are also being considered for 14 to 24 inch slot length limits without the use of a trophy tag. Another major issue is distinguishing between white bass and hybrid striped bass when both fish are present in the same reservoir. This does not appear to be causing any resource problems, but it is a problem for anglers and wardens alike as length and bag limits for these two fish differ. Staff has proposed the same minimum length limit (10 inches) for both fish, a combined daily bag of 25, and allowing the harvest of only 5 fish per day that are 18 inches or greater. These regulations would be evaluated to determine if identification problems were alleviated and sufficient harvest of quality-sized striped bass was maintained. Also, additional regulations to improve angling quality are being considered for Lakes Madisonville and Tankersley. Chairman Bass had some questions on the specifics of the tag such as procedures on issuing the tag both from the customer and vendor standpoint. Staff responded the tags would be readily available at POS outlets and there are numerous outlets on and around Lake Fork. The tag will probably be separate piece of paper, and license vendors can electronically transmit to us the information required for the issuance of bonus tags. There is potentially a $0.96 transaction fee that may have to be passed on to the anglers. Commissioner Burleson inquired about any information on how much additional money is brought into businesses by persons buying licenses. Staff was not aware of any figures on this. Commissioner Ryan inquired how the tag would function for tournaments. Staff responded it would be similar to the current situation with the added step of obtaining an additional tag if you wished to possess another trophy bass. Commissioner Ryan also asked about impacts of tournaments on spawning bass. Staff responded that although fish caught and released are impacted no negative impacts on the whole populations have ever been detected. Chairman Bass asked about the cost of obtaining information on harvest by tags, and Mr. Phil Durocher, Inland Fisheries Division Director, said the tag would be very cost effective. Chairman Bass also asked how anglers would feel about having to pay a transaction fee for bonus tags. Staff said they need to investigate that further. Commissioner Heath asked for clarification on how the tag would be issued, and staff provided that.

Mr. Hal Osburn, Policy Director of the Coastal Fisheries Division, briefed the Committee on issues concerning coastal management. These topics included: 1) new legislatively mandated crab license management program which will establish a license limitation system for the commercial crab fishery that creates a commercial crab license and associated fees, sets eligibility for entrance into the fishery, creates a review board to look at appeals cases, establishes license suspension/revocation and buyback guidelines. Mr. Osburn commented that the Coastal Fisheries Division has done some significant outreach efforts with the crab industry leaders who helped develop this legislation. He also related that seven workshops would be held to present the various proposals relative to the crab license limitation program. In addition to the license limitation provisions, a new crab trap marking system will be presented by which each crabber will be assigned a unique number that will be used on each crab trap used by that fisherman. One of the major complaints of the industry is theft of their crabs. This new marking system should help reduce that. 2) The Coastal Fisheries Division is also working with industry in regards to the degradable panel rule that the Commission put in place last year requiring jute and sisal twine. Industry members had asked for additional options, and staff is evaluating the use of light-gauge wire for this purpose. 3) Additional outreach included shrimp management scoping conflict resolutions in the near-shore gulf -- Mr. Osburn was not confident that this issue would be resolved enough to offer new rule proposals; 4) Seabob shrimp is another issue being evaluated. Industry wants a bigger net to harvest these shrimp, but it is not clear whether the opportunity for harvest of seabobs can be maximized without compromising other shrimp conservation goals; 5) Coastal staff has also scoped the bait-fish issue. Last year the commission adopted a temporary exemption for taking live fish for bait (primarily croaker). The rule worked and was apparently doing will, without causing additional abuse. Consequently, staff will probably be requesting an extension of the exemption and include an exemption for ribbonfish; 6) finally, staff will probably recommend changing the minimum size of vermilion snapper to coincide with limits established by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council. This change would reduce angler confusion and improve law enforcement. Mr. Osburn asked if there were any questions. There were none.

The chair recognized Mr. Jerry Cooke, Director of the Upland Wildlife Ecology Program. Mr. Cooke addressed regulatory issues that originated both from the public and from within the department. Mr. Cooke began by proposing to eliminate the LAMPS program from certain East Texas counties where it is underutilized; to rearrange the structure of the antlerless harvest in deep East Texas; and to open a white-tailed deer season in two Panhandle counties. Mr. Cooke discussed the nuances of the relationship between buck bag limits and hunting license tags as a preface to proposing the elimination of the swing tag and the imposition of a two-buck bag limit in the counties where the swing tag is currently offered. Mr. Cooke also mentioned an anomaly concerning the take of buck deer in more than one one-buck county. A discussion ensued among Mr. Cooke, Chief Operating Officer Robert L. Cook, Law Enforcement Director James Robertson, Mr. Sansom, Commissioner Heath, and Chairman Bass about the history and nature of the tagging system presently in use and potential alternatives to it. Lynn Lange of the Licensing Program was queried about the potential logistical impacts of changing the tagging system.

Mr. Cooke then continued the overview of potential regulatory changes by proposing to extend the squirrel season in 51 East Texas counties; to adjust seasons for the take of wildlife by means of falconry; and an external proposal to prohibit the hunting of turkey by means of rifles; and advised the Commission that legislative action had removed the status of elk and aoudad as game animals. Chairman Bass and Commissioner Burleson asked questions concerning the technical implications of removing the game animal status of elk. Mr. Cooke proposed regulations to implement bighorn sheep hunting on private lands and an increase in the alligator hide tag fee.

Mr. Cooke then addressed legislative action affecting deer management and the tenor of opinion amongst constituent groups and the public concerning the department's implementation of authority granted by the legislature. Commissioners Angelo, Heath, and Burleson inquired as to the nature of public sentiment regarding deer management generally. Commissioner Angelo inquired as the possibility of opening a mule deer season in a portion of Andrews County. Chairman Bass, Commissioner Angelo, Commissioner Burleson, Mr. Sansom, Mr. Cook, and Mr. Cooke discussed the scoping process and ways to improve attendance at the scoping meetings.

3. ACTION ­ Proposed Scientific Breeder Regulations

Presenter ­ Dr. Jerry Cooke

Mr. Jerry Cooke, Director of the Upland Wildlife Ecology Program, began by outlining the particulars of legislative action that impacted the department's Scientific Breeder regulations, and the agency's proposed modifications of the regulations in response to both the legislature's actions and Commission's policy to reduce unnecessary regulatory presence. Commissioner Ryan asked several questions concerning the tagging of breeder deer and nursing facilities. Mr. Robertson, Director of Law Enforcement, was consulted about enforceability of the proposed changes. Commissioner Burleson asked about eligibility requirements for permit issuance. Chairman Bass entertained a motion from Commissioner Ryan to publish the proposed regulations in the Texas Register for public comment. Commissioner Burleson seconded the motion, which passed unanimously.

4. BRIEFING ­ Proposed Nongame Regulations

Presenter ­ John Herron

Mr. John Herron, Nongame and Urban Wildlife Program Director, provided background on the history of nongame regulation and introduced Mr. Matt Wagner, Nongame Program Leader. Mr. Wagner presented information the department had gathered on commercial activities involving nongame species, as well as the results of the department's canvass of various constituencies with an interest in those activities and their views concerning possible regulations. Mr. Wagner then presented three regulatory options to the Committee. Commissioner Burleson expressed concern that certain nongame species could be in danger, and asked about the status of the Terrestrial Wildlife Database. Mr. Wagner then finished his overview of regulatory options and Mr. Herron provided concluding remarks.

5. ACTION ­ Proposed Falconry Regulations

Presenter ­ John Herron

Mr. John Herron, Nongame and Urban Wildlife Program Director, outlined legislative actions which created the opportunity and necessity to revise existing regulations concerning the use of raptors for falconry purposes. Mr. Herron then proposed to: eliminate the nonresident falconry permit, liberalize the educational use of raptors, allow the sale of captive-bred raptors, and move the hunting provisions for falconry from the Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamation to the Raptor Proclamation. Chairman Bass asked about the implications of the trapping regulations on falcon species. Chairman Bass then entertained a motion by Commissioner Angelo to publish the proposed regulations in the Texas Register for public comment. Commissioner Avila seconded the motion, which passed unanimously.

6. ACTION ­ Harmful or Potentially Harmful Exotic Fish, Shellfish and Aquatic Plants Repeal and New Rules

Presenter ­ Joedy Gray

Chairman Bass called for the sixth item of business, proposed regulations concerning Harmful or Potentially Harmful Exotic Fish, Shellfish and Aquatic Plants. Mr. Joedy Gray, staff support specialist with the Inland Fisheries Division, presented proposed regulation changes to the Harmful or Potentially Harmful Exotic Fish, Shellfish and Aquatic Plants Proclamation. Proposals included 1) adopting by rule a Memorandum of Understanding between the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission (TNRCC) and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD); 2) addition of the families Synbranchidae (rice eels) and Anguillidae except for Anguilla rostrata to the prohibited fish species list, and the addition of definitions for the terms "disease", "disease-free"' "waste" and "water in the state"; 3) requirement that applicants for amended and renewal exotic species permits demonstrate that they either possess or have applied for and are diligently pursuing the appropriate authorization or exemptions from the TNRCC if the facility is designed to discharge waste into or adjacent to water in the state; 4) provide means to allow the sale of Pacific blue shrimp (Penaeus stylirostris) under specific criteria; 5) establish methodologies for quarantine of pathogen-infected exotic shellfish and immediate notification of the Department in the event of mortalities in cultured shellfish stocks. Dr. Larry McKinney, Senior Director for Aquatic Resources, commented on the portion of the proposal covering sampling or testing shrimp farm waters for disease. Dr. McKinney said protection of the resource, input from the industry and disease experts, and use of department resources were all considered in its development. Commissioner Burleson inquired about the location of the shrimp farms and risks of disease releases during catastrophes such as hurricanes. Staff responded that all the shrimp farms are in the coastal area and they have to have an emergency plan on file before they are issued a permit. Chairman Bass commented that staff should continue to work with the industry on these issues and Dr. McKinney agreed that is an approach the staff plans on taking. Mr. Gray requested permission from the Committee to carry the proposed rules to the full Commission for adoption. Commissioner Burleson moved approval to take to the full Commission, and Commissioner Angelo seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

7. ACTION ­ Restricted Wild Animal Proclamation

Presenter ­ David Sinclair

Chairman Bass called for the seventh item of business. Mr. David Sinclair, the Director of Wildlife Enforcement Programs for the Law Enforcement Division, presented a rule that repealed regulations on restricted wild animal. Senate Bill 97 enacted by the Seventy-fourth Texas Legislature removed the statutory authority delegated to the Commission concerning possession of dangerous wild animals and gave that authority to County Commissioner Courts. There was a two-year period between the enactment of the bill and repeal to give the counties time to enact rules to regulate the possession of dangerous wild animals. Mr. Sinclair requested permission from the Committee to carry the proposed rules to the full Commission for adoption. Chairman Bass requested comments and there were none. Commissioner Angelo moved approval to take to the full Commission, and Commissioner Avila seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

8. ACTION ­ Harmful or Potentially Harmful Exotic Fish, Shellfish and Aquatic Plants Proclamation

Presenter- Dr. Earl Chilton

Chairman Bass called for the eighth item of business. Dr. Earl Chilton, senior staff specialist in Inland Fisheries Division, presented a proposed change to the harmful or potentially harmful exotic fish, shellfish, and aquatic plant proclamation that would prohibit the harvest of triploid grass carp from public waters where a valid triploid grass carp permit is in effect. Triploid grass carp are stocked in public waters by river authorities, water districts, etc., to control vegetation. Harvest of grass carp from these waters reduces the effectiveness of this method of controlling vegetation. Grass carp could still be removed, if necessary, by TPWD staff or by persons acting as agents of TPWD. Dr. Chilton requested permission from the Committee to publish the proposed rule changes in Texas Register for review and comment. Chairman Bass requested comments and there were none. Commissioner Ryan moved to send the proposed rule changes to the Texas Register for public comment, and Commissioner Howard-Chrane seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

9. ACTION ­Boater Education Program Rules

Presenter ­ Steve Hall

Chairman Bass called for the ninth item of business, proposed regulations concerning the new mandatory boater education program regulations. Mr. Steve Hall, Education Director, presented the proposed regulations, making a recommendation that they be published in the December issue of the Texas Register for review and comment. The rules addressed the laws enacted in H.B. 966 passed by the 75th Texas Legislature. Highlights of the mandatory program include: 1) a requirement of course completion for those born on or after September 1st of 1984, 2) a course fee of $10.00 by volunteers and $5.00 by employees, 3) an exemption for those persons 18 years of age and older and those accompanied by those persons 18 years of age and older, and 4) the law applying to operators of motorboats with 10 hp motor or better and windblown vessels over 14 feet in length. Hall further explained that the proposed rules would: 1) grant authority to the department to approve courses for certification, 2) allow department to administer reciprocal agreements with other boating safety entities, 3) establish criteria for course completion, 4) establish an equivalency exam process, 5) set a minimum age of certification at 12 years of age, and 6) establish an exemption for those who have completed the "voluntary course," currently administered by the department. Mr. Hall then introduced the new mandatory boater education coordinator, Mr. Tim Spice. Mr. Sansom introduced Kurt Kalkomey with Boat Texas, a key partner in boater education. Mr. Hall introduced the fact that Lee Couch and the Boating Trades Association of Texas played an integral role in the passage of the legislation. After a few clarifications from Commissioner Clymer, Chairman Bass made several positive comments and entertained a motion. Commissioner Clymer moved to send the proposed rule changes to the Texas Register for public comment, and Commissioner Howard-Chrane seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

10. BRIEFING ­ Endangered Species Act

Presenter ­ Dr. Gary Graham

Chairman Bass noted that this was the last item of business. There was a lack of time to address this item and it was delayed until a later meeting.

V. OTHER BUSINESS

None.

VI. ADJOURNMENT

There being no further business, Chairman Bass adjourned the November 5, 1997 meeting of the Regulations Committee of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission at 5:30 p.m.


Committee Agenda Item No. 1
Presenter: Bob Cook

Regulations Committee
Briefing
Chairman's Charges
January 1998

(This item will be an oral presentation.)


Committee Agenda Item No. 2
Presenter: Carlos Vaca

Regulations Committee
Action
Marine Safety Enforcement Officer Certification
January 1998

I. Discussion: The passage of House Bill 966 by Seventy-fifth Legislature delegated to the Parks and Wildlife Commission the authority to establish standards for training and certifying marine safety enforcement officers who enforce any provision of Chapter 31, Texas Water Safety Act, or city ordinance or order of a commissioners court or a political subdivision of the state made or entered under Chapter 31. In addition, H.B. 966 authorizes the Commission to exempt specified peace officers from training and certification standards and to establish and collect a fee to recover the administrative costs associated with the certification process.

The Law Enforcement Division conducted a meeting on November 20, 1997 for the purpose of soliciting comments on a draft of the proposed regulations from law enforcement officers from other governmental entities currently enforcing provisions of the Texas Water Safety Act. The officers in attendance requested that the Department provide additional hours of basic training for officer certification and the creation of a course to certify instructors to deliver the marine safety enforcement officer training program within units of government outside the Department. The proposed regulations located at Exhibit A incorporate those suggestions by requiring the completion of the state boater education course prior to enrolling in the marine safety officer certification course and by providing for instructor training and certification.

II. Recommendation: The staff recommends the Regulations Commission adopt the following motion:

"The Regulations Committee of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission authorizes staff to publish proposed new 31 TAC §§55.801- 55.808, concerning the marine safety enforcement officer certification program, and new 31 TAC §53.16, concerning fees to cover the administrative cost of providing the training and certification, in the Texas Register for public comment."

Attachments - 2

1. Exhibit A - Proposed Marine Safety Enforcement Officer Certification Regulations
2. Exhibit B - Proposed Fees


Committee Agenda Item No. 2
Exhibit A

Proposed Preamble

1. Introduction.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department proposes new §§55.801-55.808, concerning training and certification of marine safety enforcement officers. The new sections are necessary in order to implement the provisions of House Bill 966, enacted by the 75th Texas Legislature, which established mandatory boater education in this state. The new sections will function by establishing the certification criteria for persons to become marine safety officers and marine safety officer course instructors.

2. Fiscal Note.

Robert Macdonald, Wildlife Division regulations coordinator, has determined that for each of the first five years that the rules as proposed are in effect, there will be fiscal implications to state and local governments as a result of enforcing or administering the new sections. The proposed new sections would require a certification fee of $25 per peace officer, an instruction charge of $3 per student per hour, and provide for special course fee not to exceed $300 per course. The department cannot quantify costs to other governmental subdivisions, as such costs are dependent upon the number of peace officers a given governmental subdivision might enroll in the certification process.

3. Public Benefit- Cost Note.

Mr. Macdonald also has determined that for each of the first five years the rules as proposed are in effect:

(A) The public benefit anticipated as a result of enforcing the rules as proposed will be the presence of trained peace officers on the public waters of the state to enforce boating safety laws, thus increasing the safety of water-related recreational activities as well as reducing injuries, deaths, and property losses resulting from unsafe and unlawful boat operation.

(B) There will be no effect on small businesses and no additional economic costs to persons required to comply with the rules as proposed.

(C) The department has not filed a local impact statement with the Texas Workforce Commission as required by Government Code, §2001.022, as this agency has determined that the rules as proposed will not impact local economies.

(D) The department has determined that there will not be a taking of private real property, as defined by Government Code, Chapter 2007, as a result of the proposed rules.

4. Request for Public Comments.

Comments on the proposed rules may be submitted to Carlos Vaca, Director of Water Safety Enforcement, Law Enforcement Division, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, 4200 Smith School Road, Austin, Texas 78744; (512) 389-4624 or 1-800-792-1112.

5. Statutory Authority.

The new sections are proposed under Parks and Wildlife Code, §31.121, which gives the commission authority to adopt rules establishing standards for training and certifying marine safety enforcement officers, creating exemptions from training and certification requirements, and establishing fees to recover administrative costs associated with the certification process.

Marine Safety Enforcement Officer Certification

§55.801. Application. This subchapter shall apply to any peace officer, as defined by Article 2.12, Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, who enforces any provision of Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 31, or enforces any provision, regulation, resolution, ordinance, or order adopted pursuant to Parks and Wildlife Code, §31.092.

§55.802. Definitions. The following words and terms, when used in this subchapter, shall have the following meanings, except where the context clearly indicates otherwise.

Active duty peace officer - A peace officer holding a valid peace officer license from the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Education (TCLEOSE) and a valid peace officer commission issued by an authorized governmental entity of the State of Texas.

Commission - The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission

Department - The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

§55.803. General Rules.

(a) To be eligible for certification as a marine safety enforcement officer, a person must:

(1) be an active duty peace officer;

(2) hold a Texas boater education certificate; and

(3) successfully complete the marine safety enforcement officer training course and marine safety enforcement officer examination.

(b) To retain certification a marine safety enforcement officer must comply with all reporting requirements as set forth in §55.807 of this title (relating to Reporting Requirements).

(c) To instruct the marine safety enforcement officer training course, a person must:

(1) be a certified marine safety enforcement officer;

(2) hold a TCLEOSE Instructor license; and

(3) successfully complete the marine safety enforcement officer instructor course and marine safety enforcement officer instructor examination.

§55.804. Marine Safety Enforcement Officer Course Standards.

(a) The marine safety enforcement officer course shall consist of the following instruction topics:

(1) provisions of the Texas Water Safety Act, Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 31;

(2) navigation rules;

(3) United States Coast Guard rules applicable to state waters;

(4) boater education requirements; and

(5) the reporting requirements of §55.807 of this title (relating to Reporting Requirements).

(b) The marine safety enforcement officer course is successfully completed when a peace officer has:

(1) attended a minimum of eight hours of prescribed instruction by a department certified marine safety enforcement officer instructor; and

(2) passed the department approved marine safety enforcement officer examination.

(c) Upon completion of a course, the instructor shall submit to the department a signed affidavit specifying for each student:

(1) the date(s) of instruction;

(2) the topics of instruction;

(3) the hours of instruction in each topic; and

(4) test score.

§55.805. Marine Safety Enforcement Officer Instructor Course Standards.

(a) The marine safety enforcement officer instructor course shall consist of the following instruction topics:

(1) provisions of the Texas Water Safety Act, Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 31;

(2) navigation rules;

(3) United States Coast Guard rules applicable to state waters;

(4) boater education requirements; and

(5) the reporting requirements of §55.807 of this title (relating to Reporting Requirements).

(b) The marine safety enforcement officer instructor course is successfully completed when a marine safety enforcement officer has:

(1) attended a minimum of 16 hours of instruction prescribed by the Game Warden Training Academy; and

(2) successfully completed the marine safety enforcement officer instructor examination prescribed by the Game Warden Training Academy.

(c) Upon completion of an instructor certification course, the course instructor shall submit to the department a signed affidavit specifying for each student:

(1) the date(s) of instruction;

(2) the topics of instruction;

(3) the hours of instructions in each topic; and

(4) test score.

§55.806. Exemptions. Commissioned game wardens are exempt from the requirements of this subchapter.

§55.807. Reporting Requirements.

(a) Marine safety enforcement officers shall report all investigations as required by Parks and Wildlife Code, §31.132, by completing and submitting to the department a Water Safety Incident Report(s).

(b) The department may summarily suspend the certification of a marine safety enforcement officer who fails to submit, fails to complete, or falsifies a report required under subsection (a) of this section.

§55.808. Fees. All applications shall be accompanied by the fees specified in Chapter 53 of this title (relating to Finance). All payments shall be in the form of a check, money order, or warrant made payable to the department. All fees are nonrefundable; however, an entity may substitute a qualified peace officer in place of a person named on an application.

This agency hereby certifies that the proposal has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be within the agency's authority to adopt.

Issued in Austin, Texas on

William D. Harvey, Ph.D.
Regulatory Coordinator
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
1-800-792-1112, extension 4642 or 512-389-4642


Committee Agenda Item No. 2
Exhibit B

Proposed Preamble

1. Introduction.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department proposes new §53.16, concerning fees schedules. New §53.16 is necessary to implement the fees to recover the administrative cost of training and certifying marine safety enforcement officers and marine safety enforcement officer course instructors. The new section will function to impose fees for peace officers seeking certification as marine safety enforcement officers or marine safety enforcement officer course instructors.

2. Fiscal Note.

Robert Macdonald, Wildlife Division regulations coordinator, has determined that for each of the first five years that the proposed new rule is in effect, there will be fiscal implications to state or local governments as a result of enforcing or administering the proposed new rule. A governmental entity seeking to have a peace officer trained and certified as a marine safety enforcement officer or marine safety enforcement officer course instructor will incur an enrollment cost of $25 per peace officer and a $3 per student per hour instruction charge.

3. Public Benefit - Cost Note.

Mr. Macdonald also has determined that for each of the first five years the amendment and new rule as proposed are in effect:

(A) The public benefit anticipated as a result of enforcing the rules as proposed will be the ability of the department to deliver a program that enhances the safety of all persons who participate in water-related recreation in this state.

(B) There will be no effect on small businesses. There are additional economic costs to persons required to comply with the rules as proposed; specifically, a $25 fee per peace officer enrolled for training and certification as a marine safety enforcement officer or marine safety enforcement course instructor, and $3 per student per hour instruction charge.

(C) The department has not filed a local impact statement with the Texas Workforce Commission as required by Government Code, §2001.022, as this agency has determined that the rule as proposed will not impact local economies.

(D) The department has determined that there will not be a taking of private property, as defined by Government Code, Chapter 2007, as a result of the proposed rule.

4. Request for Public Comments.

Comments on the proposed rules may be submitted to Carlos Vaca, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, 4200 Smith School Road, Austin, Texas 78744; (512) 389-4624 or 1-800-792-1112.

5. Statutory Authority.

The new section is proposed under the provisions of House Bill 966, Acts of the 75th Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 1997, which amended Parks and Wildlife Code, §31.121 to authorize the commission to establish and collect a fee to recover the administrative costs associated with the certification of marine safety enforcement officers.

The amendment and new section affect Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 31.

§53.16. Law Enforcement Training and Certification Fees. In addition to the enrollment fees below, the department shall impose an instruction charge of $3 per student per hour.

(1) The fee for certification as a marine safety enforcement officers is $25.

(2) The fee for certification as a marine safety enforcement officer instructor is $25.

This agency hereby certifies that the proposal has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be within the agency's authority to adopt.

Issued in Austin, Texas on

William D. Harvey, Ph.D.
Regulatory Coordinator
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
1-800-792-1112, extension 4642 or 512-389-4642


Committee Agenda Item No. 3
Presenter: John Herron

Regulations Committee
Action
Raptor Proclamation
January 1998

(This is Public Hearing Agenda Item No. 8.)


Committee Agenda Item No. 4
Presenter: Jerry Cooke

Regulations Committee
Action
Scientific Breeder Proclamation
January 1998

(This is Public Hearing Agenda Item No. 7.)


Committee Agenda Item No. 5
Presenter: Steve Hall

Regulations Committee
Action
Mandatory Boater Education Program
January 1998

(This is Public Hearing Agenda Item No. 5.)


Committee Agenda Item No. 6
Presenter: Robin Riechers

Regulations Committee
Action
Proposed Crab License Limitation Program
January 1998

I. Discussion: Responsibility for establishing provisions enabling a commercial crab fishery license limitation program is delegated to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 78, Mussels, Clams, and Crabs authorized by passage of House Bill 2542 in the 75th Legislature. Further provisions establishing changes in seasons, bag limits, means, and methods for taking wildlife resources is delegated to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61, Uniform Wildlife Regulatory Act (Wildlife Conservation Act of 1983).

Proposed rule changes include the creation of a Crab Fishery Proclamation, §58.201 - §58.210, which creates the elements of a crab license management program including rules to establish: a commercial crab fishing license, eligibility requirements to receive the license in the 1998-99 license year and subsequent years, provisions for transfer of licenses, the number of licenses an individual may possess, and rules regarding license requirements when commercial crab fishing. Additionally, suspension and revocation guidelines are established associated with flagrant violations defined in this Chapter. A Review Board, made up of 9 members distributed proportionally to historical crab trap tag holders, is created to review and advise the Department regarding appeal and hardship cases for eligibility into the license management program. The provisions for a license buyback program are established which allows the Department to purchase and retire commercial crab licenses in the future.

Proposed rule changes in the Finance Proclamation, §53.6 and §53.7, establish license fees, transfer fees, and duplicate license fees for resident and non-resident commercial crab fisherman's license. The reference to the commercial crab trap tag fee is removed because it will not be required with the issuance of a new license. In the Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamation, §65.78 Crabs and Ghost Shrimp, rules proposed define the marking requirements for commercial crab fishing devices, including crab lines and crab traps. The rules regarding marking of these devices, including gear tag placement and buoy marking, are designed to reduce conflict and aid enforcement of existing regulations.

The rule changes combine to create a crab fishery license management program and should provide increasing social and economic benefits for the crab fishery in Texas. The program should stabilize effort in the fishery, thus creating a more stable and economically viable industry. The program should also provide the mechanisms needed to ensure reduction of effort through time, allowing for the long-term recovery and protection of the crab fishery.

II. Recommendation: The staff recommends the Regulations Commission adopt the following motion:

"The Regulations Committee of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission authorizes staff to publish the proposed regulation changes in the Texas Register for the required 30-day public comment period and hold public hearings."

Attachments - 3

1. Exhibit A - Crab Fishery Proclamation
2. Exhibit B - Finance Proclamation
3. Exhibit C - Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamation, § 65.78. Crabs and Ghost Shrimp.


Committee Agenda Item No. 6
Exhibit A

Crab Fishery Proclamation

31 TAC Chapter 58. Oysters and Shrimp

Subchapter C. Statewide Crab Fishery Proclamation

§58.201. Crab License Management Program.

Delegation of Authority. The Commission delegates power and authority to the executive director to administer the Crab License Management Program.

§58.202. Definitions.

Coastal waters—All the salt water of this state (as defined in § 65.3 of this title (relating to Definitions)), including that portion of the Gulf of Mexico within the jurisdiction of the state extending nine nautical miles from the Gulf shoreline.

Crab—All species in the families Portunidae and Xanthidae.

Commercial crab fishing—Pursuing, taking, attempting to take, or landing crabs in this state for pay or for the purpose of sale, barter, or exchange.

Possess—The act of having in possession or control, keeping, detaining, restraining or holding.

§58.203. Licensing.

(a) A person may not engage in commercial crab fishing without a commercial crab fisherman's license.

§58.203. Licensing.

(a) A person may not engage in commercial crab fishing without a commercial crab fisherman's license; or

(b) a person may operate a boat bearing a commercial crab fisherman's license plate, ONLY if that person possesses on board the boat the following documentation:

(1) a commercial crab fisherman's license or a general commercial fisherman's license, and

(2) an original copy of an affidavit permitting the boat operator to fish the commercial crab fishing devices owned by the person to whom the commercial crab fisherman's license was issued. The affidavit must contain the date, signature of the licensee, and commercial crab license number which matches the commercial crab license plate number on the boat.

(c) A person operating a boat for the purpose of commercial crab fishing is not required to possess a commercial fishing boat license.

§58.204. License Expiration.

Licenses issued under authority of Parks and Wildlife Code Chapter 78 and this subchapter are valid only during the yearly period for which they are issued without regard to the date on which the licenses are acquired. Each yearly period begins on September 1 and extends through August 31 of the next year.

§58.205. Display of License.

(a) A commercial crab fisherman's license plate issued under this subchapter must be prominently displayed as to be clearly visible from both sides of the boat.

(b) No more than one set of commercial crab fisherman's license plates may be on board a commercial crab fishing boat at any one time.

§58.206. Issuance and Renewal of Commercial Crab Fisherman's License.

(a) Beginning September 1, 1998, the Department will issue a commercial crab fisherman's license only to a person who documents to the satisfaction of the Department that the person concurrently held each of the following licenses and tags during the period September 1, 1995 through November 13, 1996:

(1) General commercial fisherman's license;

(2) Commercial fishing boat license; and

(3) Commercial crab trap tags.

(b) After August 31, 1999, the Commission may renew a commercial crab fisherman's license only if the person seeking to renew the license held the license to be renewed during the previous license year.

(c) Individuals not meeting the requirements set forth in subsections (a) and (b) this section may appeal to the Crab License Management Review Board as provided in §78.103 Parks and Wildlife Code.

(d) Department records will be used to verify all information supplied by or pertaining to the applicant's history in the crab fishery or will be used in cases where the applicant has not provided adequate information for proper consideration for license issuance or renewal.

§58.207. License Transfer.

(a) Except as provided in this section, a commercial crab fisherman's license may not be transferred from one person to another before September 1, 2001.

(b) A commercial crab fisherman's license may be transferred at any time, by sale or otherwise to an heir or devisee of the deceased holder of the commercial crab fisherman's license, but only if the heir or devisee is a person who in the absence of a will would be entitled to all or a portion of the deceased's property.

§58.208. Limit on Number of Licenses Held; Designated License Holder.

(a) Except as provided by Subsection (b), no person may hold or directly control more than three commercial crab fisherman's licenses.

(b) A commercial crab fisherman's license must be issued to an individual. A person other that an individual who wishes to retain or seeks to renew a license must designate an individual to whom the license will be issued.

§58.209. License Suspension and Revocation.

(a) The Executive Director, after notice and the opportunity for a hearing, may suspend a commercial crab fisherman's license if the license holder or any other operator of the licensed vessel is convicted of one or more flagrant offenses totaling two flagrant offenses for the license holder or any other operator of the licensed vessel. The suspension may be for:

(1) six months, if:

(A) the date of each offense is within a 12-consecutive-month period beginning not earlier than September 1, 1998; and

(B) the license holder has not previously had a commercial crab fisherman's license suspended under this section; or

(2) 12 months, if the date of each offense is within a 12-consecutive-month period and the license holder has previously had a commercial crab fisherman's license suspended under this section.

(b) Except as provided by Subsection (c), a license suspension under this section does not affect the license holder's eligibility to renew the license after the suspension expires.

(c) The Executive Director, after notice and the opportunity for a hearing, may permanently revoke a commercial crab fisherman's license if:

(1) the license holder has previously had a commercial crab fisherman's license suspended twice under this section;

(2) the license holder or any other operator of the licensed vessel is convicted of one or more flagrant offenses totaling two flagrant offenses for the license holder or any other operator of the; and

(3) the date of each offense is in a 12-consecutive-month period beginning not earlier than the date of the beginning of the most recent suspension under this section.

(d) For purposes of this section, a flagrant offense includes:

(1) removing crab traps from the water or removing crabs from crab traps 30 minutes before or 30 minutes after legal crabbing hours prescribed by a proclamation of the Commission;

(2) fishing crab traps in a restricted area as set forth in §65.78 of this title;

(3) fishing crab traps in excess of legal trap numbers prescribed by a proclamation of the Commission;

(4) fishing for crabs in coastal waters without obtaining the appropriate license, if required, as prescribed in this section; or

(5) theft of crabs or crab traps.

§ 58.210 License Buyback Program

(a) Delegation of Authority. The Commission delegates power and authority to the executive director to administer the Crab License Buyback Program.

(b) Twenty percent of commercial crab fisherman's license and commercial crab fisherman's license transfer fees shall be set aside to be used only for the purpose of buying back commercial crab fisherman's licenses from a willing license holder.

(c) License Buyback Application Period.

(1) The Department will open license buyback bid offer application periods (hereafter referred to as application) if available funds permit.

(2) The Department shall establish during each application period a deadline for receipt of all applications.

(d) License Buyback Application Requirements.

(1) The Department shall consider all applications to the Crab License Buyback Program provided the applicants meet the following requirements:

(A) A completed License Buyback Application form furnished by the Department has been submitted to the Department by the application deadline;

(B) The applicant is the owner of the license submitted for buyback; and

(C) The applicant has submitted to the Department copies of all supplemental information as required in this subsection.

(2) A completed License Buyback Application shall contain:

(A) full name of the applicant;

(B) current address of applicant's residence;

(C) social security number of applicant;

(D) a copy of legal documentation that:

(i) documents applicant holds the sole rights and privileges to the license; or

(ii) documents that all members of a partnership or corporation are in agreement to apply to the license buyback program.

(E) a copy of current commercial crab fisherman's license; and

(F) if required, the applicant's bid offer, in U.S. dollars.

(3) Department records will be used to verify all information supplied by or pertaining to the applicant's history in the crab fishery or will be used in cases where the applicant has not provided adequate information for proper consideration of the application.

(e) Crab License Buyback Criteria.

(1) The Department may establish each license year criteria which will be used to determine each application qualifications for license buyback.

(2) The Department may consider:

(A) duration of participation in fishery prior to enactment of Parks and Wildlife Code, § § 78.101-78.114;

(B) amount of funds accumulated in the Crab License Buyback Account;

(C) number of commercial crab fisherman's licenses in the fishery issued in the license year of the specific bid offer application period;

(D) bid offers from previous application periods;

(E) established open market prices for licenses; and

(F) other relevant factors.

(f) Application Ranking Procedures.

(1) Ranking values will be assigned to all applications based on the above criteria.

(2) The Department will purchase licenses beginning with the highest ranking to the lowest.

(3) Equally ranked bid offers:

If bid offers are equally ranked, the Department will rank according to the ascending alphabetical order of the applicant's last name.

(g) Notification of Acceptance or Rejection of Application.

(1) Department will notify each applicant in writing within 45 days of receipt of application regarding acceptance or rejection of application bid offer.

(2) Applicants whose bids are accepted must then notify the Department of their intent to accept or reject the offer from the Department within 15 days of the postmark of the notification letter sent by the Department.

(3) The unsuccessful applicant may withdraw, resubmit, or amend an application for consideration during any future application periods.

(4) The Department will continue to purchase in rank order as the buyback fund permits.

(h) Delegation of purchasing authority.

The Department may designate other qualified agents to purchase licenses on behalf of the Department provided all purchased licenses are surrendered to the Department and retired.


Committee Agenda Item No. 6
Exhibit B

Finance Proclamation

31TAC Chapter 53. Finance

§53.6. Commercial Fishing Licenses and Tags.

(a) Shrimping licenses.

(1) Licenses. The following license fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1995, and thereafter:

(A) resident commercial gulf shrimp boat (type 330)—$275;

(B) resident commercial bay shrimp boat (type 336)—$195;

(C) resident commercial bait-shrimp boat (type 337)—$195;

(D) resident commercial shrimp boat captain's (type 333)—$25;

(E) nonresident commercial gulf shrimp boat (type 430)—$1,025;

(F) nonresident commercial bay shrimp boat (type 436)—$525;

(G) nonresident commercial bait-shrimp boat (type 437)—$525; and

(H) nonresident commercial shrimp boat captain's (type 433)—$100.

(2) License transfers:

(A) resident commercial gulf shrimp boat license transfer (type 383)—$5.00;

(B) resident commercial bay shrimp boat license transfer (type 366)—$195;

(C) resident commercial bait-shrimp boat license transfer (type 367)—$195;

(D) nonresident commercial gulf shrimp boat license transfer (type 483)—$5.00;

(E) nonresident commercial bay shrimp boat license transfer (type 466)—$195; and

(F) nonresident commercial bait-shrimp boat license transfer (type 467)—$195.

(3) Duplicate License plates:

(A) resident commercial gulf shrimp boat (type 390)—$5.00;

(B) resident commercial bay shrimp boat (type 396)—$5.00;

(C) resident commercial bait-shrimp boat (type 397)—$5.00;

(D) nonresident commercial gulf shrimp boat (type 490)—$5.00;

(E) nonresident commercial bay shrimp boat (type 496)—$5.00; and

(F) nonresident commercial bait-shrimp boat (type 497)—$5.00.

(b) Oystering licenses.

(1) Licenses. The following license fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1995, and thereafter:

(A) resident commercial oyster boat (type 306)—$350;

(B) resident sport oyster boat (type 328)—$10;

(C) resident commercial oyster captain's (type 309)—$25;

(D) resident commercial oyster fisherman's (type 370)—$100;

(E) nonresident commercial oyster boat (type 406)—$1,400;

(F) nonresident sport oyster boat (type 428)—$40;

(G) nonresident commercial oyster boat captain's (type 409)—$100; and

(H) nonresident commercial oyster fisherman's (type 470)—$250.

(2) License transfers. The following license transfer fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1995, and thereafter:

(A) resident commercial oyster boat transfer (type 386)—$5.00; and

(B) nonresident commercial oyster boat transfer (type 486)—$5.00.

(3) Duplicate license plates. The following duplicate license plate fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1995, and thereafter:

(A) resident commercial oyster boat (type 395)—$5.00; and

(B) nonresident commercial oyster boat (type 495)—$5.00.

(c) General, finfish, menhaden, mussel, clam, and miscellaneous licenses and permits.

(1) Licenses and permits. The following license fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1995, and thereafter:

(A) resident commercial fishing boat (type 304)—$15;

(B) commercial fishing boat (menhaden only) (type 325)—$3,500;

(C) resident general commercial fisherman's (type 372)—$20;

(D) resident commercial finfish fisherman's (type 371)—$75;

(E) resident commercial mussel and clam fisherman's (type 320)—$30;

(F) resident shell buyer's (type 324)—$100;

(G) nonresident commercial fishing boat (type 404)—$60;

(H) nonresident general commercial fisherman's (type 340)—$150;

(I) nonresident commercial finfish fisherman's (type 361)—$150;

(J) nonresident commercial mussel and clam fisherman's (type 420)—$800;

(K) nonresident shell buyer's (type 424)—$1,500;

(L) menhaden fish plant permit (type 326)—$150; and

(M) mussel dredge fee (type 323)—$30.

(2) License transfers. The following license transfer fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1995, and thereafter:

(A) resident commercial fishing boat license transfer (type 384)—$5.00; and

(B) nonresident commercial fishing boat license transfer (type 484)—$5.00.

(3) Duplicate license plates. The following duplicate license plate fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1995, and thereafter:

(A) resident commercial fishing boat (type 394)—$5.00; and

(B) nonresident commercial fishing boat (494)—$5.00.

(d) Crabbing licenses.

(1) Licenses and permits. The following license fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1998, and thereafter:

(A) resident commercial crab fisherman's (type xxx)—$500; and

(B) nonresident commercial crab fisherman's (type xxx)—$2,000.

(2) License transfers. The following license transfer fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1998, and thereafter:

(A) resident commercial crab fisherman's (type xxx)—$500; and

(B) nonresident commercial crab fisherman's (type xxx)—$2,000.

(3) Duplicate license plates. The following duplicate license plate fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1998, and thereafter:

(A) resident commercial crab fisherman's(type xxx)—$5; and

(B) nonresident commercial crab fisherman's(type xxx)—$5.

§53.7. Business Licenses and Permits.

Fish, bait, and shrimp licenses and tags.

(1) Licenses. The following license fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1995, and thereafter:

(A) retail fish dealer's (type 302)—$46;

(B) retail fish dealer's truck (type 316)—$86;

(C) wholesale fish dealer's (type 314)—$525;

(D) wholesale fish dealer's truck (type 315)—$325;

(E) bait dealer's (type 312)—$30;

(F) shrimp house operator's (type 332)—$425;

(G) bait shrimp dealer's (type 335)—$115;

(H) finfish import (type 380)—$75; and

(I) fishing guide (type 310)—$75.

(2) License transfers. The following license fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1995, and thereafter:

(A) retail fish dealer's license transfer (type 382)—$5.00;

(B) retail fish dealer's truck license transfer (type 388)—$5.00;

(C) wholesale fish dealer's license transfer (type 382)—$5.00;

(D) wholesale fish dealer's truck license transfer (type 388)—$5.00;

(E) bait dealer's license transfer (type 387)—$5.00;

(F) shrimp house operator's license transfer (type 389)—$5.00;

(G) bait shrimp dealer's license transfer (type 385)—$5.00;

(H) finfish import license transfer (type 381)—$5.00.

(3) Tags. The following tag fee amounts are effective for the license year beginning September 1, 1995, and thereafter:

(A) saltwater trotline tag (type 307)—$3.00; and

[(B) commercial crab trap tag (type 305)—$1.50.]


Committee Agenda Item No. 6
Exhibit C

Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamation

31 TAC Chapter 65. Subchapter A. Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamation.

§65.78. Crabs and Ghost Shrimp.

(a) Bag, possession and size limits.

(1) It is unlawful while fishing on public waters to have in possession crabs or ghost shrimp in excess of the daily bag limit as established for those waters.

(2) There are no bag, possession, or size limits on crabs or ghost shrimp except as provided in these rules.

(3) It is unlawful to:

(A) possess egg-bearing (sponge) crabs or stone crabs;

(B) possess blue crabs less than five inches in width, (measured across the widest point of the body from tip of spine to tip of spine) except that not more than 5%, by number, of undersized crabs may be possessed for bait purposes only, if placed in a separate container at the time of taking;

(C) Remove or possess the left claw from a stone crab (each retained claw must be at least 2-1/2 inches long as measured from the tip of the immovable claw to the first joint behind the claw);

(D) fail to return immediately a stone crab to the waters where caught; or

(E) buy or sell a female crab that has its abdominal apron detached.

(F) possess more than 20 ghost shrimp (Callichiris islagrande, formerly Callianassa islagrande) per person.

(b) Seasons. There are no closed seasons for the taking of crabs, except as listed within this section.

(c) Places. There are no places closed for the taking of crabs, except as listed within this section.

(d) Devices, means and methods.

(1) It is unlawful to take, attempt to take, or possess crabs caught by devices, means, or methods other than as authorized in this subchapter.

(2) Only the following means and methods may be used for taking crabs:

(A) Crab line. It is unlawful to fish a crab line for commercial purposes that is not marked with a floating white buoy not less than six inches in height, six inches in length and six inches in width bearing the commercial crab fisherman's license plate number in letters of a contrasting color at least two inches high attached to the end fixtures.

(B) Crab trap. It is unlawful to:

(i) fish for commercial purposes with more than 200 crab traps at one time;

(ii) fish for non-commercial purposes with more than 6 crab traps at one time;

(iii) fish a crab trap in the fresh waters of this state;

(iv) fish a crab trap that:

(I) exceeds 18 cubic feet in volume;

(II) is not equipped with at least two escape vents (minimum 2-3/8 inches inside diameter) in each crab-retaining chamber, and located on the outside trap walls of each chamber; and

(III) is not equipped with a degradable panel. A trap shall be considered to have a degradable panel if one of the following methods is used in construction of the trap:

(-a-) the trap lid tie-down strap is secured to the trap [at one end] by a [simple] loop of untreated jute twine (comparable to Lehigh brand # 530) or sisal twine (comparable to Lehigh brand # 390). The trap lid must be secured so that when the twine degrades, the lid will no longer be securely closed; or

(-b-) the trap lid tie-down strap is secured to the trap by a loop of bare untreated steel wire with a diameter of no larger than 20 gauge. The trap lid must be secured so that when the wire degrades, the lid will no longer be securely closed; or

(-c-)[(-b-)]the trap contains at least one sidewall, not including the bottom panel, with a rectangular opening no smaller [in either dimension] than 3 inches by 6 inches. Any obstruction placed in this opening may not be secured in any manner except:

(-1-) it may be laced, sewn, or otherwise obstructed by a single length of untreated jute twine (comparable to Lehigh # 530) or sisal twine (comparable to Lehigh # 390) knotted only at each end and not tied or looped more than once around a single mesh bar. When the twine degrades, the opening in the sidewall of the trap will no longer be obstructed; or

(-2-) it may be laced, sewn, or otherwise obstructed by a single length of bare untreated steel wire with a diameter of no larger than 20 gauge. When the wire degrades, the opening in the sidewall of the trap will no longer be obstructed; or

(-3-) the obstruction may be loosely hinged at the bottom of the opening by no more than two bare untreated steel hog rings and secured at the top of the obstruction in no more than one place by a single length of untreated jute twine (comparable to Lehigh brand # 530), sisal twine (comparable to Lehigh brand # 390), or by a single length of bare untreated steel wire with a diameter of no larger than 20 gauge. When the twine or wire degrades, the obstruction will hinge downward and the opening in the sidewall of the trap will no longer be obstructed.

(v) fish a crab trap for commercial purposes that is not marked with a floating white buoy not less than six inches in height, six inches in length, and six inches in width attached to the crab trap;

(vi) fish a crab trap for commercial purposes that is not marked with a floating white buoy bearing the commercial crab fisherman's license plate number in letters of a contrasting color at least two inches high attached to the crab trap;

(vii) fish a crab trap that is marked with a buoy bearing a commercial crab fisherman's license plate number other than the commercial crab fisherman's license plate number displayed on the crab fishing boat;

(viii)[(vi)] fish a crab trap for non-commercial purposes without a floating white buoy not less than six inches in height, six inches in length, and six inches in width, bearing a two-inch wide center stripe of contrasting color, attached to the crab trap;

(ix)[(vii)] fish a crab trap in public salt waters without a valid gear tag. Gear tags are valid for 30 days after date set out.

(x)[(viii)] fish a crab trap within 200 feet of a marked navigable channel in Aransas County; and in the water area of Aransas Bay within one-half mile of a line from Hail Point on the Lamar Peninsula, then direct to the eastern end of Goose Island, then along the southern shore of Goose Island, then along the eastern shoreline of the Live Oak Peninsula past the town of Fulton, past Nine Mile Point, past the town of Rockport to a point at the east end of Talley Island including that part of Copano Bay within 1,000 feet of the causeway between Lamar Peninsula and Live Oak Peninsula or possess, use or place more than three crab traps in waters north and west of Highway 146 where it crosses the Houston Ship Channel in Harris County;

(xi)[(ix)] remove crab traps from the water or remove crabs from crab traps during the period from 30 minutes after sunset to 30 minutes before sunrise;

(xii)[(x)]place a crab trap or portion thereof closer than 100 feet from any other crab trap, except when traps are secured to a pier or dock;

(xiii)[(xi)] fish a crab trap in public waters that is marked with a buoy made of a plastic bottle(s) of any color or size; or

(xiv)[(xii)] use or place more than three crab traps in public waters of the San Bernard River north of a line marked by the boat access channel at Bernard Acres.

(C) Sand pump. It is unlawful for any person to use a sand pump:

(i) that is not manually operated; or

(ii) for commercial purposes.

(D) Other devices. Devices legally used for taking fresh or salt water fish or shrimp may be used to take crab if operated in places and at times authorized by a proclamation of the Parks and Wildlife Commission or the Parks and Wildlife Code.


Committee Agenda Item No. 7
Presenter: Paul Hammerschmidt

Regulations Committee
Action
Proposed Proposed 1998-99 Shrimp Fishery Proclamation
January 1998

I. Discussion: Responsibility for establishing seasons, bag limits, means and methods for taking wildlife resources is delegated to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61, Uniform Wildlife Regulatory Act (Wildlife Conservation Act of 1983).

Proposed changes extend the sunset of the live bait fish exemption for commercial bait shrimp fishermen until September 1, 2001 and adds a temporary exemption for retaining Atlantic cutlassfish.

Department outreach efforts with Texas bait dealers indicate the exemption adopted in 1997 is working well to provide adequate numbers of live bait fish for recreational anglers without creating undo resource problems or abuse. Replacement of this exemption with a permit system for the commercial take of live bait fish would be administratively cumbersome, would not allow for adequate license controls, and thus may not be warranted at this time. Extending the exemption would allow for further evaluation of alterative management measures in this fishery. The addition of an exemption for the retention of Atlantic cutlassfish for bait should provide a better opportunity to serve the Texas offshore anglers.

II. Recommendation: The staff recommends the Regulations Commission adopt the following motion:

"The Regulations Committee of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission authorizes staff to publish the proposed regulation changes in the Texas Register for the required 30-day public comment period and hold public hearings."

Attachment - 1

1. Exhibit A - Statewide Shrimp Fishery Proclamation


Committee Agenda Item No. 7
Exhibit A

Statewide Shrimp Fishery Proclamation

31 TAC. Chapter 58. Subchapter B. Statewide Shrimp Fishery Proclamation

§58.160. Taking or Attempting to Take Shrimp (Shrimping) — General Rules.

(a-d) No Change

(e) Other aquatic life taken incidental to legal shrimping operations.

(1) Licensed Commercial Shrimp Boats.

(A) Other aquatic life taken incidental to legal shrimping operations may not be retained except as provided in these rules. The term "legal shrimping operations" is defined as the use of a legal trawl in places, at times, and in manners as authorized by the department.

(B) A person taking shrimp with a trawl on a licensed commercial shrimp boat may not retain a catch of finfish or other aquatic life, in any combination, exceeding 50% by weight of the total trawl catch of shrimp by weight on board the vessel.

(i) Within the provision provided in Subparagraph (B), species regulated by bag and size limits under provisions of proclamation of the Parks and Wildlife Commission may not be retained in numbers in excess of the daily bag limit established for those species.

(ii) From June 1 through September 30 of each year, in addition to the provision of Subparagraph (B)[, up to 1500 live non-game fish, not regulated by bag or size limits, may be retained on board a licensed commercial bait-shrimp boat for bait purposes only. The provisions of this clause will expire September 1, 1998.]:

(I) up to 1,500 live non-game fish, not regulated by bag or size limits, may be retained on board a licensed commercial bait-shrimp boat for bait purposes only; and

(II) up to 3,600 (300 dozen) Atlantic cutlassfish (Trichiurus lepturus) (also known as ribbonfish) may be retained on board a licensed commercial bait-shrimp boat for bait purposes only.

(III) The provisions of this clause will expire September 1, 2001.

(2) Non-commercial shrimping. A person using an individual bait shrimp trawl for non-commercial purposes may retain for bait purposes only up to 200 non-game fish, not regulated by bag or size limits.


Committee Agenda Item No. 8
Presenter: Steve Hall

Regulations Committee
Action
Health Certification of Native Shellfish
January 1998

(This is Public Hearing Agenda Item No. 9.)


Committee Agenda Item No. 9
Presenters: Robert L. Cook, Phil Durocher, Paul Hammerschmidt

Regulations Committee
Action
1998-1999 Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamation
January 1998

I. Discussion: Responsibility for establishing seasons, bag limits, and means and methods for taking wildlife resources is delegated to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61. Proposed changes to the Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamation are a result of legislative action by the 75th Texas Legislature, proposals advanced by staff, and suggestions from the public. Changes advanced by staff are based upon scientific investigation and are required findings of fact. The proposed changes implement statutory mandates, increase recreational opportunity, simplify regulatory activity, promote enforcement, and provide for the sound biological management of the wildlife resources of the state.

II. Recommendation: The staff recommends the Regulations Committee adopt the following motion:

"The Regulations Committee of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission authorizes staff to publish the proposed 1998-1999 Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamation, contained at Exhibit A, in the Texas Register for public comment."

Attachment - 1

1. Exhibit A - Proposed 1998-1999 Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamation


Committee Agenda Item No. 9
Exhibit A

Proposed Preamble

1. Introduction.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department proposes the repeal of §§65.33, 65.50, and 65.52, and amendments to §§65.3, 65.9-65.11, 65.24, 65.28, 65.31, 65.42, 65.46, 65.54, 65.71, 65.72, and 65.58; and new §65.30, concerning the Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamation.

The amendment to §65.3, concerning Definitions, removes the crossbow from the definition of lawful archery equipment. The amendment to §65.9, concerning Open Seasons: General Rules, rewords subsections (a)-(c) for clarification, eliminates subsection (d), which conflicts with provisions of the Parks and Wildlife Code, and eliminates provisions made redundant by the passage of House Bill 2542, Acts of the 75th Texas Legislature. The amendment to §65.10, concerning Possession of Wildlife Resources, alters subsection (a) to make reference 'permanent residence' rather than 'final destination,' which is no longer defined. The amendment to §65.11, concerning Means and Methods, adds clarifying language to specify lawful methods and deletes provisions applicable to falconry that are being moved to another subchapter. The amendment to §65.24, concerning Permits, adds desert bighorn sheep to the list of game animals to which the provisions of the section apply. The amendment to §65.26, concerning Managed Lands Deer Permits, adds provisions for including mule deer in certain aspects of the regulation. The amendment to §65.28, concerning Landowner Assisted Management Permit System (LAMPS), adds language to clarify that all tagging requirements imposed as a condition of license privilege still apply. New §65.30, concerning Desert Bighorn Sheep Permits, specifies the special requirements for persons hunting desert bighorn sheep. The amendment to §65.31, concerning Antlerless Mule Deer Permits, rewords subsection (b) to eliminate confusion. The amendment to §65.42, concerning Deer: eliminates the LAMPS program in eight counties along the upper-central Gulf coast; initiates a 16-day white-tailed deer season in two Panhandle counties; doubles the number of doe days in five deep East Texas counties and moves the doe day period from the beginning of the season to either side of Thanksgiving; and opens a mule deer season in a portion of Andrews County. The change to §65.46, concerning Squirrel, lengthens the season in 51 counties in East Texas. The amendment to §65.54, concerning Game Birds, adds a reference to provisions for hunting by means of falconry that are contained in the Raptor Proclamation. The amendment to §65.71, concerning Reservoir Boundaries, adds clarifying language to the boundary description of Lake O'the Pines and a boundary description for Lake Pat Mayse. The amendment to §65.72, concerning Fish, makes crossbows a lawful means for taking nongame fish, implements a Largemouth Bass Trophy Tag for the take of largemouth bass; eliminates the minimum length limits for largemouth bass on Lakes Ray Roberts and Madisonville and replaces them with slot limits; modifies slot limits for largemouth bass on Lakes Fork and Monticello; corrects an inaccurate reference to a roadway serving as a regulatory boundary below Lake Livingston; implements special bag requirements for hybrid striped bass and white bass on Lake Pat Mayse and Lake O'the Pines; implements new bag restrictions for catfish on Tankersley Reservoir; clarifies that hair or feathers may be lawfully used on flies for use in certain parts of the Guadalupe River; implements a prohibition on juglines, throwlines, and trotlines on Tankersley Reservoir; places Bell street Lake under the provisions applicable to community fishing lakes; and implements new size limits for vermilion snapper. The amendment to §65.78, concerning Crabs and Ghost Shrimp, stipulates that undersized crabs may be possessed for bait purposes only, imposes marking requirements for crab lines, and adds equipment and marking specifications for crab traps.

2. Fiscal Note.

Robert Macdonald, Wildlife Division regulations coordinator, has determined that for each of the first five years that the proposed rules are in effect, there will be no fiscal implications to state or local governments as a result of enforcing or administering the proposed rules.

3. Public Benefit - Cost Note.

Mr. Macdonald also has determined that for each of the first five years the repeals, amendments and new rule as proposed are in effect:

(A) The public benefit anticipated as a result of enforcing the rules as proposed will be the dispensation of the agency's statutory duty to protect and conserve the wildlife resources of this state, the duty to equitably distribute opportunity for the enjoyment of those resources among the citizens, and the execution of the commission's policy to maximize recreational opportunity within the precepts of sound biological management practices.

(B) There will be no effect on small businesses. There are no additional economic costs to persons required to comply with the rules as proposed, except for persons affected by proposed §65.78, concerning Crabs and Ghost Shrimp. Persons affected by that section will be required to conform with equipment specifications and marking standards that will entail minimal expense.

(C) The department has not filed a local impact statement with the Texas Workforce Commission as required by Government Code, §2001.022, as this agency has determined that the rules as proposed will not impact local economies.

(D) The department has determined that there will not be a taking of private real property, as defined by Government Code, Chapter 2007, as a result of the proposed rules.

4. Request for Public Comment.

Comments on the proposed rules may be submitted to Robert Macdonald (Wildlife (512) 389-4775), Ken Kurzawski (Inland Fisheries 389-4591), Paul Hammerschmidt (Coastal Fisheries 389-4650), David Sinclair (Wildlife Enforcement 389-4854), or Dennis Johnston (Aquatic Enforcement 389-4628), Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, 4200 Smith School Road, Austin, Texas 78744; (512) 389-4775 or 1-800-792-1112.

5. Statutory Authority.

The repeals, amendment, and new section are proposed under the authority of Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61, Uniform Wildlife Regulatory Act (Wildlife Conservation Act of 1983), and Chapter 67, which provide the Commission with authority to establish wildlife resource regulations for this state.

The repeal affects Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61.

§65.33. Elk Permits.

This agency hereby certifies that the proposal has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be within the agency's authority to adopt.

Issued in Austin, Texas on

William D. Harvey, Ph.D.
Regulatory Coordinator
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
1-800-792-1112, extension 4642 or 512-389-4642

The amendments and new section are proposed under the authority of Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61, Uniform Wildlife Regulatory Act (Wildlife Conservation Act of 1983), and Chapter 67, which provide the Commission with authority to establish wildlife resource regulations for this state.

The amendments and new section affect Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapters 49 and 61.

General Provisions

§65.3. Definitions. The following words and terms, when used in this chapter, shall have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise. All other words and terms in this chapter shall have the meanings assigned in the Texas Parks and Wildlife Code.

Lawful archery equipment - longbow, recurved bow, and compound bow[, and crossbow].

§65.9. Open Seasons: General Rules.

(a) There is no open season on game animals or game birds on public roads and highways, the right-of-way of public roads and highways; or in any state-owned riverbed in Dimmit, Uvalde, and Zavala counties.

(b) [Seasons for game animals and game birds are closed during the hours between 1/2-hour after sunset and 1/2-hour before sunrise.]

[(c)] No antlerless deer permit is required to take [possess] an antlerless deer [taken] during the archery-only open season, except on lands for which Managed Lands Deer permits have been issued.

[(d) Every game bird or game animal wounded by hunting and reduced to possession by the hunter must be killed immediately and become a part of the daily or annual bag limit.]

(c)[(e)] The hunting of roosting turkey is unlawful.

65.10. Possession of Wildlife Resources.

(a) For all wildlife resources taken for personal consumption and for which there is a possession limit (except migratory birds), the possession limit shall not apply after the wildlife resource has reached the possessor’s permanent residence and is finally processed [its final destination].

(b) Proof of sex must remain with certain wildlife resources until the wildlife resource reaches its final destination and is finally [fully] processed.

(1) The wildlife resources listed in this subsection may not be lawfully possessed without proof of sex, as follows:

(A) turkey taken in other than an either-sex county: the beard must remain attached to the bird.

(B) deer:

(i) buck: the unskinned head, with antlers still attached;

(ii) antlerless: the unskinned head;

(C) antelope: the unskinned head; and

(D) pheasant: one foot or the entire plumage attached to the carcass.

(2) In lieu of proof of sex, the person who killed the wildlife resource may obtain a receipt from a taxidermist or a signed statement from the landowner, containing the following information:

(A) the name of person who killed the wildlife resource;

(B) the date the wildlife resource was killed;

(C) one of the following, as applicable:

(i) whether the deer was antlered or antlerless;

(ii) the sex of the antelope;

(iii) the sex of the turkey and whether a beard was attached; or (iv) the sex of the pheasant.

(c) A person may give, leave, receive, or possess any species of legally taken wildlife resource, or a part of the resource, that is required to have a tag or permit attached or is protected by a bag or possession limit, if the wildlife resource is accompanied by a wildlife resource document from the person who killed or caught the wildlife resource. For deer, turkey, or antelope, a properly executed [The] wildlife resource document shall accompany the wildlife resource until it reaches its final destination. For all other wildlife resources, a properly executed wildlife resource document shall accompany the wildlife resource until it reaches the possessor's permanent residence . The document must contain the following information:

(1) the name, signature, address, and hunting or fishing license number, as required, of the person who killed or caught the wildlife resource;

(2) the name of the person receiving the wildlife resource;

(3) a description of the wildlife resource (number and type of species or parts);

(4) the date the wildlife resource was killed or caught; and

(5) the location where the wildlife resource was killed or caught (name of ranch; area; lake, bay or stream; and county). It is a defense to prosecution if the person receiving the wildlife resource does not exceed any possession limit or possess a wildlife resource or a part of a wildlife resource that is required to be tagged if the wildlife resource or part of the wildlife resource is tagged.

§65.11. Lawful Means [and Methods]. It is unlawful to hunt [or fish for] any of the wildlife resources of this state except by the means [and methods] authorized by this section and as provided in §65.19 of this title (relating to Hunting Deer with Dogs) [chapter].

(1) Firearms.

(A) It is lawful to hunt game animals and game birds with any legal firearm, including muzzleloading weapons, except as specifically restricted in this section [chapter].

(B) Special muzzleloader-only antlerless deer seasons are restricted to muzzleloading firearms only.

(C) It is unlawful to use rimfire ammunition to hunt deer, antelope, or desert bighorn sheep[, and elk or aoudad sheep (in counties where elk or aoudad sheep are game animals)].

(D) It is unlawful to hunt game animals or game birds with a fully automatic firearm or any firearm equipped with a silencer or sound-suppressing device.

(2) Archery.

(A) A person may hunt by means of longbow, compound bow, or recurved bow during any open season except a special muzzleloader-only antlerless deer season or spring Eastern turkey season.

(B) Arrows that are treated with poisons or drugs, or that contain explosives are not lawful devices for hunting any species of wildlife resource in this state.

(C) While hunting turkey and all game animals other than squirrels by means of longbow, compound bow, or recurved bow:

(i) the bow must have a minimum peak draw weight of 40 pounds at the time of hunting; and

(ii) the arrow must be equipped with a broadhead hunting point at least 7/8-inch in width upon impact, with a minimum of two cutting edges. A mechanical broadhead must begin to open upon impact and when open must be a minimum of 7/8-inch in width.

(D) It is unlawful to hunt deer or turkey with a broadhead hunting point while in possession of a firearm during an archery-only season.

(E) Special archery-only seasons are restricted to lawful archery equipment only, except as provided in paragraph (3) of this section.

(3) Crossbow. Crossbows are lawful during any general open season except Eastern turkey seasons. A person having an upper-limb handicap may use a crossbow to hunt deer and turkey during an archery-only season, provided the person has in their immediate possession a physician's statement certifying the extent of the disability. When hunting turkey and all game animals other than squirrels by means of crossbow:

(A) the crossbow must have a minimum of 125 pounds of pull;

(B) the crossbow must have a mechanical safety;

(C) the crossbow stock must be not less than 25 inches in length; and

(D) the bolt must conform with paragraphs (2)(B) and (2)(C)(ii) of this section.

(4) Falconry.

[(A)] It is lawful to hunt any game bird or game animal by means of falconry under the provisions of Subchapter K of this chapter (relating to Raptor Proclamation) [, but the hunting is limited to persons holding valid permits issued by the department].

[(B) It is lawful to hunt game birds other than migratory game birds during the period from September 1 to March 1 of each year. Other wildlife resources may be hunted only during the regular open seasons as provided in this chapter.]

[(C) The daily bag limit for game birds (except migratory game birds) is one, either sex, per raptor, and the possession limit is two, either sex, per raptor. The daily bag and possession limits for other wildlife resources are as provided under the regular seasons, bag, and possession limits for those resources.]

(5) Special Provision. Except as provided in this paragraph, no motorized conveyance of any type shall be used to locate, herd, harass, or hunt desert bighorn sheep. Any person who qualifies for handicapped parking privileges under Transportation Code, Chapter 681 may possess a loaded firearm in or on a motor vehicle while hunting desert bighorn sheep and may hunt desert bighorn sheep from a motor vehicle, provided the motor vehicle is not in motion and the engine is not running.

§65.24. Permits.

(a) Permits shall be issued only to the landowner.

(b) No person may hunt white-tailed deer, mule deer,desert bighorn sheep, or antelope[or elk] when permits are required unless that person has received from the landowner and has in possession a valid permit issued by the department.

(c) When permits are required to hunt or possess the wildlife resources listed in subsection (b) of this section, it is unlawful to:

(1) use a permit more than once;

(2) use a permit on a tract of land other than the tract for which the permit was issued;

(3) falsify or fail to fully complete any information required by a permit application; or

(4) possess the wildlife resource without attaching a valid, properly executed permit, which shall remain attached until the wildlife resource reaches its final destination.

(d) No state-issued permit is required to hunt antlerless white-tailed deer on a National Wildlife Refuge.

§65.26. Managed Lands Deer (MLD) Permits.

(a) MLD permits may be issued only to a landowner who has a current WMP in accordance with §65.25 of this title (relating to Wildlife Management Plan) that specifies a harvest quota of buck and/or antlerless white-tailed deer or antlerless mule deer.

(b) An applicant may request the issuance of permits for antlerless-only[, buck-only,] or both-sex harvest quotas.

(c) The number of MLD permits distributed to a hunter shall be at the discretion of the landowner.

(d) Except for deer taken under an Antlerless and Spike-Buck Control Permit, all deer harvested on a property where MLD permits have been issued must be tagged with the appropriate MLD permit as specified in the WMP.

(e) On all tracts of land for which both MLD buck permits and MLD antlerless permits have been issued for the harvest of white-tailed deer, [and] on properties for which the WMP specifies a harvest quota of zero for either sex, and on properties for which the WMP specifies a harvest quota for antlerless mule deer:

(1) a hunter may use any appropriate [white-tailed] deer tag on his or her hunting license, regardless of the bag limit in the county, provided the hunter also possesses an appropriate MLD permit for each deer taken; and

(2) the landowner may allow the hunting of antlerless white-tailed deer for 14 consecutive days beginning the day immediately following the last day of the general open season.

(f) If a landowner in possession of MLD permits does not wish to abide by the harvest quota specified by the WMP, the landowner must return all MLD permits to the department by opening day of that year's special archery season.

(g) The department reserves the right to deny further issuance of MLD permits to a landowner who exceeds the harvest quota specified by the WMP or who does not otherwise abide by the WMP.

(h) MLD permits shall not be bartered, purchased, or sold.

§65.28. Landowner Assisted Management Permit System (LAMPS).

(a) A LAMPS recommendation specifies the number of antlerless deer to be harvested from a specific tract of land and is derived from acreage, habitat, population, and harvest data supplied by the landowner as specified by the department.

(b) The minimum contiguous acreage necessary for eligibility in the LAMPS program shall be determined on a county-by-county basis according to population trends and habitat.

(c) No LAMPS antlerless deer permit is required for a deer legally killed with lawful archery equipment during the archery-only open season.

(d) All deer harvested on a tract of land for which LAMPS permits have been issued shall be tagged with the appropriate white-tailed deer tag from the hunting license of the person taking the deer.

§65.30. Desert Bighorn Sheep Permits.

(a) No person may hunt desert bighorn sheep without first attending an orientation conducted by the department during the year for which the permit is issued.

(b) Any person taking a desert bighorn sheep shall, within 72 hours of taking the sheep, ensure that the sheep is permanently tagged in one horn by a lawful representative of the department.

§65.31. Antlerless Mule Deer Permits.

(a) At the request of a landowner, the department may, based on evaluations of habitat and population, issue antlerless mule deer hunting permits for a specific tract of land.

(b) No antlerless mule deer hunting permit is required for mule deer killed during an [the] archery-only open season in a county for which the bag limit during an archery-only season is [, when bag limits are] designated as either sex.

[§65.33. Elk Permits. At the request of a landowner, the department may, based on evaluations of habitat and population, issue elk hunting permits for any specific tract of land in Brewster, Culberson, Dallam, Deaf Smith, El Paso, Hartley, Hudspeth, Jeff Davis, Moore, Oldham, Pecos, Potter, Presidio, Reeves, and Terrell counties.]

This agency hereby certifies that the proposal has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be within the agency's authority to adopt.

Issued in Austin, Texas on

William D. Harvey, Ph.D.
Regulatory Coordinator
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
1-800-792-1112, extension 4642 or 512-389-4642

The repeals and amendments are proposed under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61, Uniform Wildlife Regulatory Act (Wildlife Conservation Act of 1983), which provides the Commission with authority to establish wildlife resource regulations for this state.

The repeals affect Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61.

§65.50. Elk: Open seasons and annual bag limits.

§65.52. Aoudad Sheep: Open seasons and annual bag limits.

This agency hereby certifies that the proposal has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be within the agency's authority to adopt.

Issued in Austin, Texas on

William D. Harvey, Ph.D.
Regulatory Coordinator
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
1-800-792-1112, extension 4642 or 512-389-4642

The amendments are proposed under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61, Uniform Wildlife Regulatory Act (Wildlife Conservation Act of 1983), which provides the Commission with authority to establish wildlife resource regulations for this state.

The amendments affect Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapters 49 and 61.

Seasons and Bag Limits-Hunting Provisions

§65.42. Deer.

(a) Except as provided in §65.27 of this title (relating to Antlerless and Spike-Buck Deer Control Permits), no person may exceed the annual bag limit of five white-tailed deer (no more than three bucks) and two mule deer (no more than one buck).

(b) White-tailed deer. The open seasons and annual bag limits for white-tailed deer shall be as follows.

(1) In Bandera, Bexar, Blanco, Brewster, Brown, Burnet, Coke, Coleman, Comal (west of Interstate 35), Concho, Crockett, Culberson, Edwards, Gillespie, Glasscock, Hays (west of Interstate 35), Howard, Irion, Jeff Davis, Kendall, Kerr, Kimble, Kinney (north of U.S. Highway 90), Llano, Mason, McCulloch, Medina (north of U.S. Highway 90), Menard, Mills, Mitchell, Nolan, Pecos, Presidio, Reagan, Real, Reeves, Runnels, San Saba, Schleicher, Sterling, Sutton, Terrell, Tom Green, Travis (west of Interstate 35), Upton (that southeastern portion located both south of U.S. Highway 67 and east of State Highway 349), Uvalde (north of U.S. Highway 90), and Val Verde (north of U.S. Highway 90; and that portion located both south of U.S. 90 and west of Spur 239) counties, there is a general open season.

(A) Open season: first Saturday in November through the first Sunday in January.

(B) Bag limit: four deer, no more than two bucks.

(2) In Aransas, Atascosa, Bee, Calhoun, Cameron, Hidalgo, Live Oak, Nueces, Refugio, San Patricio, Starr, and Willacy counties, there is a general open season.

(A) Open season: second Saturday in November through the third Sunday in January.

(B) Bag limit: four deer, no more than two bucks.

(C) General Late Antlerless-Only Season. In the counties listed in this paragraph there is a general late antlerless-only season.

(i) Open season: 14 consecutive days starting the first Monday following the third Sunday in January.

(ii) Bag limit: four antlerless deer.

(3) In Brooks, Dimmit, Duval, Frio, Jim Hogg, Jim Wells, Kenedy, Kinney (south of U.S. Highway 90), Kleberg, LaSalle, Maverick, McMullen, Medina (south of U.S. Highway 90), Uvalde (south of U.S. Highway 90), Val Verde (that southeastern portion located both south of U.S. Highway 90 and east of Spur 239), Webb, Zapata, and Zavala counties, there is a general open season.

(A) Open season: Second Saturday in November through the third Sunday in January.

(B) Bag limit: five deer, no more than three bucks.

(C) General Late Antlerless-Only Season. In the counties listed in this paragraph there is a general late antlerless-only season.

(i) Open season: 14 consecutive days starting the first Monday following the third Sunday in January.

(ii) Bag limit: five antlerless deer.

(4) No person may take or attempt to take more than one buck deer per license year from the counties, in the aggregate, listed within this paragraph, except as authorized under the provisions of §65.26 of this title (relating to Managed Land Deer Permits).

(A) In Bell (west of Interstate 35), Bosque, Callahan, Comanche, Coryell, Eastland, Erath, Grayson (Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge only), Hamilton, Hood, Jack, Lampasas, McLennan, Palo Pinto, Parker, Shackelford, Somervell, Stephens, Taylor, Throckmorton, Williamson (west of Interstate 35), and Young counties, there is a general open season.

(i) Open season: first Saturday in November through the first Sunday in January.

(ii) Bag limit: three deer, no more than one buck and no more than two antlerless.

(B) In Brazoria, Fort Bend, Goliad (south of U.S. Highway 59), Harris, Jackson (south of U.S. Highway 59), Matagorda, Victoria (south of U.S. Highway 59), and Wharton (south of U.S. Highway 59) counties, there is a general open season.

(i) Open season: first Saturday in November through the first Sunday in January.

(ii) Bag limit: three deer, no more than one buck and no more than two antlerless.

(iii) During the first 23 days of the general season, antlerless deer may be taken without antlerless deer permits unless MLD [or LAMPS] permits have been issued for the tract of land. If MLD [or LAMPS] permits have been issued, they must be attached to all antlerless deer harvested on the tract of land. After the first 23 days, antlerless deer may be taken only by MLD antlerless permits [or LAMPS permits].

(C) In Armstrong, Borden, Briscoe, Carson, Childress, Collingsworth, Cottle, Crosby, Dickens, Donley, Fisher, Floyd, Foard, Garza, Gray, Hall, Hansford, Hardeman, Haskell, Hemphill, Hutchinson, Jones, Kent, King, Knox, Lipscomb, Motley, Ochiltree, Randall, Roberts, Scurry, Stonewall, Swisher, Wheeler, Wichita, and Wilbarger counties, there is a general open season.

(i) Open season: first Saturday in November through the first Sunday in January.

(ii) Bag limit: three deer, no more than one buck and no more than two antlerless.

(iii) During the first six days of the general season, antlerless deer may be taken without antlerless deer permits unless MLD permits have been issued for the tract of land. After the first six days, antlerless deer may be taken only by MLD antlerless permits.

(D) In Archer, Baylor, Clay, Cooke, Denton, Hill, Johnson, Montague, Tarrant, and Wise counties, there is a general open season.

(i) Open season: first Saturday in November through the first Sunday in January.

(ii) Bag limit: three deer, no more than one buck and no more than two antlerless.

(iii) During the first nine days of the general season, antlerless deer may be taken without antlerless deer permits unless MLD permits have been issued for the tract of land. After the first nine days, antlerless deer may be taken only by MLD antlerless permits.

(E) In Anderson, Bowie, Brazos, Burleson, Camp, Cass, Cherokee, Delta, Franklin, Freestone, Gregg, Grimes, Harrison, Henderson, Hopkins, Houston, Lamar, Leon, Limestone, Madison, Marion, Morris, Navarro, Red River, Robertson, Rusk, San Jacinto, Smith, Titus, Trinity, Upshur, Van Zandt, Walker, and Wood counties, there is a general open season.

(i) Open season: first Saturday in November through the first Sunday in January.

(ii) Bag limit: three deer, no more than one buck and no more than two antlerless.

(iii) Antlerless deer may be taken only by MLD antlerless permits or LAMPS permits.

(iv) Special Requirement: In that portion of Henderson County bounded on the north by the county line, on the east by U.S. Highway 175 and Tin Can Alley Road, on the south by State Highway 31, and on the west by State Highway 274, hunting of deer is restricted to shotguns with buckshot, longbow, compound bow, recurved bow, or crossbow. Other game animals or game birds may be taken only with shotgun, longbow, compound bow, recurved bow, or crossbow.

(F) In Dallam, Hartley, Moore, Oldham, [and] Potter, and Sherman counties, there is a general open season.

(i) Open season: Saturday before Thanksgiving for 16 consecutive days.

(ii) Bag limit: three deer, no more than one buck and no more than two antlerless.

(iii) Antlerless deer may be taken only by MLD antlerless permits.

(G) In Nacogdoches, Panola, Sabine, San Augustine and Shelby counties, there is a general open season.

(i) Open season: first Saturday in November through the first Sunday in January.

(ii) Bag limit: three deer, no more than one buck and no more than two antlerless.

(iii) From Thanksgiving Day through the Sunday immediately following Thanksgiving Day, [During the first two days of the general season,] antlerless deer may be taken without antlerless deer permits unless MLD or LAMPS permits have been issued for the tract of land. If MLD or LAMPS permits have been issued, they must be attached to all antlerless deer harvested on the tract of land. From the first Saturday in November through Thanksgiving Day, and from the Sunday immediately following Thanksgiving Day through the first Sunday in January, [After the first two days,] antlerless deer may be taken only by MLD antlerless deer permits or LAMPS permits. On National Forest, Corps of Engineers, Sabine River Authority and Trinity River Authority lands, antlerless deer may be taken only by MLD antlerless permits.

(H) In Austin, Bastrop, Bell (east of Interstate 35), Caldwell, Colorado, Comal (east of Interstate 35), Crane, De Witt, Ector, Ellis, Falls, Fannin, Fayette, Goliad (north of U.S. Highway 59), Gonzales, Guadalupe, Hays (east of Interstate 35), Hunt, Jackson (north of U.S. Highway 59), Karnes, Kaufman, Lavaca, Lee, Loving, Midland, Milam, Rains, Travis (east of Interstate 35), Upton (that portion located north of U.S. Highway 67; and that area located both south of U.S. Highway 67 and west of state highway 349), Victoria (north of U.S. Highway 59), Waller, Ward, Washington, Wharton (north of U.S. Highway 59), Williamson (east of Interstate 35), and Wilson counties, there is a general open season.

(i) Open season: first Saturday in November through the first Sunday in January.

(ii) Bag limit: three deer, no more than one buck and no more than two antlerless.

(iii) Antlerless deer may be taken only by MLD antlerless permits.

(5) In Angelina, Chambers, Hardin, Jasper, Jefferson, Liberty, Montgomery, Newton, Orange, Polk, and Tyler counties, there is a general open season.

(A) Open season: first Saturday in November through the first Sunday in January.

(B) Bag limit: four [three] deer, no more than two bucks and no more than two antlerless.

(C) During the first 23 days of the general season, antlerless deer may be taken without antlerless deer permits unless MLD or LAMPS permits have been issued for the tract of land. If MLD or LAMPS permits have been issued, they must be attached to all antlerless deer harvested on the tract of land. After the first 23 days, antlerless deer may be taken only by MLD antlerless permits or LAMPS permits. On National Forest, Corps of Engineers, Sabine River Authority and Trinity River Authority lands, antlerless deer may be taken only by MLD antlerless permits.

(6) In Andrews, Bailey, Castro, Cochran, Collin, [Dallam,] Dallas, Dawson, Deaf Smith, El Paso, Gaines, Galveston, Grayson (except on the Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge), Hale, Hockley, Hudspeth, Lamb, Lubbock, Lynn, Martin, Parmer, Rockwall, [Sherman,]Terry, Winkler, and Yoakum counties, there is no general open season.

(7) Archery-only open seasons. In all counties where there is a general open season for white-tailed deer, and in Grayson County, there is an archery-only open season during which either sex of white-tailed deer may be taken as provided for in §65.11(2) and (3) of this title (relating to Means and Methods).

(A) Open season: the Saturday closest to September 30 for 30 consecutive days.

(B) Bag limit: Except for Grayson County, the bag limit in any given county is as provided for that county during the general open season. In Grayson County, the bag limit is three deer, no more than one buck and no more than two antlerless.

(8) Muzzleloader-only open seasons, and bag and possession limits shall be as follows.

(A) In Bandera, Bexar, Blanco, Brewster, Brown, Burnet, Coke, Coleman, Comal (west of Interstate 35), Concho, Crockett, Culberson, Edwards, Gillespie, Glasscock, Hays (west of Interstate 35), Howard, Irion, Jeff Davis, Kendall, Kerr, Kimble, Kinney (north of U.S. Highway 90), Llano, Mason, Medina (north of U.S. Highway 90), Menard, McCulloch, Mills, Mitchell, Nolan, Pecos, Presidio, Reagan, Real, Reeves, Runnels, San Saba, Schleicher, Sterling, Sutton, Terrell, Tom Green, Travis (west of Interstate 35), Upton (that portion located both south of U.S. Highway 67 and east of state highway 349), Uvalde (north of U.S. Highway 90), and Val Verde (north of U.S. Highway 90; and that portion located both south of U.S. Highway 90 and west of Spur 239) counties, there is an open season during which only antlerless deer may be taken only with a muzzleloader.

(B) Open Season: from the first Saturday following the closing of the general open season for nine consecutive days.

(C) Bag limit: four antlerless deer.

(9) Special Youth-Only Season.

(A) There shall be a special youth-only general hunting season in all counties where there is a general open season.

(i) open season: the Saturday and Sunday immediately preceding the first Saturday in November.

(ii) bag limits, provisions for the take of antlerless deer, and special requirements: as specified for individual counties in paragraphs (1)-(6) of this subsection.

(B) Only licensed hunters 16 years of age or younger may hunt during the season established by this subsection.

(c) Mule deer. The open seasons and annual bag limits for mule deer shall be as follows.

(1) In Armstrong, Borden, Briscoe, Carson, Childress, Coke, Collingsworth, Cottle, Crosby, Dallam, Deaf Smith, Dickens, Donley, Fisher, Floyd, Foard, Garza, Gray, Hall, Hardeman, Hartley, Hemphill, Hutchinson, Kent, King, Lipscomb, Moore, Motley, Ochiltree, Oldham, Potter, Randall, Roberts, Scurry, Stonewall, and Swisher counties, there is a general open season.

(A) Open season: Saturday before Thanksgiving for 16 consecutive days.

(B) Bag limit: two deer, no more than one buck.

(C) Antlerless deer may be taken only by Antlerless Mule Deer or MLD Permits.

(2) In Brewster, Crane, Crockett, Culberson, Ector, El Paso, Hudspeth, Jeff Davis, Loving, Midland, Pecos, Presidio, Reagan, Reeves, Terrell, Upton, Val Verde, Ward, and Winkler counties, there is a general open season.

(A) Open season: last Saturday in November for 16 consecutive days.

(B) Bag limit: two deer, no more than one buck.

(C) Antlerless deer may be taken only by Antlerless Mule Deer or MLD Permits.

(3) In Andrews (west of U.S. Highway 385), Bailey, Hockley, Lamb, Terry, and Yoakum counties, there is a general open season.

(A) Open season: Saturday before Thanksgiving for five consecutive days.

(B) Bag limit: two deer, no more than one buck.

(C) Antlerless deer may be taken only by Antlerless Mule Deer or MLD Permits.

(4) In all other counties, there is no general open season for mule deer.

(5) Archery-only open seasons and bag and possession limits shall be as follows. During an archery-only open season, deer may be taken only as provided for in §65.11(2) and (3) of this title (relating to Means and Methods).

(A) In Armstrong, Borden, Briscoe, Carson, Childress, Coke, Collingsworth, Cottle, Crane, Crockett, Crosby, Culberson, Dallam, Deaf Smith, Dickens, Donley, Ector, El Paso, Fisher, Floyd, Foard, Garza, Gray, Hall, Hardeman, Hartley, Hemphill, Hudspeth, Hutchinson, Jeff Davis, Kent, King, Lipscomb, Loving, Midland, Moore, Motley, Ochiltree, Oldham, Potter, Presidio, Randall, Reagan, Reeves, Roberts, Scurry, Stonewall, Swisher, Upton, Val Verde, Ward, and Winkler counties, there is an open season.

(i) Open season: from the Saturday closest to September 30 for 30 consecutive days.

(ii) Bag limit: one buck deer.

(B) In Brewster, Pecos, and Terrell counties, there is an open season.

(i) Open season: from the Saturday closest to September 30 for 30 consecutive days.

(ii) Bag limit: two deer, no more than one buck.

(C) In all other counties, there is no archery-only open season for mule deer.

§65.46. Squirrel: Open Seasons, Bag, and Possession Limits.

(a) In Brazos, Burleson, Collin, Dallas, Ellis, Falls, Grayson, Grimes, Kaufman, Madison, Milam, and Rockwall counties, there is an open season from September 1 through August 31.

(1) Daily bag limit: 10 squirrels.

(2) Possession limit: 20 squirrels.

(b) In Anderson, Angelina, Bowie, Camp, Cass, Chambers, Cherokee, Delta, Fannin, Franklin, Freestone, Galveston, Gregg, Hardin, Harris, Harrison, Henderson, Hopkins, Houston, Hunt, Jasper, Jefferson, Lamar, Leon, Liberty, Limestone, Marion, Montgomery, Morris, Nacogdoches, Navarro, Newton, Orange, Panola, Polk, Rains, Red River, Robertson, Rusk, Sabine, San Augustine, San Jacinto, Shelby, Smith, Titus, Trinity, Tyler, Upshur, Van Zandt, Walker, and Wood counties, there is a general open season for squirrel.

(1) Open season: May 1 - May 31 and October 1 through the first Sunday in February [January 15].

(2) Daily bag limit: 10 squirrels.

(3) Possession limit: 20 squirrels.

(c) In Andrews, Bailey, Borden, Brewster, Briscoe, Carson, Castro, Cochran, Crane, Culberson, Dallam, Dawson, Deaf Smith, Ector, El Paso, Floyd, Gaines, Glasscock, Hale, Hansford, Hartley, Hockley, Howard, Hudspeth, Hutchinson, Jeff Davis, Lamb, Loving, Lubbock, Lynn, Martin, Midland, Moore, Oldham, Parmer, Potter, Presidio, Reagan, Reeves, Sherman, Swisher, Terry, Upton, Ward, Winkler, and Yoakum counties, there is no open season on squirrel.

(d) In all other counties, there is an open season from September 1 through August 31, during which there is no bag limit.

[§65.50. Elk: Open seasons and annual bag limits.]

[§65.52. Aoudad Sheep: Open seasons and annual bag limits.]

§65.54. Game Birds: Open Seasons and Bag Limits. Except as provided in Subchapter K of this chapter (relating to Raptor Proclamation, it [It] is unlawful to hunt a game bird at any time other than during the open seasons provided in this chapter, or to take more than the daily bag limits, or to have in possession a game bird taken at any time other than during the open seasons. On the first day of any open season the possession limit is the same as the daily bag limit.

This agency hereby certifies that the proposal has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be within the agency's authority to adopt.

Issued in Austin, Texas on

William D. Harvey, Ph.D.
Regulatory Coordinator
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
1-800-792-1112, extension 4642 or 512-389-4642

The amendments are proposed under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61, Uniform Wildlife Regulatory Act (Wildlife Conservation Act of 1983), which provides the Commission with authority to establish wildlife resource regulations for this state.

The amendments affect Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 61.

§65.71. Reservoir Boundaries. Reservoir boundaries for daily bag, possession, and length limits.

(1) Buchanan Reservoir in Burnet, Lampasas, Llano and San Saba counties comprises all impounded waters of the Colorado River from Lake Buchanan dam upstream to the U.S. Highway 190 bridge.

(2) Caddo Lake in Marion and Harrison counties comprises all impounded waters of Big Cypress Bayou from the Texas-Louisiana border upstream to the State Highway 43 bridge.

(3) Canyon Reservoir in Comal County comprises all impounded waters of the Guadalupe River from the Canyon dam upstream to the U.S. Highway 281 bridge.

(4) Cooper Lake in Delta and Hopkins counties comprises all waters within the Corps of Engineers lands on Cooper Lake upstream from State Highway 19/154 and downstream from F.M. Road 71.

(5) Gibbons Creek Reservoir in Grimes County comprises all waters within the Texas Municipal Power Agency property boundaries.

(6) Inks Lake in Burnet and Llano counties comprises all impounded waters of the Colorado River from the Roy Inks dam (Inks Lake dam) upstream to the Lake Buchanan dam.

(7) Lake Conroe in Montgomery and Walker counties comprises all impounded waters of the West Fork of the San Jacinto River from the Lake Conroe dam upstream to F.M. Road 1791 bridge.

(8) Lake Georgetown in Williamson County comprises all impounded waters of the North Fork of the San Gabriel River from the Lake Georgetown dam upstream to U.S. Highway 183 bridge.

(9) Lake Limestone in Leon, Limestone, and Robertson counties comprises all impounded waters of the Navasota River from the Lake Limestone dam upstream to the Fort Parker State Park Lake dam.

(10) Lake Livingston in Leon, Houston, Madison, Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity, and Walker counties comprises all impounded waters of the Trinity River from the Lake Livingston dam upstream to the lock and dam near State Highway 7.

(11) Lake Lyndon B. Johnson in Burnet and Llano counties comprises all impounded waters of the Colorado River from the Alvin Wirtz Dam (Lake Lyndon B. Johnson dam) upstream to the Roy Inks dam (Inks Lake dam) including the Llano River upstream to the State Highway 16 bridge and Sandy Creek upstream to the State Highway 71 bridge.

(12) Lake Marble Falls in Burnet County comprises all impounded waters of the Colorado River from the Max Starcke dam (Lake Marble Falls dam) upstream to the Alvin Wirtz dam (Lake Lyndon B. Johnson dam).

(13) Lake O'the Pines in Camp, Marion, Morris, and Upshur counties comprises all impounded waters of Big Cypress Creek from Ferrell's Bridge dam (the Lake O'the Pines dam) upstream to U.S. Highway 259 bridge and Big Cypress Creek from Ferrell's Bridge dam downstream to Ferrell's Bridge crossing.

(14) Lake Palestine in Anderson, Cherokee, Henderson, Smith, and Van Zandt counties comprises all impounded waters of the Neches River from the Blackburn Crossing dam (the Lake Palestine dam) upstream to F.M. Road 279 bridge including Kickapoo and Flat Creeks in Henderson County.

(15) Lake Pat Mayse in Lamar County comprises all impounded waters of Sanders Creek from Pat Mayse Lake Dam upstream to County Road 35610 and Sanders Creek from Pat Mayse Lake Dam downstream to F.M. Road 197.

(16)[(15)] Lake Somerville in Burleson, Lee, Milam, and Washington counties comprises all impounded waters of Yegua, East Yegua, and Middle Yegua Creeks upstream from the Lake Somerville dam.

(17)[(16)] Lake Travis in Burnet and Travis counties comprises all impounded waters of the Colorado River from the Mansfield dam (Lake Travis dam) upstream to the Max Starcke dam (Lake Marble Falls dam) including the Pedernales River upstream to the Hammetts Crossing-Hamilton Pool Road bridge.

(18)[(17)] Purtis Creek State Park Lake in Henderson and Van Zandt counties comprises all waters within the Purtis Creek State Park boundaries.

§65.72. Fish.

(a) General rules.

(1) There are no public waters closed to the taking and retaining of fish, except as provided in this subchapter.

(2) Game fish may be taken only by pole and line, except as provided in this subchapter.

(3) It is unlawful:

(A) to take or attempt to take, or possess fish within a protected length limit, in greater numbers, by other means, or at any time or place, other than as permitted under this subchapter;

(B) while fishing on or in public waters to have in possession fish in excess of the daily bag limit or fish within a protected length limit as established for those waters;

(C) to use game fish or any part thereof as bait;

(D) to possess a finfish of any species, except broadbill swordfish, shark or king mackerel, taken from public water that has the head or tail removed until such person finally lands the catch on the mainland, a peninsula, or barrier island not including jetties or piers and does not transport the catch by boat;

(E) to use airboats or jet-driven devices to pursue and harass or harry fish; or

(F) to release into the public waters of this state a fish with a device or substance implanted or attached that is designed, constructed or adapted to produce an audible, visual, or electronic signal used to monitor, track, follow, or in any manner aid in the location of the released fish.

(4) Finfish tags: Prohibited Acts.

(A) No person may purchase or use more finfish (red drum or tarpon) tags during a license year than the number and type authorized by the commission, excluding duplicate tags issued under Parks and Wildlife Code, §46.006.

(B) It is unlawful to:

(i) use the same finfish tag for the purpose of tagging more than one finfish;

(ii) use a finfish tag in the name of another person;

(iii) use a tag on a finfish for which another tag is specifically required;

(iv) catch and retain a finfish required to be tagged and fail to immediately attach and secure a tag, with the day and month of catch cut out, to the finfish at the narrowest part of the finfish tail, just ahead of the tail fin;

(v) have in possession both a Red Drum Tag and a Duplicate Red Drum Tag issued to the same license or salt water stamp holder;

(vi) have in possession both a Red Drum Tag or a Duplicate Red Drum Tag and a Bonus Red Drum Tag issued to the same license or salt water stamp holder;

(vii) have in possession both an Exempt Red Drum Tag and a Duplicate Exempt Red Drum Tag issued to the same license holder; or

(viii) have in possession both an Exempt Red Drum Tag or a Duplicate Exempt Red Drum Tag and a Bonus Red Drum Tag issued to the same holder.

(5) Commercial fishing seasons.

(A) The commercial seasons for finfish species listed in this paragraph and caught in Texas waters shall run concurrently with commercial seasons established for the same species caught in federal waters of the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

(B) The commercial fishing season in the EEZ will be set by the National Marine Fisheries Service for:

(i) red snapper under guidelines established by the Fishery Management Plan for Reef Fish Resources of the Gulf of Mexico; and

(ii) king mackerel under guidelines established by the Fishery Management Plan for Coastal Migratory Pelagic Resources of the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic.

(C) When federal and/or state waters are closed, it will be unlawful to:

(i) purchase, barter, trade or sell finfish species listed in this paragraph landed in this state;

(ii) transfer at sea finfish species listed in this paragraph caught or possessed in the waters of this state; and

(iii) possess finfish species listed in this paragraph in excess of the current recreational bag or possession limit in or on the waters of this state.

(6) Largemouth Bass Trophy Tags for fresh water only. It is unlawful to:
(A) use the same Largemouth Bass Trophy Tag for the purpose of retaining more than one largemouth bass;

(B) use a Largemouth Bass Trophy Tag in the name of another person;

(C) catch and retain a largemouth bass meeting the requirements of the trophy tag and fail to immediately complete the information required on the tag; and

(D) have in possession as issued to the same license holder more than one of the following: a Largemouth Bass Trophy Tag, a Duplicate Largemouth Bass Trophy Tag or Bonus Largemouth Bass Trophy Tag.

(b) Bag, possession, and length limits.

(1) The possession limit does not apply to fish in the possession of or stored by a person who has an invoice or sales ticket showing the name and address of the seller, number of fish by species, date of the sale, and other information required on a sales ticket or invoice.

(2) There are no bag, possession, or length limits on game or non-game fish, except as provided in these rules.

(A) Possession limits are twice the daily bag limit on game and non-game fish except as provided in these rules.

(B) Statewide daily bag and length limits shall be as follows:

Species

Daily Bag

Minimum Length (Inches) Maximum Length (Inches)

Amberjack, greater.

1

32

No limit

Bass: Largemouth, smallmouth, spotted and Guadalupe bass.

5

(in any combination)

Largemouth and Smallmouth bass.

14

No limit

Spotted and Guadalupe bass.

12

No limit

Bass, striped, its hybrids, and subspecies.

5

(in any combination)

18

No limit

Bass, white

25

10

No limit

Catfish: channel and blue catfish, their hybrids, and subspecies.

25

(in any combination)

12

No limit

Catfish, flathead.

5

18

No limit

Catfish, gafftopsail.

No limit

14

No limit

Cobia.

2

37

No limit

Crappie: white and black crappie, their hybrids, and subspecies.

25

(in any combination)

10

No limit

Drum, black.

5

14

30

Drum, red.

3*

20

28*

*Special Regulation: During a license year, one red drum over the stated maximum length limit may be retained when affixed with a properly executed Red Drum Tag, a properly executed Exempt Red Drum Tag or with a properly executed Duplicate Exempt Red Drum Tag and one red drum over the stated maximum length limit may be retained when affixed with a properly executed Bonus Red Drum Tag. Any fish retained under authority of a Red Drum Tag, an Exempt Red Drum Tag, a Duplicate Exempt Red Drum Tag, or a Bonus Red Drum Tag may be retained in addition to the daily bag and possession limit as stated in this section.

Flounder: all species, their hybrids, and subspecies.

10*

14

No limit

*Special Regulation: The daily bag and possession limit for the holder of a valid Commercial Finfish Fisherman's license is 60 flounder, except on board a licensed commercial shrimp boat.

Jewfish.

0

Mackerel, king.

2

23

No limit

Mackerel, Spanish.

7

14

No limit

Marlin, blue.

No limit

114

No limit

Marlin, white.

No limit

81

No limit

Mullet: all species, their hybrids, and subspecies.

No limit

No limit

*

*Special regulation: During the period October through January, no mullet more than 12 inches in length may be taken from public waters or possessed on board a vessel.

Sailfish

No limit

76

No limit

Saugeye

3

18

No limit

Seatrout, spotted.

10

15

No limit

Shark: all species, their hybrids, and subspecies.

5

(in any combination)

No limit

No limit

Sheepshead.

5

12

No limit

Snapper, lane.

No limit

8

No limit

Snapper, red.

5

15

No limit

Snapper, vermilion.

No limit

10[8]

No limit

Snook.

1

24

28

Tarpon.

0

Catch and release only*.

*Special Regulation: One tarpon 80 inches in length or larger may be retained during a license year when affixed with a properly executed Tarpon Tag.
Trout: rainbow and brown trout, their hybrids, and subspecies. 5

(in any combination)

No limit No limit
Walleye. 5 16 No limit

(C) Exceptions to statewide daily bag, possession, and length limits shall be as follows:

(i) The following is a figure:

Location (County)

Daily Bag

Minimum Length (Inches)

Special Regulation

Bass: largemouth, smallmouth, spotted and Guadalupe bass, their hybrids, and subspecies.

Lake Texoma (Cooke and Grayson)

5

(in any combination)

14

In all waters in the Lost Maples State Natural Area (Bandera)

0

No Limit

Catch and release only.

Bass: largemouth and smallmouth

Lake Toledo Bend (Newton, Sabine and Shelby).

8

(in any combination)

14

Possession Limit is 10.

Bass: largemouth.

Lakes Brownwood (Brown), Coleman (Coleman), Conroe (Montgomery and Walker), Fort Phantom Hill (Jones), Granbury (Hood), Lost Creek (Jack), Champion Creek (Mitchell), and Ratcliff (Houston).

5

16

Lakes Fairfield (Freestone), San Augustine City (San Augustine), [Ray Roberts (Denton, Cooke, and Grayson)], Calaveras (Bexar), O.H. Ivie (Coleman, Concho, and Runnels), [Madisonville (Madison)], Bright (Williamson), Cooper (Delta and Hopkins), Alan Henry (Garza), Aquilla (Hill), Bellwood (Smith), Casa Blanca (Webb), Old Mount Pleasant City (Titus), Rusk State Park (Cherokee), Welsh (Titus), Braunig (Bexar), Bryan (Brazos), and Gilmer (Upshur).

5

18

Nelson Park Lake (Taylor) and Buck Lake (Kimble).

0

No Limit

Catch and release and only.

Purtis Creek State Park Lake (Henderson and Van Zandt), Gibbons Creek Reservoir (Grimes), and Raven (Walker).

0

No Limit

Catch and release only except that any bass 22 inches or greater in length may be retained in a live well or other aerated holding device and immediately transported to the Purtis Creek or Huntsville State Park, or Gibbons Creek weigh stations. After weighing, the bass must be released immediately back into the lake or donated to the ShareLunker Program.

Lakes Pinkston (Shelby), Waxahachie (Ellis), Bridgeport (Jack and Wise), Weatherford (Parker), Georgetown (Williamson), Tyler State Park (Smith), Striker (Rusk), Caddo (Marion and Harrison), Burke-Crenshaw (Harris), Grapevine (Denton and Tarrant), [and] Davy Crockett (Fannin) , and Madisonville (Madison).

5

14-18 Inch Slot Limit

It is unlawful to retain largemouth bass between 14 and 18 inches in length.

Lakes Bastrop (Bastrop), Houston County (Houston), Nacogdoches (Nacogdoches), [Fork (Wood, Rains and Hopkins), Monticello (Titus),] Mill Creek (Van Zandt), Joe Pool (Dallas, Ellis, and Tarrant), Walter E. Long (Travis), Timpson (Shelby), and Athens (Henderson).

5

14-21 Inch Slot Limit

It is unlawful to retain largemouth bass between 14 and 21 inches in length. No more than 1 bass 21 inches or greater in length may be retained each day.

Lakes Fayette County (Fayette), Monticello (Titus), and Ray Roberts (Cooke, Denton, and Grayson).

5

14-24 Inch Slot Limit

It is unlawful to retain largemouth bass between 14 and 24 inches in length. No more than 1 bass 24 inches or greater in length may be retained each day.

Lake Fork (Wood, Rains and Hopkins)

5

14-24 Inch Slot Limit

It is unlawful to retain largemouth bass between 14 and 24 inches in length. No more than 1 bass 24 inches or greater in length may be retained each day and this bass must be retained with a properly executed Largemouth Bass Trophy Tag or Bonus Largemouth Bass Trophy Tag.

Bass: smallmouth.

Lakes O. H. Ivie (Coleman, Concho, and Runnels), Belton (Bell and Coryell), Cisco (Eastland), Greenbelt (Donley), Oak Creek (Coke), Stillhouse Hollow (Bell), White River (Crosby), Whitney (Bosque, Hill and Johnson), Alan Henry (Garza), and Devil’s River (Val Verde) from State Highway 163 bridge crossing near Juno downstream to Dolan Falls.

3

18

Lake Meredith (Hutchinson, Moore, and Potter).

3

12-15 Inch Slot Limit

It is unlawful to retain smallmouth bass between 12 and 15 inches in length.

Bass: spotted

Lake Alan Henry (Garza)

3

18

Lake Toledo Bend (Newton, Sabine and Shelby).

8

12

Possession Limit is 10.

Bass: striped, its hybrids, and subspecies.

Lake Toledo Bend (Newton, Sabine and Shelby).

5

No Limit

No more than 2 striped bass 30 inches or greater in length may be retained each day.

Lake Texoma (Cooke and Grayson).

10

(in any combination)

No Limit

No more than 2 striped or hybrid striped bass 20 inches or greater in length may be retained each day. Striped or hybrid striped bass caught and placed on a stringer, in a live well or any other holding device become part of the daily bag limit and may not be released. Possession limit is 10.

Red River (Grayson) from Denison Dam downstream to and including Shawnee Creek (Grayson).

5

(in any combination)

No Limit

Striped bass caught and placed on a stringer, in a live well or any other holding device become part of the daily bag limit and may not be released.

Trinity River (Polk and San Jacinto) from the Lake Livingston dam downstream to the F.M. Road 3278 [3128] bridge.

2

(in any combination)

18

Bass: striped and white bass, their hybrids, and subspecies.

Lake Pat Mayse (Lamar) and Lake O’the Pines (Camp, Marion, Morris, and Upshur)

25

(in any

combination)

10

No more than 5 striped, white, or hybrid striped bass 18 inches or greater in length may be retained each day.

Bass: white

Lakes Conroe, Livingston, Limestone, Palestine, Somerville, Buchanan, Canyon, Georgetown, Inks, Lyndon B. Johnson, Marble Falls, and Travis.

25

12

Lakes Texoma (Cooke and Grayson) and Toledo Bend (Newton, Sabine, and Shelby).

25

No Limit

Catfish: blue.

Lakes E. V. Spence (Coke) and Fort Phantom Hill (Jones)

5

18

Catfish: channel and blue catfish, their hybrids, and subspecies.

Lake Livingston (Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity, and Walker).

50

(in any combination)

12

Possession limit is 50. The holder of a commercial fishing license may not retain channel or blue catfish less than 14 inches in length.

Trinity River (Polk and San Jacinto) from the Lake Livingston dam downstream to the F.M. Road 3278 [3128] bridge.

10

(in any combination)

12

No more than 2 channel or blue catfish 24 inches or greater in length may be retained each day.

Lake Texoma (Cooke and Grayson).

15

(in any

combination)

12

Community fishing lakes, Bellwood (Smith), Dixieland (Cameron), and Tankersley (Titus) [Bell Street (Tom Green)].

5

(in any combination)

12

Catfish: flathead

Lake Texoma (Cooke and Grayson) and the Red River (Grayson) from Denison Dam to and including Shawnee Creek (Grayson).

5

20

Crappie: black and white crappie, their hybrids and subspecies.

Lake Toledo Bend (Newton, Sabine, and Shelby).

50

(in any combination)

10

Possession limit is 50. From December 1, through the last day in February, there is no minimum length limit. All crappie caught during this period must be retained.

Lake Fork (Wood, Rains, and Hopkins) and Lake O’The Pines (Camp, Harrison, Marion, Morris, and Upshur).

25

(in any combination)

10

From December 1, through the last day in February, there is no minimum length limit. All crappie caught during this period must be retained.

Lake Texoma (Cooke and Grayson).

37

(in any combination)

10

Possession limit is 50.

Drum, red.

Lakes Braunig and Calaveras (Bexar), Colorado City (Mitchell), Fairfield (Freestone), Nasworthy (Tom Green), and Tradinghouse Creek (McLennan).

3

20

No maximum length limit.

Shad: gizzard and threadfin shad.

The Trinity River below Lake Livingston between Polk and San Jacinto Counties.

500

(in any combination)

No Limit

Possession Limit 1,000 in any combination.

Sunfish: Bluegill, redear, green, warmouth, and longear sunfish, their hybrids and subspecies.

Purtis Creek State Park Lake (Henderson and Van Zandt).

25

(in any combination)

7

Trout: Rainbow and brown trout, their hybrids, and subspecies.

Guadalupe River (Comal) from the second bridge crossing on the River Road upstream to the easternmost bridge crossing on F.M. Road 306.

1

18

Walleye.

Lake Texoma (Cooke and Grayson).

5

18

(ii) Bag and possession limits for black drum and sheepshead do not apply to the holder of a valid Commercial Finfish Fisherman's License.

(c) Devices, means and methods.

(1) In fresh water only, it is unlawful to fish with more than 100 hooks on all devices combined.

(2) In community fishing lakes and in sections of rivers lying totally within the boundaries of state parks, game and non-game fish may be taken by pole and line only.

(3) It is unlawful to take, attempt to take, or possess fish caught in public waters of this state by any device, means, or method other than as authorized in this subsection.

(4) In salt water only, it is unlawful to fish with any device that is marked with a buoy made of a plastic bottle(s) of any color or size.

(5) Device restrictions.

(A) Cast net. It is unlawful to use a cast net exceeding 14 feet in diameter.

(i) Only non-game fish may be taken with a cast net.

(ii) In salt water, non-game fish may be taken for bait purposes only.

(B) Dip net.

(i) It is unlawful to use a dip net except:

(I) to aid in the landing of fish caught on other legal devices; and

(II) to take non-game fish.

(ii) In salt water, non-game fish may be taken for bait purposes only.

(C) Gaff.

(i) It is unlawful to use a gaff except to aid in landing fish caught by other legal devices, means or methods.

(ii) Fish landed with a gaff may not be below the minimum, above the maximum, or within a protected length limit.

(D) Gig. Only non-game fish may be taken with a gig.

(E) Jugline. For use in fresh water only. Non-game fish, channel catfish, blue catfish and flathead catfish may be taken with a jugline. It is unlawful to use a jugline:

(i) with invalid gear tags. Gear tags must be attached within six inches of the free-floating device, are valid for 30 days after the date set out, and must include the number of the permit to sell non-game fish taken from freshwater, if applicable;

(ii) for commercial purposes that is not marked with an orange free-floating device;

(iii) for non-commercial purposes that is not marked with a white free-floating device;

(iv) in Lake Bastrop in Bastrop County, [Bell Street Lake in Tom Green County,] Bellwood Lake in Smith County, Lake Bryan in Brazos County, Boerne City Park Lake in Kendall County, Dixieland Reservoir in Cameron County, [and] Gibbons Creek Reservoir in Grimes County, and Tankersley Reservoir in Titus County.

(F) Lawful archery equipment. Only non-game fish may be taken with lawful archery equipment or crossbow.

(G) Minnow trap. For use in fresh water only

(i) Only non-game fish may be taken with a minnow trap.

(ii) It is unlawful to use a minnow trap that exceeds 24 inches in length or with a throat larger than one by three inches.

(H) Perch traps. For use in salt water only.

(i) Perch traps may be used only for taking non-game fish.

(ii) Perch traps may not exceed 18 cubic feet.

(iii) Perch traps must be marked with floating visible orange buoy not less than six inches in height and six inches in width. The buoy must have a gear tag attached. Gear tags are valid for 30 days after date set out.

(I) Pole and line.

(i) Game and non-game fish may be taken by pole and line. It is unlawful to take or attempt to take fish with one or more hooks attached to a line or artificial lure used in a manner to foul-hook a fish (snagging or jerking). A fish is foul-hooked when caught by a hook in an area other than the fish's mouth.

(ii) Game and non-game fish may be taken by pole and line, except that in the Guadalupe River in Comal County from the second bridge crossing on River Road upstream to the easternmost bridge crossing on F.M. Road 306, rainbow and brown trout may not be retained when taken by any method except artificial lures. Artificial lures cannot contain or have attached either whole or portions, living or dead, of organisms such as fish, crayfish, insects (grubs, larvae, or adults), or worms, or any other animal or vegetable material, or synthetic scented materials. This does not prohibit the use of artificial lures that contain components of hair or feathers. It is an offense to possess rainbow and brown trout while fishing with any other device in that part of the Guadalupe River defined in this paragraph.

(J) Purse seine (net).

(i) Purse seines may be used only for taking menhaden, only from that portion of the Gulf of Mexico within the jurisdiction of this state extending from one-half mile offshore to nine nautical miles offshore, and only during the period of time beginning the third Monday in April through the first day in November each year.

(ii) Purse seines used for taking menhaden may not be used within one mile of any jetty or pass.

(iii) The purse seine, not including the bag, shall not be less than three-fourths inch square mesh.

(K) Sail line. For use in salt water only.

(i) Non-game fish, red drum, spotted seatrout, and sharks may be taken with a sail line.

(ii) Line length shall not exceed 1,800 feet from the reel to the sail.

(iii) The sail and most shoreward float must be a highly visible orange or red color.

(iv) No float on the line may be more than 200 feet from the sail.

(v) A weight of not less than one ounce shall be attached to the line not less than four feet or more than six feet shoreward of the last shoreward float.

(vi) Reflectors of not less than two square inches shall be affixed to the sail and floats and shall be visible from all directions for sail lines operated from 30 minutes after sunset to 30 minutes before sunrise.

(vii) There is no hook spacing requirement for sail lines.

(viii) No more than one sail line may be used per fisherman.

(ix) Sail lines may not be used by the holder of a commercial fishing license.

(x) Sail lines must be attended at all times the line is fishing.

(xi) Sail lines may not have more than 30 hooks and no hook may be placed more than 200 feet from the sail.

(L) Seine.

(i) Only non-game fish may be taken with a seine.

(ii) It is unlawful to use a seine:

(I) which is not manually operated.

(II) with mesh exceeding 1/2-inch square.

(III) that exceeds 20 feet in length.

(iii) In salt water, non-game fish may taken by seine for bait purposes only.

(M) Shad trawl. For use in fresh water only.

(i) Only non-game fish may be taken with a shad trawl.

(ii) It is unlawful to use a shad trawl longer than six feet or with a mouth larger than 36 inches in diameter.

(iii) A shad trawl may be equipped with a funnel or throat and must be towed by boat or by hand.

(N) Spear. Only non-game fish may be taken with a spear.

(O) Spear gun. Only non-game fish may be taken with spear gun.

(P) Throwline. For use in fresh water only.

(i) Non-game fish, channel catfish, blue catfish and flathead catfish may be taken with a throwline.

(ii) It is unlawful to use a throwline in Lake Bastrop in Bastrop County, [Bell Street Lake in Tom Green County,] Bellwood Lake in Smith County, Lake Bryan in Brazos County, Boerne City Park Lake in Kendall County, Dixieland Reservoir in Cameron County, [and] Gibbons Creek Reservoir in Grimes County, and Tankersley Reservoir in Titus County.

(Q) Trotline.

(i) Non-game fish, channel catfish, blue catfish, and flathead catfish may be taken by trotline.

(ii) It is unlawful to use a trotline:

(I) with a mainline length exceeding 600 feet;

(II) with invalid gear tags. Gear tags must be attached within three feet of the first hook at each end of the trotline and are valid for 30 days after date set out, except on saltwater trotlines, a gear tag is not required to be dated;

(III) with hook interval less than three horizontal feet;

(IV) with metallic stakes; or

(V) with the main fishing line and attached hooks and stagings above the water's surface.

(iii) In fresh water, it is unlawful to use a trotline:

(I) with more than 50 hooks;

(II) in Gibbons Creek Reservoir in Grimes County, Lake Bastrop in Bastrop County, Fayette County Reservoir in Fayette County, Pinkston Reservoir in Shelby County, Lake Bryan in Brazos County, Bellwood Lake in Smith County, Dixieland Reservoir in Cameron County, [Bell Street Lake in Tom Green County, and] Boerne City Park Lake in Kendall County, and Tankersley Reservoir in Titus County.

(iv) In salt water:

(I) it is unlawful to use a trotline:

(-a-) in or on the waters of the Gulf of Mexico within the jurisdiction of this state;

(-b-) from which red drum, sharks or spotted seatrout caught on the trotline are retained or possessed;

(-c-) not marked with yellow flagging attached to stakes or with a yellow floating buoy not less than six inches in height and six inches in width attached to end fixtures. All trotline floats must be yellow.

(-d-) placed closer than 50 feet from any other trotline, or set within 200 feet of the edge of the Intracoastal Waterway or its tributary channels. No trotline may be fished with the main fishing line and attached hooks and stagings above the water's surface;

(-e-) baited with other than natural bait, except sail lines;

(-f-) with hooks other than circle-type hook with point curved in and having a gap (distance from point to shank) of no more than one-half inch, and with the diameter of the circle not less than five-eighths inch. Sail lines are excluded from the restrictions imposed by this clause; or

(-g-) in Aransas County in Little Bay and the water area of Aransas Bay within one-half mile of a line from Hail Point on the Lamar Peninsula, then direct to the eastern end of Goose Island, then along the southern shore of Goose Island, then along the causeway between Lamar Peninsula and Live Oak Peninsula, then along the eastern shoreline of the Live Oak Peninsula past the town of Fulton, past Nine-Mile Point, past the town of Rockport to a point at the east end of Talley Island, including that part of Copano Bay within 1,000 feet of the causeway between Lamar Peninsula and Live Oak Peninsula.

(II) No trotline or trotline components, including lines and hooks, but excluding poles, may be left in or on coastal waters between the hours of 1 p.m. on Friday through 1 p.m. on Sunday of each week, except that attended sail lines are excluded from the restrictions imposed by this clause. Under the authority of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Code, §66.206(b), in the event small craft advisories or higher marine weather advisories issued by the National Weather Service are in place at 8:00 a.m. on Friday, trotlines may remain in the water until 6:00 p.m. on Friday. If small craft advisories are in place at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, trotlines may remain in the water until Saturday. When small craft advisories are lifted by 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, trotlines must be removed by 1:00 p.m. on Saturday. When small craft advisories are lifted by 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, trotlines must be removed by 6:00 p.m. on Saturday. When small craft advisories or higher marine weather advisories are still in place at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, trotlines may remain in the water through 1:00 p.m. on Sunday. It is a violation to tend, bait, or harvest fish or any other aquatic life from trotlines during the period that trotline removal requirements are suspended under this provision for adverse weather conditions. For purposes of enforcement, the geographic area customarily covered by marine weather advisories will be delineated by department policy;

(R) Umbrella net.

(i) Only non-game fish may be taken with an umbrella net.

(ii) It is unlawful to use an umbrella net with the area within the frame exceeding 16 square feet.

§65.78. Crabs and Ghost Shrimp.

(a) Bag, possession and size limits.

(1) It is unlawful while fishing on public waters to have in possession crabs or ghost shrimp in excess of the daily bag limit as established for those waters.

(2) There are no bag, possession, or size limits on crabs or ghost shrimp except as provided in these rules.

(3) It is unlawful to:

(A) possess egg-bearing (sponge) crabs or stone crabs;

(B) possess blue crabs less than five inches in width, (measured across the widest point of the body from tip of spine to tip of spine) except that not more than 5%, by number, of undersized crabs may be possessed for bait purposes only, if placed in a separate container at the time of taking;

(C) Remove or possess the left claw from a stone crab (each retained claw must be at least 2-1/2 inches long as measured from the tip of the immovable claw to the first joint behind the claw);

(D) fail to return immediately a stone crab to the waters where caught; or

(E) buy or sell a female crab that has its abdominal apron detached.

(F) possess more than 20 ghost shrimp (Callichiris islagrande, formerly Callianassa islagrande) per person.

(b) Seasons. There are no closed seasons for the taking of crabs, except as listed within this section.

(c) Places. There are no places closed for the taking of crabs, except as listed within this section.

(d) Devices, means and methods.

(1) It is unlawful to take, attempt to take, or possess crabs caught by devices, means, or methods other than as authorized in this subchapter.

(2) Only the following means and methods may be used for taking crabs:

(A) Crab line. It is unlawful to fish a crab line for commercial purposes that is not marked with a floating white buoy not less than six inches in height, six inches in length and six inches in width bearing the commercial crab fisherman’s license plate number in letters of a contrasting color at least two inches high attached to the end fixtures.

(B) Crab trap. It is unlawful to:

(i) fish for commercial purposes with more than 200 crab traps at one time;

(ii) fish for non-commercial purposes with more than 6 crab traps at one time;

(iii) fish a crab trap in the fresh waters of this state;

(iv) fish a crab trap that:

(I) exceeds 18 cubic feet in volume;

(II) is not equipped with at least two escape vents (minimum 2-3/8 inches inside diameter) in each crab-retaining chamber, and located on the outside trap walls of each chamber; and

(III) is not equipped with a degradable panel. A trap shall be considered to have a degradable panel if one of the following methods is used in construction of the trap:

(-a-) the trap lid tie-down strap is secured to the trap [at one end] by a [simple] loop of untreated jute twine (comparable to Lehigh brand # 530) or sisal twine (comparable to Lehigh brand # 390). The trap lid must be secured so that when the twine degrades, the lid will no longer be securely closed; or

(-b-) the trap lid tie-down strap is secured to the trap by a loop of bare untreated steel wire with a diameter of no larger than 20 gauge. The trap lid must be secured so that when the wire degrades, the lid will no longer be securely closed; or

(-c-)[(-b-)]the trap contains at least one sidewall, not including the bottom panel, with a rectangular opening no smaller [in either dimension] than 3 inches by 6 inches. Any obstruction placed in this opening may not be secured in any manner except:

(-1-) it may be laced, sewn, or otherwise obstructed by a single length of untreated jute twine (comparable to Lehigh # 530) or sisal twine (comparable to Lehigh # 390) knotted only at each end and not tied or looped more than once around a single mesh bar. When the twine degrades, the opening in the sidewall of the trap will no longer be obstructed; or

(-2-) it may be laced, sewn, or otherwise obstructed by a single length of bare untreated steel wire with a diameter of no larger than 20 gauge. When the wire degrades, the opening in the sidewall of the trap will no longer be obstructed; or

(-3-) the obstruction may be loosely hinged at the bottom of the opening by no more than two bare untreated steel hog rings and secured at the top of the obstruction in no more than one place by a single length of untreated jute twine (comparable to Lehigh brand # 530), sisal twine (comparable to Lehigh brand # 390), or by a single length of bare untreated steel wire with a diameter of no larger than 20 gauge. When the twine or wire degrades, the obstruction will hinge downward and the opening in the sidewall of the trap will no longer be obstructed.

(v) fish a crab trap for commercial purposes that is not marked with a floating white buoy not less than six inches in height, six inches in length, and six inches in width attached to the crab trap;

(vi) fish a crab trap for commercial purposes that is not marked with a floating white buoy bearing the commercial crab fisherman’s license plate number in letters of a contrasting color at least two inches high attached to the crab trap;

(vii) fish a crab trap that is marked with a buoy bearing a commercial crab fisherman’s license plate number other than the commercial crab fisherman’s license plate number displayed on the crab fishing boat;

(viii)[(vi)]&# 9;fish a crab trap for non-commercial purposes without a floating white buoy not less than six inches in height, six inches in length, and six inches in width, bearing a two-inch wide center stripe of contrasting color, attached to the crab trap;

(ix)[(vii)] fish a crab trap in public salt waters without a valid gear tag. Gear tags are valid for 30 days after date set out.

(x)[(viii)] fish a crab trap within 200 feet of a marked navigable channel in Aransas County; and in the water area of Aransas Bay within one-half mile of a line from Hail Point on the Lamar Peninsula, then direct to the eastern end of Goose Island, then along the southern shore of Goose Island, then along the eastern shoreline of the Live Oak Peninsula past the town of Fulton, past Nine Mile Point, past the town of Rockport to a point at the east end of Talley Island including that part of Copano Bay within 1,000 feet of the causeway between Lamar Peninsula and Live Oak Peninsula or possess, use or place more than three crab traps in waters north and west of Highway 146 where it crosses the Houston Ship Channel in Harris County;

(xi)[(ix)] remove crab traps from the water or remove crabs from crab traps during the period from 30 minutes after sunset to 30 minutes before sunrise;

(xii)[(x)]place a crab trap or portion thereof closer than 100 feet from any other crab trap, except when traps are secured to a pier or dock;

(xiii)[(xi)] fish a crab trap in public waters that is marked with a buoy made of a plastic bottle(s) of any color or size; or

(xiv)[(xii)] use or place more than three crab traps in public waters of the San Bernard River north of a line marked by the boat access channel at Bernard Acres.

(C) Sand pump. It is unlawful for any person to use a sand pump:

(i) that is not manually operated; or

(ii) for commercial purposes.

(D) Other devices. Devices legally used for taking fresh or salt water fish or shrimp may be used to take crab if operated in places and at times authorized by a proclamation of the Parks and Wildlife Commission or the Parks and Wildlife Code.

Issued in Austin, Texas on

William D. Harvey, Ph.D.
Regulatory Coordinator
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
1-800-792-1112, extension 4642 or 512-389-4642


Committee Agenda Item No. 10
Presenter: Jerry Cooke

Regulations Committee
Action
Deer Management Permit
January 1998

I. Discussion: The passage of House Bill 3061 by the Seventy-fifth Legislature delegated to the Commission the authority to create a permit for the management of wild white- tailed deer on acreage enclosed by a fence capable of both retaining deer and preventing entry of deer. Under the provisions of H.B. 3061, the holder of a deer management permit must submit to the Department a management plan, but the Commission is granted broad authority to prescribe the particulars of a management plan, as well as other permit requirements and conditions. The proposed regulations contained in Exhibit A create the Deer Management Permit and impose requirements for the detention and release of deer under a permit, but do not implement any harvest privileges beyond those available under the Statewide Hunting and Fishing Proclamation.

II. Recommendation: The staff recommends the Regulations Committee adopt the following motion:

"The Regulations Committee of the Parks and Wildlife Commisson authorizes staff to publish the proposed regulations concerning Deer Management Permit, contained at Exhibit A, in the Texas Register for public comment."

Attachment - 1

1. Exhibit A - Proposed Regulations concerning Deer Management Permit


Committee Agenda Item No. 10
Exhibit A

Proposed Preamble

1. Introduction.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department proposes new §§65.125-65.131, concerning deer management permits. The new sections are necessary to implement the provisions of House Bill 2542, enacted by the 75th Legislature, which authorized the commission to create and administer a permit for the management of white-tailed deer. The new sections will function to establish a deer management permit; provide for application requirements and fees; establish general provisions; specify facility standards for pens in which deer are detained, the period of time deer may be detained, the requirements for marking detained deer, and the manner in which detained deer are released; provide for the disposition of incidental mortalities; and impose penalties for violations of the new sections.

2. Fiscal Note.

Robert Macdonald, Wildlife Division regulations coordinator, has determined that for each of the first five years that the proposed new sections are in effect, there will be no fiscal implications to state or local governments as a result of enforcing or administering the proposed new sections.

3. Public Benefit - Cost Note.

Mr. Macdonald also has determined that for each of the first five years the proposed new sections are in effect:

(A) The public benefit anticipated as a result of enforcing the rules as proposed will be the enhanced management, stewardship, and conservation of white-tailed deer in this state.

(B) There will be no effect on small businesses. There are no economic costs to persons required to comply with the rules as proposed, because the permit is not mandatory. Persons applying for the permit, however, must pay a $300 fee.

(C) The department has not filed a local impact statement with the Texas Workforce Commission as required by Government Code, §2001.022, as this agency has determined that the rules as proposed will not impact local economies.

(D) The department has determined that there will not be a taking of private property, as defined by Government Code, Chapter 2007, as a result of the proposed rules.

4. Request for Public Comments.

Comments on the proposed rules may be submitted to Jerry Cooke, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, 4200 Smith School Road, Austin, Texas 78744; (512) 389-4774 or 1-800-792-1112.

5. Statutory Authority.

The amendment and new section are proposed under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 43, Subchapter R, as enacted by the passage of House Bill 3061, 75th Texas Legislature, Regular Session, 1997, which provides the commission with authority to establish a permit for the management of wild white-tailed deer; the number, type, and length of time that deer may be detained in an enclosure; and the fee for a deer management permit.

The new sections affect Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 43, Subchapter R.

§65.125. Deer Management Permit (DMP).

(a) The department may issue a Deer Management Permit to a person who has met the requirements of §65.126 of this title (relating to Permit Application and Fees).

(b) A person who possesses a valid Deer Management Permit may trap and detain wild deer according to the provisions of this subchapter and Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 43, Subchapter R. The provisions of Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 43, Subchapters C, E, G, and L do not apply to deer lawfully detained under a valid DMP, and no other permit or license is necessary to conduct activities authorized under a DMP.

§65.126. Permit Application and Fees. Applicants for a DMP shall complete and submit an application on a form supplied by the department. Applications for a DMP shall be accompanied by a nonrefundable fee as specified in §53.8 of this title (relating to Miscellaneous Wildlife Licenses and Permits).

§65.127. General Provisions.

(a) Deer detained under a DMP shall not be commingled with deer held under any other license or permit, except as provided under this subchapter.

(b) Any deer commingled with deer detained under a DMP become wild deer and must be released according to the provisions of §65.130 of this title (relating to Release).

§65.128. Facility Standards.

(a) No pen used to detain deer under a DMP shall contain less than five acres per deer, or 40 acres in area, whichever is larger.

(b) No pen shall at any time contain more than:

(1) one buck deer; and/or

(2) 20 doe deer.

§65.129. Detention and Marking of Deer.

(a) No trapping or detention of deer under a DMP may take place between March 2 and August 31 of any year, both dates inclusive.

(b) All deer detained under a DMP shall be released by March 1 of each year.

(c) All deer detained under a DMP shall be marked by a continuous stripe of yellow paint no less than three inches wide along the spine from the shoulders to the tail.

§65.130. Release. Release of deer shall be effected by removing, for a continuous distance of no less than 100 yards, those components of a pen that serve to maintain deer in a state of detention within the pen. Such components shall be removed for no fewer than 90 consecutive days.

§65.131. Disposition of Mortalities. All deer that die as a result or in the course of activities conducted under a DMP shall be kept in an edible condition and disposed of by one of the following methods:

(1) donation to charitable organizations, public hospitals, orphanages, or indigent persons;

(2) transfer or donation to other persons authorized to receive such specimens under a license or permit issued by the department; or

(3) special disposition as prescribed in writing by the department.

§65.132. Violations and Penalties. A violation of any provision of this subchapter is an offense and is subject to the penalties prescribed by Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 43, Subchapter R.

This agency hereby certifies the proposal has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be within the agency's authority to adopt.

Issued in Austin, Texas on

William D. Harvey, Ph.D.
Regulatory Coordinator
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
1-800-792-1112, extension 4642 or 512-389-4642


Committee Agenda Item No. 11
Presenter: Herb Kothmann

Regulations Committee
Action
Amendments to the Public Lands Proclamation and
Candidate State Parks for 1998-99 Public Hunts
January 1998

I. Discussion: Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 12, Subchapter A, provides that a tract of land purchased primarily for a purpose authorized by the code may be used for any authorized function of the Parks and Wildlife Department if the Commission determines that multiple use is the best utilization of the land's resources. Additionally, Chapter 81, Subchapter E of the code provides the Commission with the authority to establish open seasons, and authorizes the Executive Director to determine bag limits, means and methods, and conditions for the taking of wildlife resources on wildlife management and public hunting areas. Chapter 62, Subchapter D, provides authority to the Commission to prescribe seasons, number, size, kind, sex and the means and methods for the taking of any wildlife on state parks.

The Commission is authorized to provide for hunting or fishing on public lands, and may establish open seasons on public hunting lands. The Executive Director may establish by executive order the Department policy with respect to hunting, fishing, and non-consumptive use on public hunting lands. The proposed amendments to the Public Lands Proclamation are contained in Exhibit A. Exhibit B, Candidate State Parks for 1998-1999 Public Hunts, lists named units of the state park system that are being considered for public hunts during 1998-1999.

II. Recommendation: The staff recommends the Regulations Committee adopt the following motion:

"1. The Regulations Committee of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission authorizes staff to publish proposed amendments to 31 TAC §§65.190, 65.193, and 65.200, concerning the Public Lands Proclamation (located at Exhibit A), in the Texas Register for public comment."
"2. The Regulations Committee of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission authorizes staff to solicit public comment concerning the hunting activities proposed for 41 identified units of the state park system contained in Exhibit B."

Attachments - 2

1. Exhibit A - Proposed Amendments to the Public Lands Proclamation
2. Exhibit B - Candidate State Parks for 1998-1999 Public Hunts


Committee Agenda Item No. 11
Exhibit A

Proposed Preamble

1. Introduction.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department proposes amendments to §65.190, 65.193, and 65.200, concerning Public Lands Proclamation. The amendment to §65.190 adds, deletes, or renames various units of the public hunting system, and provides an access fee for equestrians to areas leased from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The amendment is necessary to maintain a current and accurate list of wildlife management areas and public hunting areas to which the provisions of Subchapter H apply, and to provide additional opportunity for recreational use of public lands. The amendment to §65.193 adds a reference to crossbows, expands the list of species that may be hunted during an extended hunt, and requires an access permit for equestrians on areas leased from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The amendment is necessary to implement provision of House Bill 2542, Acts of the 75th Texas Legislature and to pursue Commission policy by offering increased hunting and recreational opportunity wherever possible. The amendment to §65.200 deletes the 24-hour limitation on the emplacement of temporary blinds on certain wildlife management areas. The amendment is necessary to standardize the time limits for the emplacement of temporary blinds on all wildlife management areas where they are permitted.

2. Fiscal Note.

Robert Macdonald, Wildlife Division regulations coordinator, has determined that for each of the first five years that the proposed rules are in effect, there will be no fiscal implications to state or local governments as a result of enforcing or administering the proposed amendment.

3. Public Benefit - Cost Note.

Mr. Macdonald also has determined that for each of the first five years the amendment and new rule as proposed are in effect:

(A) The public benefit anticipated as a result of enforcing the rules as proposed will be an accurate and current list of public hunting areas and wildlife management areas on which the provisions of Subchapter H apply, increased recreational opportunity for users of the public hunting system, and uniformity in the regulations governing the emplacement of temporary blinds on public lands.

(B) There will be no effect on small businesses. There are no additional economic costs to persons required to comply with the rules as proposed.

(C) The department has not filed a local impact statement with the Texas Workforce Commission as required by Government Code, §2001.022, as this agency has determined that the rules as proposed will not impact local economies.

(D) The department has determined that there will not be a taking of private real property, as defined by Government Code, Chapter 2007, as a result of the proposed rules.

4. Request for Public Comments.

Comments on the proposed rules may be submitted to Herb Kothmann, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, 4200 Smith School Road, Austin, Texas 78744; (512) 389- or 1-800-792-1112.

5. Statutory Authority.

The new sections are proposed under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 81, Subchapter E, which provides the Parks and Wildlife Commission with authority to establish an open season on wildlife management areas and public hunting lands and authorizes the executive director to regulate numbers, means, methods, and conditions for taking wildlife resources on wildlife management areas and public hunting lands; Chapter 12, Subchapter A, which provides that a tract of land purchased primarily for a purpose authorized by the code may be used for any authorized function of the department if the commission determines that multiple use is the best utilization of the land's resources; and Chapter 62, Subchapter D, which provides authority, as sound biological management practices warrant, to prescribe seasons, number, size, kind, and sex and the means and method of taking any wildlife.

The amendments affect Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 81, Subchapter E; Chapter 12, Subchapter A; and Chapter 62, Subchapter D.

§65.190. Application.

(a)-(b) (No change.)

(c) On U.S. Army Corps of Engineer Lands designated as public hunting lands (Aquilla, Cooper, [Cypress Creek,] Dam B, Granger, Pat Mayse, Ray Roberts, Somerville, and White Oak Creek WMAs), persons other than hunters and equestrian users are exempt from requirements for an access permit.

(d) (No change.)

(e) Public hunting lands include, but are not limited to, the following:

(1) Alabama Creek WMA (Unit 904);

(2) Alazan Bayou WMA (Unit 747);

(3) Aquilla WMA (Unit 748);

(4) Atkinson Island WMA;

(5) Bannister WMA (Unit 903);

(6) Big Lake Bottom WMA (Unit 733);

(7) Black Gap WMA (Unit 701);

[(8) Blue Elbow Swamp WMA (Unit 712);]

(8)[(9)] Caddo Lake State Park and WMA (Unit 730);

(9)[(10)] Caddo National Grasslands WMA (Unit 901);

(10)[(11)] Candy Abshier WMA;

(11)[(12)] Cedar Creek Islands WMA (includes Big Island, Bird Island, and Telfair Island Units);

(12)[(13)] Chaparral WMA (Unit 700);

[(14) Cleavenger Tract (Unit 617);]

(13)[(15)] Cooper WMA (Unit 731);

(14) D.R. Wintermann WMA;

(15)[(16)] Dam B WMA - includes Angelina-Neches Scientific Area (Unit 707);

(16)[(17)] Designated Units of the Las Palomas WMA;

(17)[(18)] Designated Units of Public Hunting Lands Under Short-Term Lease;

(18)[(19)] Designated Units of the Playa Lakes WMA;

(19)[(20)] Designated Units of the State Park System;

(20)[(21)] Elephant Mountain WMA (Unit 725);

(21)[(22)] Gene Howe WMA (Unit 755) -includes Pat Murphy Unit (Unit 706);

(22)[(23)] Granger WMA (Unit 709);

(23)[(24)] Guadalupe Delta WMA (Unit 729) - includes Mission Lake Unit (720), Guadalupe River Unit (723), and Hynes Bay Unit (724);

(24)[(25)] Gus Engeling WMA (Unit 754);

(25)[(26)] James Daughtrey WMA (Unit 713);

(26)[(27)] J. D. Murphree WMA (Unit 783);

(27)[(28)] Keechi Creek WMA (Unit 726);

(28)[(29)] Kerr WMA (Unit 756);

[(30) Lands Within a Desert Bighorn Sheep Cooperative Unit;]

(29)[(31)] Lower Neches WMA (Unit 728) - includes Old River Unit and Nelda Stark Unit;

(30)[(32)] Mad Island WMA (Unit 729) [- includes Matagorda Peninsula Unit (Unit P150)];

(31) Mason Mountain WMA;

(32)[(33)] Matador WMA (Unit 702);

(33)[(34)] Matagorda Island State Park and WMA (Unit 8134 [722]);

(34)[(35)] M. O. Neasloney WMA;

(35)[(36)] Moore Plantation WMA (Unit 902);

(36)[(37)] North Toledo Bend WMA (Unit 615);

(37)[(38)] Old Sabine Bottom WMA (Unit 732);

(38)[(39)] Old Tunnel WMA;

(39)[(40)] Pat Mayse WMA (Unit 705);

(40)[(41)] Peach Point WMA (Unit 721) -includes Bryan Beach Unit (Unit 8075 [P075]);

(41)[(42)] Ray Roberts WMA (Unit 501);

(42) Redhead Pond WMA;

(43) Richland Creek WMA (Unit 703);

(44) Sam Houston National Forest WMA (Unit 905);

[(45) Sheldon State Park and WMA (Unit 716);]

(45)[(46)] Sierra Diablo WMA (Unit 767);

(46)[(47)] Somerville WMA (Unit 711);

(47)[(48)] Tawakoni WMA (Unit 708);

(48)[(49)] Walter Buck WMA (Unit 757);

(49) Welder Flats WMA;

(50) White Oak Creek WMA (Unit 727); and

(51) Other numbered units of public hunting lands.

§65.193. Access Permit Required and Fees.

(a)-(b) (No change.)

(c) Annual Public Hunting (APH) Permit and Limited Public Use (LPU) Permit.

(1)-(2) (No change.)

(3) The APH permit is required of each person 17 years of age or older who enters the Alabama Creek, Bannister, Caddo, Moore Plantation, or Sam Houston National Forest WMAs and possesses a centerfire or muzzleloading rifle or handgun, a shotgun with shot larger than #4 lead, or lawful archery equipment or crossbow with broadhead hunting point; however, a person 17 years of age or older may enter these units with other legal devices for hunting as defined in this subchapter and take specified legal wildlife resources provided the person possesses a LPU permit.

(4) The permits required under paragraphs (1) - (3) of this subsection are not required for:

(A) persons who enter on United States Forest Service lands designated as a public hunting area (Alabama Creek, Bannister, Caddo, Moore Plantation, and Sam Houston National Forest WMAs) or any portion of Units 902 and 903 for any purpose other than hunting; [or]

(B) persons who enter on U.S. Army Corps of Engineers lands (Aquilla, Cooper, [Cypress Creek], Dam B, Granger, Pat Mayse, Ray Roberts, Somerville, and White Oak Creek WMAs) designated as public hunting lands for purposes other than hunting or equestrian use; or[.]

(C) persons who enter Caddo Lake State Park and Wildlife Management Area and do not hunt or set foot upon the land.

(5)-(6) (No change.)

(d)-(i) (No change.)

(j) The fees for special and regular permits are:

(1) deer, exotic mammal, pronghorn antelope, javelina, turkey, coyote, alligator (standard period) - $50;

(2) deer, exotic mammal, pronghorn antelope, javelina, turkey, coyote, alligator (extended period)[- extended period] - $100;

(3)-(4) (No change.)

(k)-(o) (No change.)

§65.200. Construction of Blinds.

(a) The construction of permanent blinds is prohibited.

(b) The use of temporary blinds is permitted only if such structures are not:

(1) nailed to trees;

(2) emplaced longer than 72 hours [(24 hours maximum on the Alabama Creek, Bannister, Caddo, Moore Plantation, and Sam Houston National Forest WMAs)]; or

(3) otherwise prohibited for the specific activity, area, or time period.

(c) It is an offense for a person to:

(1) fail to remove all introduced materials used in constructing a temporary blind at the conclusion of public use activity;

(2) place a blind within 50 yards of any designated road, designated campsite, or public hunting lands boundary; or

(3) attempt to establish preferential rights to use of a specific location through construction of a temporary blind. A temporary blind shall be equally available to all public users on a first-come-first-served basis.

This agency hereby certifies that the proposal has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be within the agency's authority to adopt.

Issued in Austin, Texas on

William D. Harvey, Ph.D.
Regulatory Coordinator
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
1-800-792-1112, extension 4642 or 512-389-4642


Committee Agenda Item No. 11
Exhibit B

Candidate State Parks for 1998-99 Public Hunts

NAME OF PARK LEGAL SPECIES
Arroyo Colorado feral hog
Atlanta deer, exotics
Big Bend Ranch javelina, exotics, quail
Brazos Bend deer, exotics
Brownwood deer, exotics
Bryan Beach dove, waterfowl
Caddo Lake SP/WMA all legal species in Marion and Harrison counties
Caprock Canyons exotics
Choke Canyon - Calliham Unit deer, exotics, javelina
Choke Canyon - North Shore Unit deer, exotics
Colorado Bend deer, exotics, feral hog, turkey
Davis Mountains javelina
Devils River deer, exotics
Devils Sinkhole deer, exotics
Martin Dies, Jr. squirrel
Dinosaur Valley deer, exotics
Enchanted Rock deer, exotics
Fairfield Lake deer, exotics
Fort Boggy deer, exotics
Garner deer, exotics
Guadalupe River deer, exotics
Hill Country deer, exotics
Honey Creek deer, exotics, dove
Huntsville deer, exotics
Inks Lake / Longhorn Caverns deer, exotics
Kickapoo Caverns deer, exotics
Lake Houston deer, exotics, squirrel
Lake Mineral Wells deer, exotics
Lake Somerville - Trailway deer, exotics
Lake Whitney deer, exotics
Lost Maples deer, exotics
Matagorda Island SP/WMA deer, exotics, feral hog, waterfowl
Mother Neff dove
Pedernales Falls deer, exotics
Possum Kingdom deer, exotics
Resaca de la Palma feral hog, quail, dove, rabbits
San Angelo deer, exotics, turkey, quail, dove, waterfowl, squirrel, rabbits
Sea Rim waterfowl
South Llano River exotics
Tony Houseman SP/WMA deer, exotics, quail, dove, waterfowl, furbearers, squirrel, rabbits

Committee Agenda Item No. 12
Presenter: Matt Wagner

Regulations Committee
Action
Creation of a Nongame Permit
January 1998

I. Discussion: Chapter 67 of the Parks and Wildlife Code requires the department to develop and administer management programs to ensure the viability of nongame fish and wildlife, and authorizes the Commission to establish any limitations on the take, possession, transportation, exportation, and sale of nongame fish and wildlife that the department considers necessary to manage such species. Staff briefed the Regulations Committee at the November 1997 meeting on the status of nongame populations and the need for a monitoring regime to assess commercial trade in nongame species. The Committee at that time authorized staff to draft proposed regulations, which are located at Exhibit A.

II. Recommendation: The staff recommends the Regulations Committee adopt the following motion:

"The Regulations Committee of the Parks and Wildlife Commission authorizes staff to publish proposed 31 TAC §§ 65.325-65.332, concerning the take, possession, and sale of nongame wildlife, in the Texas Register for public comment."

Attachment - 1

1. Exhibit A - Proposed Nongame Permit Regulations


Committee Agenda Item No. 12
Exhibit A

Proposed Preamble

1. Introduction.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department proposes new §§65.325-65.332, concerning permits for the sale or possession of nongame wildlife. The new rules are necessary to allow the department to monitor the impact of commercial trade and collection activities on the state’s nongame wildlife populations in order to determine if there are nongame species in need of management. The new rules will function by requiring persons engaged in the collection or sale of nongame wildlife to possess a permit and comply with reporting requirements.

2. Fiscal Note.

Robert Macdonald, Wildlife Division regulations coordinator, has determined that for each of the first five years that the new rules as proposed are in effect, there will be no additional fiscal implications to state or local governments as a result of enforcing or administering the new rules.

3. Public Benefit - Cost Note.

Mr. Macdonald also has determined that for each of the first five years the new rules as proposed are in effect:

(A) The public benefit anticipated as a result of enforcing the rules as proposed will be the acquisition of data that will provide a basis for the enhanced protection of the protected wildlife of the state and allow the department to determine what, if any, additional regulatory measures are needed.

(B) There will be an effect on small businesses and additional economic costs to persons required to comply with the rules as proposed; specifically, the $5 cost of acquiring a resident commercial collection permit ($150 nonresident), or the $150 cost of acquiring a resident nongame dealer permit ($250 nonresident).

(C) The department has not filed a local impact statement with the Texas Workforce Commission as required by Government Code, §2001.022, as this agency has determined that the rules as proposed will not impact local economies.

(D) The department has determined that there will not be a taking of private real property, as defined by Government Code, Chapter 2007, as a result of the proposed new sections.

4. Request for Public Comments.

Comments on the proposed rules may be submitted to Matt Wagner, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, 4200 Smith School Road, Austin, Texas 78744; (512) 389-4396 or 1-800-792-1112.

5. Statutory Authority.

The new sections are proposed under Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 67, which provides the commission with authority to establish any limits on the take, possession, propagation, transportation, importation, exportation, sale, or offering for sale of nongame fish or wildlife.

The new sections affect Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 67.

PERMITS FOR THE SALE OR POSSESSION OF NONGAME WILDLIFE

§65.325. Applicability. This subchapter applies to the nongame wildlife listed in §65.331 of this title (relating to Affected Species), living or dead, including parts of nongame wildlife and captive-bred nongame wildlife, but does not apply to aquatic species, bobcat pelts, or processed products.

§65.326. Definitions. The following words and terms, when used in this subchapter, shall have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise. All other words and terms shall have the meanings assigned by the Parks and Wildlife Code or regulatory definitions adopted under the authority of Parks and Wildlife Code.

Captive-bred - Any wildlife born in captivity from parents held in captivity.

Processed product - Nongame wildlife or parts of nongame wildlife that have been treated or prepared, by means other than refrigeration or freezing, to prevent decomposition.

Resale - Any transaction or activity in which a person purchases nongame wildlife or otherwise acquires nongame wildlife for a consideration and subsequently transfers or delivers the same nongame wildlife to any person in exchange for compensation or remuneration of any kind.

§65.327. Permit Required.

(a) Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, no person in this state may possess more than six specimens of nongame wildlife unless that person possesses a valid commercial collection permit or a valid nongame dealer permit.

(b) No person in this state may resell nongame wildlife unless that person possesses a valid nongame dealer permit.

(c) This subchapter does not apply to:

(1) persons purchasing, possessing, or selling processed products; or

(2) teachers at accredited primary or secondary educational institutions, provided that the nongame wildlife is possessed solely for educational purposes and is not sold or transferred to another person for the purpose of sale.

(d) A permit required by this subchapter shall be possessed on the person of the permittee during any activity governed by this subchapter.

(e) A nonresident conducting any activity governed by this subchapter shall possess the appropriate nonresident permit for that activity.

§65.328. Permit Restrictions.

(a) A person possessing a valid commercial collection permit may sell wildlife collected under that permit to anyone and may purchase lawfully collected nongame wildlife from anyone.

(b) A person possessing a valid nongame dealer permit may purchase lawfully collected nongame wildlife and resell lawfully collected nongame wildlife to anyone.

§65.329. Permit Application.

(1) An applicant for a permit under this subchapter shall submit to the department a completed application on a form supplied by the department, accompanied by the nonrefundable fee specified in Chapter 53 of this title (relating to Finance).

(2) The department reserves the right to refuse permit issuance to any person finally convicted of any violation of any provision of Parks and Wildlife Code.

(3) The department shall not issue a permit to any person who has not complied with the applicable requirements of §65.330 of this title (relating to Reporting Requirements).

(4) Permits shall be issued to named individuals only and shall not be issued in the name of any firm, organization, or institution.

§65.330. Record and Reporting Requirements.

(a) A person possessing a commercial collection permit shall:

(1) maintain and possess upon their person during any collection activities a daily collection log indicating the date, location, and number of specimens of each species collected and/or possessed during the period of validity of the permit, which shall be presented upon demand to a game warden of the department; and

(2) complete and submit to the department a quarterly report, accompanied by the permittee's collection log, by the 15th of September, December, March, and June of each year.

(b) A person possessing a nongame dealer permit shall:

(1) maintain and make available to a game warden of the department upon demand a current daily record of all purchases and sales;

(2) maintain and make available to a game warden of the department upon demand an invoice or receipt identifying the source or origin of each specimen of nongame wildlife in possession; and

(3) complete and submit to the department a quarterly report by the 15th of September, December, March, and June of each year.

(c) All records required by this section shall be retained and kept available for inspection for a period of one year following the period of validity of the permit under which they are required to be kept.

§65.331. Affected Species. The following species are subject to the provisions of this subchapter.

§65.332. Violations and Penalties. A person who violates any provision of this subchapter commits an offense and is subject to the penalties provided by Parks and Wildlife Code, §67.005.

This agency hereby certifies that the proposal has been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be within the agency's authority to adopt.

Issued in Austin, Texas on

William D. Harvey, Ph.D.
Regulatory Coordinator
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
1-800-792-1112, extension 4642 or 512-389-4642


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