Presenter: Bill Robinson

Commission Agenda Item No. 7
Action
Proposed 2006-2007 Oyster Fishery Proclamation
Oyster Daily Sack Limit Rules
May 2006

I. Executive Summary: At the August 25, 2005 Commission meeting an amendment was adopted that was intended to reduce the commercial daily bag limit for oysters. However, the language published in the Texas Register failed to make it clear that 90 sacks was intended to be a daily limit. This action is to correct that error and to make it clear that the daily bag limit for commercial oyster fishermen is 90 sacks and 2 bushels for recreational fishermen. This action also changes the recreational limit units from "bushels" to "sacks" so that all oyster fishermen will be using the same units for measuring take.

II. Discussion: Responsibility for adopting rules covering the taking, attempting to take, possession, purchase, and sale of oyster resources in the salt waters of Texas is set forth in Parks and Wildlife Code, Chapter 76 Oysters. This item proposes amendments to 31 TAC Chapter 58, Subchapter A (Statewide Oyster Fishery), §58.11 Definitions and §58.22 Commercial Fishing.

At the August 25, 2005 Commission meeting, amendments were adopted that created a definition of "sack" for measuring oyster taken from Texas waters. The second part of this action was intended to reduce the commercial daily bag limit for oysters to preserve and stabilize the economic value of oysters taken during the open season. However, the language published in the Texas Register (30 TexReg 6935-6936) only changed the amount of oysters that may be in possession on board a commercial oyster vessel at any one time and did not make it clear that 90 sacks was intended to be a daily limit as well. This action is to correct that error and to make it clear that the daily bag limit for commercial oyster fishermen is 90 sacks and the daily bag limit for recreational fishermen is 2 bushels which is equal to 2 sacks. This action also changes the recreational limit units from "bushels" to "sacks" to remove the possibility of confusion in the fishery that could result from using different units to measure take.

III. Recommendation: Staff recommends that the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission adopt the following motion:

"The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission adopts the 2006-2007 Oyster Fishery Proclamation (located at Exhibit A) as published in the April 21, 2006, issue of the Texas Register (31 TexReg 3351-3353)."

Attachments - 1

  1. Exhibit A – Oyster Fishery Proclamation

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