Brownwood Reservoir - 2012 Survey Report
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Prepared by Mandy Scott and Spencer Dumont
Inland Fisheries Division
Region 1, San Angelo, Texas
This is the authors' summary from a 20-page report. For a copy of the complete report, use the download link in the sidebar.
Fish populations in Brownwood Reservoir were surveyed in 2012 using electrofishing and trap netting and in 2013 using gill netting. Historical data are presented with the 2012-2013 data for comparison. This report summarizes the results of the surveys and contains a management plan for the reservoir based on those findings.
Brownwood Reservoir is a 7,300-acre impoundment located on Pecan Bayou in the Colorado River Basin approximately 70 miles southeast of Abilene. It was constructed in 1933 as a municipal water supply and is controlled by the Brown County Water Control and Irrigation District No. 1. Watershed land use was primarily agriculture, residential, and ranching. The reservoir was about 10 ft. below spillway level at time of sampling. Habitat consisted of rocky shoreline, boat docks, and some standing timber, vegetation, and flooded brush.
Palmetto Bass were regularly stocked from the 1980s through the mid-1990s before being discontinued because of lack of directed fishing effort and insufficient availability of Palmetto Bass fingerlings for stocking. Largemouth Bass were managed with a 16-inch minimum length limit (MLL) from 1 September 1993 to 1 September 1999. Blue Catfish were stocked in 2007 and 2010 to improve catfish populations and fisheries.
- Prey species: The prey community included abundant small Gizzard Shad, Threadfin Shad, and small Bluegill.
- Catfishes: The Blue Catfish population is becoming established after stockings in 2007 and 2010. Individuals up to 26 inches in length were captured in the most recent gill netting survey. Channel Catfish abundance declined slightly since the last report.
- Temperate basses: Palmetto Bass have almost disappeared from Brownwood Reservoir (stockings were discontinued in 2002). White Bass appeared to be increasing in number, and were growing up to 14 inches in length.
- Largemouth bass: Catch rate of Largemouth Bass decreased from the previous report, and body condition was poor. Not many Largemouth Bass over the 14-inch minimum length limit were collected, indicating a possible growth problem.
- White crappie: Catch rates of White Crappie declined sharply over the past three surveys, and body condition was fair.
- Work with angling groups to install artificial habitat structures.
- Further investigate Largemouth Bass growth problem and consider proposing a change to harvest regulations.
- Work with area stakeholders to educate the public about preventing the spread of invasive species.
Performance Report as required by Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Act, Texas Federal Aid Project F-221-M-3 Inland Fisheries Division Monitoring and Management Program