Lake Placid - 2004 Survey Report
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Prepared by Aaron Walters and John Findeisen
Inland Fisheries Division
District 1-E, Mathis, 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.
Lake Placid was surveyed in May 2005 using electrofishing, trap nets, and gill nets. Electrofishing and trap net surveys were conducted in May 2005 due to low water level, as a result of damaged dam gates in November 2004, prevented access to the reservoir. This report summarizes the results of the surveys and contains a management plan for the reservoir based on those findings.
Lake Placid is a 214-acre reservoir located on the Guadalupe River in Guadalupe County one-half mile southwest of Seguin. This small impoundment, constructed in 1928, is fed by the Guadalupe River watershed and used for water supply, hydroelectric generation, and recreation. The reservoir is controlled by the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority (GBRA). Although most of the shoreline is privately owned, public boat access is adequate, while public access for bank and handicap anglers is inadequate. The lake is typically riverine with a maximum depth of 40 feet. Substrate in the upper portion of the reservoir is composed primarily of rock and gravel, and in the middle and lower portions of the reservoir is composed of clay, sand and silt. In addition to boat docks, piers, bulkheads, and riprap, littoral habitat consists of many native aquatic species including rushes, cattail, pondweed, American lotus, and spatterdock. There are some areas of submerged timber, and overhanging terrestrial vegetation is abundant. Introduced exotics, such as water hyacinth, water lettuce, and hydrilla caused access problems for many years until aggressive chemical and biological controls were implemented. No evidence of hydrilla was found in Lake Placid in 2005. Water hyacinth and water lettuce, although still present, were not found in high concentrations. Two major flood events have occurred causing damage to the gates of the dam since the last survey report in 2001, and thus resulted in two sustained periods of low water conditions. The first low water event was experienced in spring 2003, while the other was experienced for a 6-month time period between November 2004 and April 2005. Lake Placid was added to the general survey list in 1999.
- Prey species: Gizzard shad and bluegill electrofishing catch rates were 49.0/hour and 39.0/hour, respectively, in 2005. No gizzard shad, <8 inches total length, were collected, thus the IOV for gizzard shad was 0. Bluegill had a PSD of 14, indicating that the size structure of bluegill population in the fishery offers good availability as a forage species.
- Channel catfish: The gill net catch rate for channel catfish declined from 14.4/net night in 2001 to 1.8/net night in 2005. However, all fish captured in the 2005 sampling period were of harvestable size (≥14-inches). Overall condition of channel catfish was good as mean relative weights averaged near 100.
- Redbreast sunfish: Redbreast sunfish catch rate was 5.0/hr in 2005. Due to insufficient sample size, population indices were not calculated, but total length (TL) of the sampled individuals ranged from 5 to 8-inches. Redbreast sunfish do not currently provide a fishery in this reservoir.
- Redear sunfish: Redear sunfish catch rates 12.0/hour in 2005. The current PSD of 27 and RSD-P of 9.0 indicates that the potential for a redear fishery in Lake Placid still persists.
- Largemouth bass: The electrofishing catch rate for largemouth bass was 20.0/hour in 2005. The current PSD and RSD-P for largemouth bass in Lake Placid are 69.0 and 38.0, respectively. Though based upon a relatively small sample size (N=20), these indices suggests that the surviving population is dominated by a number adult individuals that are capable of reproduction. The mean relative weight of the individuals sampled in 2005 was approximately 86.
- Based on current information, the reservoir should continue to be managed with existing regulations.
- Hydrilla, water hyacinth, and water lettuce caused access and recreational problems in the watershed prior to the herbicide treatment and grass carp introductions in 1996. Continued monitoring efforts to detect new infestations should be considered a priority.
- Due to low water levels experienced from November 2004 to April 2005 as a result of damage to the gates of Lake Placid dam, restock both Florida largemouth bass and Imperial-strain channel catfish in the reservoir. Also, change from the existing 4-year sampling rotation of electrofishing, gill netting, and trap netting once every four years to electrofishing, gill netting, and trap netting once every other year to monitor the reproduction and recruitment of the recovering fisheries.
Performance Report as required by Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Act Texas Federal Aid Project F-30-R-29 Statewide Freshwater Fisheries Monitoring and Management Program