Lake Raven - 2005 Survey Report
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Prepared by Jeffrey C. Henson and Mark A. Webb
Inland Fisheries Division
District 3-E, Bryan, Texas
This is the authors' summary from a 26-page report. For a copy of the complete report, use the download link in the sidebar.
The Lake Raven fish community was surveyed from June 2005-May 2006 using electrofishing, gill nets, and trap nets. A habitat and vegetation survey was conducted in August 2005. This report summarizes the results of the surveys and contains a management plan for the reservoir based on those findings.
Lake Raven is a 203-acre reservoir located in Huntsville State Park. The reservoir was repaired and re-impounded in 1956 by the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department for recreational use within the Huntsville State Park.
Lake Raven has a history of producing trophy largemouth bass. The population has been managed with a catch-and-release regulation since September 1996. The regulation allows the angler to retain largemouth bass measuring > 21 inches for weighing at a weigh station with subsequent release or, if weighing 13 pounds or more, donation into the Budweiser ShareLunker Program. Lake Raven has been included in Operation World Record, a project designed to compare growth of selectively bred ShareLunker largemouth bass fingerlings to resident bass fingerlings.
Alligatorweed, hydrilla, and water hyacinth have all been problem exotic plants to varying degrees at different times. As a result of a chemical treatment in summer of 2001 and a subsequent stocking of triploid grass carp the following October, hydrilla is no longer a problem. Alligatorweed flea beetles were introduced in the summer of 2003 and spring of 2006. Currently alligatorweed abundance is not problematic. Water hyacinth continues to be a problem and was chemically treated in spring 2006.
- Prey species: The prey fish community at Lake Raven consists primarily of threadfin shad, bluegill, and redear sunfish. Gizzard shad are also present but provide limited forage. Warmouth and spotted sunfish are also present in small numbers.
- Catfishes: Blue and channel catfish are present in Lake Raven but have been poorly represented in standard monitoring samples until this year.
- Largemouth bass: Largemouth bass are abundant in Lake Raven and provide high quality angling opportunities. The lake has a history of producing trophy largemouth bass. Florida largemouth bass fingerlings are periodically stocked to enhance and maintain the trophy potential of the population.
- Crappie: Crappie are present but not a significant component of the fishery at Lake Raven. Trap net catches in monitoring surveys have been low. A few crappie were collected in gill nets in the spring of 2006.
We will continue to monitor the largemouth bass population annually in the fall with electrofishing. Largemouth bass genetics will be assessed, and additional ShareLunker largemouth bass fingerlings will be stocked as part of the Operation World Record Project. Catfish and crappie populations will be monitored every 4 years by gill nets and trap nets, respectively. An access point creel survey will be conducted in the spring of 2009. We will continue to work with park personnel to assess exotic vegetation coverage and implement treatment strategies as needed.
Performance Report as required by Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Act Texas Federal Aid Project F-30-R-31 Statewide Freshwater Fisheries Monitoring and Management Program