White Rock Reservoir - 2003 Survey Report
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Prepared by Thomas Hungerford and Raphael Brock
Inland Fisheries Division
District 2-D, Fort Worth, 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.
White Rock Reservoir was surveyed using trap netting in 2003, electrofishing in 2001, 2002, 2003 and gill netting in 2004. This report summarizes the results of the surveys and contains a management plan for the reservoir based on those findings.
White Rock Reservoir, a 1,088-acre impoundment located on White Rock Creek (a tributary of the Elm Fork of the Trinity River), was constructed in 1910 by the City of Dallas as a municipal water supply; presently it is used only for recreation and flood control. The entire 100-square-mile watershed is located within the city of Dallas. At conservation elevation (458-ft mean-sea-level), the reservoir has an average depth of 9.5 feet. The upper portion of the reservoir was dredged in 1998 and 1999 increasing the average depth of that area to 5 feet. Angler and boat access is adequate. Outboard motors on White Rock Reservoir can be no more than 10.5 HP. However, boats with larger motors can utilize the reservoir using their trolling motors. A spring quarter creel survey was conducted in 2000. There are two handicap specific facilities on the reservoir. At the time of sampling the fishery habitat was primarily native emergent vegetation and cut bank. Since White Rock Reservoir is no longer used for municipal water, a staff gauge is not available to monitor water level fluctuations.
- Prey species: The electrofishing catch rate of 100.0/hour for gizzard shad was lower than the three previous samples (362.0, 324.0, and 149.0 in 1999, 2001, and 2002, respectively) and was lower than the district average of 274.0/hour. The 2003 threadfin shad electrofishing catch rate was 47.0/hour, which was higher than 2002 (9.0/hour) and 2001 (0.0/hour). The catch rate of threadfin shad was lower than the district average of 205.0/hour. Bluegill and longear sunfish are the two principal sunfishes in White Rock Reservoir. The average electrofishing catch rates for bluegill in 2001, 2002, and 2003 was 159.3/hour with a minimum of 78.0/hour in 2002 and a maximum of 210.0/hour in 2003. The average electrofishing catch rates for longear sunfish in 2001, 2002, and 2003 was 81.2/hour with a minimum of 46.0/hour in 2002 and a maximum of 141.0/hour in 2003. The average bluegill electrofishing catch rate was slightly higher than the district average of 158.0/hour, while the longear sunfish average catch rate was slightly lower than the district average of 88.0/hour.
- Channel catfish: The gill netting catch rate for channel catfish in 2004 was 3.2/net night which was higher than in previous samples, indicating some success from the 2000 stocking. It was, however, lower than the district average of 5.7/net night. Creel survey statistics indicated that 6.6% of anglers in the spring quarter of 2000 were targeting channel catfish.
- White bass: The gill netting catch rate for white bass in 2004 was 0.4/net night which was lower than previous samples, and lower than the district average of 8.2 /net night.
- Largemouth bass: The average electrofishing catch rate for largemouth bass in 2001, 2002, and 2003 was 96.7/hour with a minimum of 90.0/hour in 2002 and a maximum of 100.0/hour in 2001 and 2003. This average was slightly lower than the district average of 129.0/hour. Largemouth bass in White Rock Reservoir reach legal size in 2+ years. Electrophoresis revealed that the percentage of Florida bass alleles in the bass sample from White Rock Reservoir was 28.1, indicating that the stocking of Florida bass in 1996 has contributed to the genetics of the bass population. Creel survey statistics revealed that 21.1% of anglers in the spring quarter of 2000 were targeting largemouth bass.
- White crappie: The trap netting catch rate for white crappie in 2003 was 176.0/net night which was well above the district average of 16.1/net night. It takes 1+ years for white crappie to reach harvestable size in White Rock Reservoir. A spring quarter creel survey in 2000 indicated that 10.9% of anglers were targeting white crappie in White Rock Reservoir.
- With the assistance of the White Rock Lake Foundation (WRLF) and Dallas Parks and Recreation, fish feeders will be installed on two existing piers on White Rock Reservoir. A creel survey in 2005-2006 will assess angler success on piers with feeders versus piers without feeders. If this practice proves effective, WRLF plans to seek corporate sponsorship for additional feeders and upgrading existing piers.
- A spring quarter creel survey in 2000 indicated 98.6% of angling was done from the bank. The addition of another sport species that can be angled from the bank would diversify the fishery at White Rock Reservoir. We recommend stocking 2-inch fingerling blue catfish at a rate of 100 per acre in 2005 and stocking success will be evaluated in 2007. Our measure of success will be to attain gill netting catch rates near the district average of 1.6 blue catfish/net night. The forage base is adequate to support blue catfish with abundant populations of gizzard shad, threadfin shad, and sunfishes.
- While a spring quarter creel survey was conducted in 2000, data remain limited. An annual creel survey is planned for 2005-2006 to collect more data on White Rock Reservoir.
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