The Texas Parks and Wildlife Departmentis looking into proposed changes to trout fishing regulations for the Guadalupe River below Canyon Lake Dam and will have a public meeting this month to gauge public comment and reaction.
The meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Oct. 22 at the McKenna Events Center, Meeting Room A at 801 W. San Antonio St. in New Braunfels.
The current daily limit for rainbow trout and brown trout on the Guadalupe River from the dam to the easternmost bridge crossing on Farm-to-Market Road 306 is five fish of any size. In the section of the river downstream of the FM306 bridge crossing to the second bridge crossing on the River Road, only trout 18 inches and longer may be harvested, and anglers are allowed only one trout per day. Harvest also is restricted in the area to trout caught on artificial lures.
Downstream of the second bridge crossing on the River Road, harvest regulations for trout revert back to the five-fish daily bag limit with trout of any size legal for harvest.
TPWD is considering changing the regulations in the section of the Guadalupe extending upstream from the easternmost .M 306 bridge crossing to a point 800 yards below the dam. Harvest regulations would be changed to a 12- to 18-inch slot length limit — trout smaller than 12 inches or 18 inches and longer may be harvested.
Anglers would be allowed to harvest five trout, but only one 18 inches or longer could be harvested per day. Any trout harvested would have to be caught on artificial lures. The goal of the changes being considered is to increase survival of trout in the section of the river where water temperatures are most favorable during summer while maintaining the opportunity for harvest of trout smaller than 12 inches.
The popular trout fishing area directly below the dam is not included in the section of river being considered for changes in harvest regulations and would not be affected. A five-fish daily bag limit with no minimum length limit would remain in that area.
Expected benefits from the changes being considered are increased survival and angler catch of trout in the reach of the river that is most likely to have water temperatures favorable for trout to survive the summer months, and maintaining the opportunity for harvest of trout under 12 inches in the proposed regulations zone.
Comments also can be directed to Marcos De Jesus, Texas Parks and Wildlife fisheries biologist, at 505 Staples Rd., San Marcos, TX 78666 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rainbow trout have been stocked since 1966 in the Guadalupe below Canyon Lake by TPWD and others through state, federal and private partnerships. Because of coldwater releases from Canyon Lake, the water temperature remains suitable for year-round survival of rainbow trout in most years. These unique habitat conditions laid the foundation for the creation of a popular and economically important trout fishery in this river.