TPWD seeking input about ‘freeze’ ruling
The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) is asking anglers to comment on a proposal to change rules on how fish are protected during a prolonged coastal freeze.
A TPWD news release pointed out that Texas has about two million acres of bays and estuaries that are susceptible to freezing during severe cold snaps. During the 1980s there were three freezes, including one in 1989 that dropped temperatures near Brownsville to 16 degrees and killed an estimated 11 million fish, the news release said.
The existing “freeze” rule prohibits fishing with a hook and line, pole and line or throw line in an affected area during a freeze closure as declared by TPWD. The proposed change makes it clear that no one can take or attempt to take any aquatic life by any means in an affected area during a freeze.
The rule change is expected to come before the Parks and Wildlife Commission during its Jan 25-26 meeting in Austin. Before then, TPWD will hold public meetings to gather comments, but no dates or locations were announced in the news release.
If approved by the commission, the proposal will be published in the Texas Register and considered for final adoption at the March 28-29 commission meeting.