Trends in finfish landings by sport-boat fishermen in Texas marine waters, May 1974 - May 1986




Osburn, H.R.
Ferguson, M.O.

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Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, Coastal Fisheries Branch


Since May 1974, private-boat fishermen have been routinely interviewed at boat-access sites. Party and headboat fishermen have been routinely monitored since May 1983 by on-site and on-board surveys. The total estimated sport- boat fishing pressure and landings of finfish in 1985-86 was 6,393,300 man-hours and 2,189,700 fish, respectively. From 1983-84 to 1985-86, pressure decreased 6% and landings decreased 28%. Sport-boat fishing in bays and passes accounted for 92% of the pressure and 94% of the landings in 1985-86. In the same year, private-boat fishermen exerted 93% of the pressure and landed 84% of the fish. The high-use season (15 May - 20 November 1985) accounted for 63% of the pressure and 73% of the landings. Thirty-five percent of the 7 year mean annual coastwide private-boat bay and pass fishing pressure and 43% of the landings occurred in the Galveston Bay system. Spotted seatrout (Cynoscion nebulosus) comprised 38% of the 7 year mean annual coastwide private-boat bay and pass landings. Catch rates for spotted seatrout caught by private-boat fishermen declined 60% from 1983-84 to 1984-85 but increased 25% in 1985-86. A reduction was detected in most finfish landings following the coastwide fish kill in December 1983 and January 1984. A resurgence of some landings occurred during 1985-86.


464 pgs.


fishery statistics, fishery surveys, landing statistics, finfish fisheries, catch/effort, catch statistics, finfish, catch composition, sport fishing statistics, spotted seatrout, Cynoscion nebulosus