PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

Sports

June 29, 2012

MOORE COLUMN: Sportsmen's act introduced in Senate

PORT ARTHUR — The American Sportfish Association (ASA) reports the introduction of a large package of pro-sportsmen legislation in the Senate as an amendment to the Farm Bill.

    The Sportsmen’s Act of 2012 addresses several key issues that are impacting the sportfishing industry and anglers.

    "The Sportsmen’s Act of 2012 is the largest, most diverse pro-sportsmen legislative package introduced in recent memory," said American Sportfishing Association Vice President Gordon Robertson.

   "The sportfishing industry thanks Senators Tester and Thune for addressing some of the biggest issues that are affecting sportsmen and women. From improving habitat conservation to increasing public access, passage of the Sportsmen’s Act of 2012 would represent one of the biggest advancements for recreational fishing in years."

    The Sportsmen’s Act of 2012 features 19 bills that promote our nation’s recreational fishing, hunting and shooting heritage, eight of which will have significant specific impacts on the sportfishing community.

    Of particular note are:

    #The Hunting, Fishing and Recreational Shooting Protection Act (S. 838): This section will block ongoing attempts to ban lead in recreational fishing equipment and ammunition by clarifying the Toxic Substances Control Act. Recent attempts to over regulate sportfishing equipment in a non-scientific fashion by anti-fishing interests represent one of the largest threats to the sport.

    #National Fish Habitat Conservation Act (S. 1201): This section will authorize the National Fish Habitat Partnership, an initiative that seeks to protect, restore and enhance fish habitat on a range-wide scale.

    #Report on Artificial Reefs in the Gulf of Mexico — This section would require the Department of the Interior to develop a report on its Idle Iron policy, which requires the removal of idle drilling platforms, in order to develop a coordination strategy between agencies and states.

    These platforms represent the world’s largest network of artificial reefs and provide habitat for marine species on an otherwise barren seafloor.

    Making Public Lands Public Act (S. 901): This section will address one of the most significant obstacles to sportfishing — lack of access to public lands and waters.

    This language will increase access to angling, hunting and recreational shooting opportunities on federal lands, by directing 1.5 percent of the Land and Water Conservation Fund to ensure that fishing, hunting and other recreational activities are accessible.

   We will keep you updated as this bill makes its way through a series of legal hoops.

    Now onto the report…

    North Sabine---Trout and reds remain good on live shad and shrimp fished on the main lake and in the Sabine and Neches Rivers. Flounder are fair on Louisiana shoreline on Gulp and live bait.

    South Sabine---Trout and reds are fair to good under schools of shad along the south shoreline and in the mid lake area. Flounder are fair on light colored jigs tipped with shrimp and on live shad.

    Sabine Pass---Trout remain fair to good at the jetties early on topwaters and live bait. Flounder are slow to fair around drop-offs in the pass. Very few reports from offshore.

    Lake Calcasieu (Big Lake)---Hackberry Rod and Gun reports solid trout action for big trout on live mullet fished around reefs and scattered shell. Reds are good on the reefs and around the shorelines. Very few reports of flounder.

    Sam Rayburn---Texas Parks & Wildlife officials report largemouths are fair on minnows and dark crankbaits. White bass are good on minnows and small spinnerbaits. Crappie are good on minnows over brush piles in 20–25 feet. Bream are good on nightcrawlers. Catfish are fair on trotlines baited with live bait and cut bait.

    Toledo Bend---Holly Park Marina reports largemouths remain slow overall with some smaller fish caught on crankbaits fished in deep water. Mornings and evenings are best. A few bass have come on red bug colored worms. White bass remain good in the river channel and main lake on spoons. Crappie are fair to good in 28 feet of water down 18 feet on shiners. Catfish are fair on trotlines baited with cut and prepared bait.

LAKE LEVELS

TOLEDO BEND: Normal Pool Level: 172.0 Current Pool Level: 169.27 Was 169.22

RAYBURN LAKE: Normal Pool Level: 164 Current Pool Level: 163.24 Was: 163.42

B.A. STEIN HAGEN: Normal Pool Level: 85 Current Pool Level: 82.50 Was: 82.72

 

 

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Sports
  • Bassmaster Elites are coming back

    The Bassmaster Elite Series returns to Southeast Texas in March 2015 to fish out of Orange.
    The announcement was made last week, ahead of Bassmaster’s official tournament schedule announcement and the buzz is already strong in Southeast Texas and beyond.
    I was in Orlando, Fla. attending the ICAST (fishing trade) show and talked with a number of top anglers including Kevin VanDam, Mike Iaconelli and Shaw Grigsby who said it was no surprise they would return considering the massive turnout for the weigh-ins and that the area welcomed them in a very special way.
    It’s far too early to speculate anything like who the top contenders will be or how the fishing will be but there are some things to keep in mind and to look for over the next few months and into the event itself.
    • Prefishing-There is a pre-fishing cutoff that usually extends to right before the Bassmaster Classic and I fully expect most of the anglers in the Elites to come back and prefish.
    Last go-round probably 2/3 of the field fished the area but this time I expect that to be just about everyone. Many of the anglers that did not pre-fish told me they expected to have a lot of water to fish but the sheer volume and diversity was almost overwhelming.
    Beginning probably in the early fall we will see many anglers fishing local waters to get a better idea on how to approach the area.
    • East to West Runs-The Elite anglers fished far and wide but I expect even more running next go-round. After launching from the Simmons Drive Boat Ramp in Orange angler Bill Lowen ran down the Intracoastal, across Galveston Bay and fished in the Clear Lake area and placed in the top 12. The more adventurous anglers will try super long runs, in my opinion, even longer than last time to try and score on big fish. The Intracoastal Canal system makes that possible.
    • Sabine River -Very few of the anglers actually fished in the Sabine River despite the event being called the “Sabine River Challenge”. I think that will change with more anglers running as far north as they can to find pockets of fish that receive little pressure and perhaps a four or five-pounder to push them over the top.
    • Bigger Turnout-Last year some 34,000 people attended the event which set a Bassmaster record for an Elite event.
     It was broken a couple of weeks later in New York but I fully expect the 2015 tournament to draw 40,000 plus. The reason they are coming back is not for the stellar fishing because while we have lots of bass, everyone knows our fishery cannot compare to Toledo Bend for example.
    The support from the public however was amazing and that is what is bringing the top anglers on the planet to fish our area.
    We will have the very best coverage of the event beginning now and leading up to it with exclusive interviews with all of the top pros with not only their thoughts on the big event but with unique tips on how you can catch more fish.
    It’s an exciting time and I look forward to bringing you special coverage on a special event.
    (To contact Chester Moore, e-mail him at cmooreoutdoors@gmail.com. You can hear him on “Moore Outdoors” Fridays from 6-7 p.m. on Newstalk AM 560 KLVI or online at www.klvi.com or watch him on “God’ Outdoors with Chester Moore” Saturdays at 10 a.m. on GETV.org)

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From the Fieldhouse blog