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Reservoir Boundaries

Buchanan Reservoir

Located in Burnet, Lampasas, Llano, and San Saba counties, Buchanan Reservoir encompasses all impounded waters of the Colorado River from Lake Buchanan dam upstream to the U.S. Hwy. 190 bridge.

Caddo Lake

Situated in Marion and Harrison counties, Caddo Lake comprises all impounded waters of Big Cypress Bayou from the Texas-Louisiana border upstream to the State Hwy. 43 bridge.

Canyon Reservoir

Found in Comal County, Canyon Reservoir includes all impounded waters of the Guadalupe River from the Canyon dam upstream to the U.S. Hwy. 281 bridge.

Lake Conroe

Located in Montgomery and Walker counties, Lake Conroe comprises all impounded waters of the West Fork of the San Jacinto River from its dam at Lake Conroe upstream to FM Road 1791 bridge.

Cooper Lake (Jim L. Chapman Lake)

In Delta and Hopkins counties, Cooper Lake encompasses all waters within the Corps of Engineers lands on Cooper Lake upstream from State Hwy. 19/154 and downstream from FM Road 71.

Falcon International Reservoir

Situated in Starr and Zapata counties, Falcon International Reservoir comprises all impounded waters of the Rio Grande from the Falcon Dam upstream to the Zapata/Webb County line.

Lake Georgetown

Located in Williamson County, Lake Georgetown includes all impounded waters of the North Fork of the San Gabriel River from the Lake Georgetown dam upstream to U.S. Hwy. 183 bridge.

Gibbons Creek Reservoir

Situated in Grimes County, Gibbons Creek Reservoir encompasses all waters within the Texas Municipal Power Agency property boundaries.

Inks Lake

Found in Burnet and Llano counties, Inks Lake comprises all impounded waters of the Colorado River from the Roy Inks dam (also known as Inks Lake dam) upstream to the Lake Buchanan dam.

Lake Limestone

In Leon, Limestone, and Robertson counties, Lake Limestone comprises all impounded waters of the Navasota River from the Lake Limestone dam upstream to the Fort Parker State Park Lake dam.

Lake Livingston

Located in Leon, Houston, Madison, Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity, and Walker counties, Lake Livingston includes all impounded waters of the Trinity River from the Lake Livingston dam upstream to the lock and dam near State Hwy. 7.

Lake Lyndon B. Johnson

Situated in Burnet and Llano counties, Lake Lyndon B. Johnson comprises all impounded waters of the Colorado River from the Alvin Wirtz Dam (also known as Lake Lyndon B. Johnson dam) upstream to the Roy Inks dam, including stretches of the Llano River and Sandy Creek.

Lake Marble Falls

Located in Burnet County, Lake Marble Falls encompasses all impounded waters of the Colorado River from the Max Starcke dam (also known as Lake Marble Falls dam) upstream to the Alvin Wirtz dam.

Lake Murvaul

In Panola County, Lake Murvaul comprises all impounded waters of Murvaul Creek Bayou upstream from the Lake Murvaul Dam and downstream from the dam to FM Road 1970 bridge.

Lake O' The Pines

Found in Camp, Marion, Morris, and Upshur counties, Lake O' The Pines comprises all impounded waters of Big Cypress Creek from the Ferrell's Bridge Dam (also known as Lake O' The Pines dam) upstream to U.S. Hwy. 259 bridge.

Lake Palestine

In Anderson, Cherokee, Henderson, Smith, and Van Zandt counties, Lake Palestine includes all impounded waters of the Neches River from the Blackburn Crossing dam (also known as Lake Palestine dam) upstream to FM Road 279 bridge, including Kickapoo and Flat Creeks in Henderson County.

Lake Pat Mayse

Situated in Lamar County, Lake Pat Mayse encompasses all impounded waters of Sanders Creek from upstream to County Road 35610 and culminating at the Pat Mayse Lake Dam.

Purtis Creek State Park Lake

In Henderson and Van Zandt counties, Purtis Creek State Park Lake includes all waters within the Purtis Creek State Park boundaries.

Lake Somerville

Located in Burleson, Lee, Milam, and Washington counties, Lake Somerville comprises all impounded waters of Yegua, East Yegua, and Middle Yegua Creeks upstream from the Lake Somerville dam.

Lake Texoma

Situated in Cooke and Grayson counties, Lake Texoma comprises all impounded waters of the Red River from the Denison Dam upstream to Sycamore Creek.

Sam Rayburn Reservoir

Found in Angelina, Jasper, Nacogdoches, Sabine, and San Augustine counties, Sam Rayburn Reservoir includes all impounded waters of the Angelina River from the Sam Rayburn Dam upstream to the Union Pacific railroad bridge.

Toledo Bend Reservoir

In Newton, Panola, Sabine, and Shelby counties, Toledo Bend Reservoir comprises all impounded waters of the Sabine River from Toledo Bend Dam upstream to the Texas-Louisiana state line in Panola County.

Lake Travis

Located in Burnet and Travis counties, Lake Travis includes all impounded waters of the Colorado River from the Mansfield Dam (also known as Lake Travis Dam) upstream to Max Starcke Dam, including the Pedernales River until it reaches the Hammetts Crossing-Hamilton Pool Road bridge.

Coastal Boundaries: Saltwater vs. Freshwater

Understanding the distinction between freshwater and saltwater is vital for anglers navigating Texas's diverse aquatic ecosystems. Here's a detailed breakdown of the coastal boundaries and freshwater-coastal transition zones:

Saltwater Boundary Description

All public waters situated east and south of the delineated boundary are classified as saltwater:

  • Commencing at the International Toll Bridge in Brownsville, the boundary runs northward along U.S. Hwy. 77 to the intersection of Paredes Lines Road (FM Road 1847) in Brownsville.
  • From there, it extends northward along FM Road 1847 to the junction of FM Road 106 east of Rio Hondo.
  • Progressing westward along FM Road 106, it reaches the junction of FM Road 508 in Rio Hondo.
  • Continuing northward along FM Road 508, it intersects with FM Road 1420.
  • Further northward travel along FM Road 1420 leads to the junction of State Hwy. 186 east of Raymondville.
  • The boundary then follows westward along State Hwy. 186 to the junction of U.S. Hwy. 77 near Raymondville.
  • Proceeding northward along U.S. Hwy. 77, it reaches the junction of the Aransas River south of Woodsboro.
  • From there, it heads eastward along the southern shore of the Aransas River to the junction of the Aransas River Road at the Bonnie View boat ramp.
  • Following the Aransas River Road northward, it arrives at the junction of FM Road 2678, leading to the junction of FM Road 774 in Refugio.
  • Eastward progression along FM Road 774 continues to the junction of State Hwy. 35 south of Tivoli.
  • The boundary then travels northward along State Hwy. 35 to the junction of State Hwy. 185 between Bloomington and Seadrift.
  • From this point, it shifts northwestward along State Hwy. 185 to the junction of FM Road 616 in Bloomington.
  • Continuing northeastward along FM Road 616, it intersects with State Hwy. 35 east of Blessing.
  • Southward travel resumes along State Hwy. 35 until reaching the junction of FM Road 521 north of Palacios.
  • A northeastward trajectory along FM Road 521 leads to the junction of State Hwy. 36 south of Brazoria.
  • The boundary then heads southward along State Hwy. 36 to the junction of FM Road 2004.
  • Turning northward along FM Road 2004, it proceeds to the junction of Interstate Hwy. 45 between Dickinson and La Marque.
  • A northwestward route along Interstate Hwy. 45 leads to the junction of Interstate Hwy. 610 in Houston.
  • The boundary then follows east and northward along Interstate Hwy. 610 to the junction of Interstate Hwy. 10 in Houston.
  • Continuing eastward along Interstate Hwy. 10, it reaches the junction of State Hwy. 73 in Winnie.
  • Following State Hwy. 73 eastward, it arrives at the junction of U.S. Hwy. 287 in Port Arthur.
  • Northwestward travel along U.S. Hwy. 287 continues to the junction of Interstate Hwy. 10 in Beaumont.
  • Finally, the boundary progresses eastward along Interstate Hwy. 10 until reaching the Louisiana State Line.

Texas Fishing Boundaries & Waters

Freshwater-Coastal Boundary

Certain designated public waters are excluded from the saltwater classification:

  • Spindletop Bayou inland from the concrete dam at Russels Landing on Spindletop Bayou in Jefferson County.
  • The area north of the dam on Lake Anahuac in Chambers County.
  • Taylor Bayou and Big Hill Bayou inland from the saltwater locks on Taylor Bayou in Jefferson County.
  • Galveston County Reservoir on State Hwy. 146 and Galveston State Park Ponds #1 through #7 in Galveston County.
  • Lakeview City Park Lake, West Guth Park Pond, and Waldron Park Pond in Nueces County.
  • Lake Burke-Crenshaw and Lake Nassau in Harris County.
  • Fort Brown Resaca, Resaca de la Guerra, Resaca de la Palma, Resaca de los Cuates, Resaca de los Fresnos, Resaca Rancho Viejo, and Town Resaca in Cameron County.
  • Little Chocolate Bayou Park Ponds #1 and #2 in Port Lavaca in Calhoun County.

Fishing Requirements for Federal, State, and Border Waters

Navigating the diverse fishing regulations across federal, state, and border waters can be complex. Here's a comprehensive overview of the requirements for each:

Federal Waters and State Tidal Waters

Recreational anglers venturing into federal waters or the tidal waters of Texas must possess the following:

  • A valid Texas fishing license
  • A saltwater endorsement

This is necessary for:

  • Possessing any fish caught in federal waters while in state water
  • Holding fish on a vessel in the tidal waters of Texas

Border Waters

Texas-Arkansas Border

  • In Arkansas waters of the Red River, anglers must adhere to Arkansas state requirements.

Texas-Oklahoma Border

  • In Oklahoma waters of the Red River, anglers must comply with Oklahoma state requirements.
  • Fishing in Texas or Oklahoma waters on Lake Texoma requires the appropriate license from either state, unless possessing a Lake Texoma fishing license.
  • Fishing from the Texas bank between Denison Dam and Shawnee Creek requires a valid Texas fishing license. Oklahoma residents aged 65 or older are exempt.
  • The upstream boundary of Lake Texoma is Sycamore Creek at Latitude 33°53.663’, Longitude -96°59.009’.

Texas-Louisiana Border

  • Residents of Texas or Louisiana with proper licensing (or exemptions based on age) can fish in lakes and rivers forming a common boundary between the two states, inland from Sabine Pass.
  • Fish caught in Texas must comply with Texas bag and length limits.

Texas-Mexico Border

  • Border states include Tamaulipas, Nuevo León, Coahuila, and Chihuahua.
  • Anglers fishing in Mexican waters must possess a recreational fishing license or Permiso de Pesca Deportiva managed by CONAPESCA.
  • Permits can be obtained for single-day, weekly, monthly, or yearly durations.

Fishing Regulations in Federal Waters

When fishing beyond 9 nautical miles off the Texas coast, anglers enter federal waters, which have distinct rules and regulations. Here's what you need to know:

Federal Waters Regulations Overview

  • Anglers fishing beyond 9 nautical miles offshore are subject to federal rules, which may differ from state regulations.
  • For example, federal regulations mandate the use of non-stainless circle hooks when targeting reef fish.
  • To possess fish caught in federal waters in Texas, recreational anglers must hold a valid Texas fishing license and saltwater endorsement.
  • The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) has the authority to open and close the red snapper fishery in federal waters.
  • While fishing, anglers are limited to possessing a maximum of 4 red snapper.
  • Stay informed about red snapper season dates by checking the latest information.
  • Detailed federal commercial and recreational fishing rules are accessible on the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council website.

Applicability of Limits and Restrictions

  • The limits and restrictions outlined in this guide pertain to aquatic life caught in Texas public waters up to 9 nautical miles in the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Additionally, they apply to aquatic life caught between 9 and 200 nautical miles in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and subsequently brought into state waters or landed in Texas.
  • Federal law governs species managed under a Federal Fishery Management Plan within this 9 to 200 nautical mile range.
  • Refer to regulations regarding the Importation of Wildlife Resources for further details.

Offshore Artificial Reefs

  • Fishing on state-sponsored offshore artificial reefs is subject to the same regulations as other offshore fishing locations.

Compliance with Federal Laws

  • It is illegal to possess aquatic life in Texas waters if it was unlawfully obtained in federal waters.
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Disclaimer:

The legal advice provided on Wild Advisor Pro is intended as a summary of the hunting, camping, hiking, and fishing laws and regulations and does not constitute legal language or professional advice. We make every effort to ensure the information is accurate and up to date, but it should not be relied upon as legal authority. For the most current and comprehensive explanation of the laws and regulations, please consult the official government websites or a qualified legal professional. Wild Advisor Pro is not responsible for any misunderstandings or misinterpretations of the information presented and shall not be held liable for any losses, damages, or legal disputes arising from the use of this summary information. Always check with the appropriate governmental authorities for the latest information regarding outdoor regulations and compliance.