Robert Sloan Outdoors: Man throws STAR tagged red on shoreline, wins big time

Robert Sloan Outdoors: Man throws STAR tagged red on shoreline, wins big time

Another lucky angler has caught one of the tagged reds released by the CCA/STAR tournament. At first he didn’t even know the fish was tagged and worth a truck, boat, motor and trailer. But when he took a closer look at the red that had been casually tossed up on the bank, Mike Capell soon realized the value of catch.

Tuesday evening, July 1, started like most for the Corpus Christi resident. Capell grabbed a fishing pole and headed to his favorite spot at Oso Bay on the lower Texas coast.

“After fishing about an hour and a half, Capell finally got a bite,” says Gina Rice, with CCA/STAR. “It was a redfish. Capell threw the red up on the bank and continued fishing. He caught two trout and decided to call it a night. It wasn’t until Capell went to clean the fish later that evening that he noticed a long skinny thing on the one redfish he caught. Capell yelled to his wife to bring him a magnifying glass.”

She read off the tag info to him, and that’s when he realized it was tagged redfish, TA638.

Capell is the third official winner of the 2014 CCA Texas STAR Tournament, Redfish Division. The catch is worth a 2014 Ford truck, Haynie 23-foot Big Foot boat, Mercury 150 motor and Coastline trailer.

“So far 11 tagged redfish have been caught, but only three confirmed as winners at this time,” says Rice. “That means there are still over 60 tagged redfish still out there swimming around. Trophy-sized prizes can be claimed by STAR anglers who bring in the first 10 tagged redfish. Last year 11 tagged redfish were caught, but only six anglers claimed prizes. The others, unfortunately, were not registered for the CCA Texas STAR.

Visit www.ccamembership.org to get signed up today. For more information, including a list of weigh-in stations, instant-entry registration locations in your area and weekly leader board updates, go to www.startournament.org. The tournament will end on Labor Day, Sept. 1 at 5 p.m.

New hunting, fishing licenses are now on sale

New licenses for the 2014-15 hunting and fishing seasons are now available. The current year Texas hunting and fishing licenses (except year-to-date fishing licenses) will expire Aug. 31.

“Every year, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department issues about 2.5 million hunting and fishing licenses through the agency’s 28 field offices, more than 50 state parks and at over 1,700 retailers across the state,” says Steve Lightfoot with TPWD.

Licenses may also be purchased online through the TPWD website at www.tpwd.state.tx.us/buy or by phone at (800) 895-4248. Call center hours are Monday through Friday, 8 p.m. to 5 p.m. and there is a required $5 convenience fee for each phone or online transaction.

“The online transaction system is available 24/7,” says Lightfoot. “For online and phone orders, a physical license will be mailed within three business days. During that time period, a transaction receipt will be provided via e-mail that will be sufficient proof of hunting license that can be used for dove hunting, though it will not be allowed for the take of fish or wildlife that require a tag.”

Hunting and fishing regulations for the new season can be found in the 2014-2015 Outdoor Annual, available at license retailers, and online at www.txoutdoorannual.com. Starting this fall, it’ll be easier than ever for hunters and anglers to take the Outdoor Annual with them in the field or on the water via a new app available by the end of August for free download on iPhone and Android platforms.

Mandatory hunter education certification

In addition to a hunting license, anyone born after Sept. 1, 1971, must successfully complete a hunter education training course or purchase a one-time deferral good for one license year in order to hunt legally in Texas. The certification is valid for life and is honored in all other states and provinces.

Hunters who need hunter education certification now have expanded options including a streamlined, one-day basic course and an option for anyone 17 years of age or older to take the hunting safety training completely online. A combination online home study and 4 to 5 hour skills field day course is also offered. More information on hunter education certification is available online at www.tpwd.state.tx.us/outdoor-learning/hunter-education.

Bird hunting requirements

A Migratory Game Bird endorsement and Harvest Information Program (HIP) certification are also required to hunt doves or teal in September. HIP certification involves a brief survey of the previous year’s migratory bird hunting success and is conducted at the time a license is purchased. Duck hunters also need to purchase a Federal Duck Stamp.

There are other mandatory endorsements to consider at the time of license purchase. An Upland Game Bird Stamp ($7) is required to hunt all non-migratory game birds, including turkey, quail, pheasant and chachalaca.

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