Fishing

Hunting and fishing regulations for the new season

Opening day of dove season in the Central Zone is Sept. 1, the teal season opens on Sept. 10 and the bow season on deer is Oct. 1– Nov. 4. Just in case you want to get in on some alligator hunts, that season is open from Sept. 10-30 here in Southeast Texas. That’s how tight things are getting on the hunting scene. I’m seeing lots of deer feeders being loaded up at sporting goods stores, along with bags of corn and cases of shotgun shells.

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prospects for the 2016-17 hunting season are good to excellent.

The Texas dove season in the Central and North zones opens Sept. 1, and the word from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is that hunters can expect to see plenty of birds and have a lot more days to hunt them. That’s plenty of good news for over 415,000 Texas dove hunters.

We’ll have a 90-day season with 20 more days of opportunity compared with previous years.

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Fishing along the coast kicked into high gear this past weekend, with good numbers of trout, flounder and even king mackerel being caught.

One of the best fishing reports I’ve got is from Sabine Lake guide Jerry Norris. His top catches of trout, along with a few reds, have been around the rigs east of the jetties in 20 to 25 feet of water.

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The Fourth of July holiday weekend always sets the stage for a mega surge in boating here in Southeast Texas and, of course, the lakes and rivers of the Pineywoods. In fact, what makes the right side of Texas such a big draw for so many boaters are the many options. Along the coast we’ve got Sabine Lake, the Sabine jetties, Keith Lake, the surf and East Galveston Bay. In Beaumont, we’ve got the Neches River; in Lumberton, there is Village Creek; on the Texas-Louisiana border, there is the Sabine River. Farther inland is big Sam Rayburn and Toledo Bend.

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For the time being, the recreational red snapper season is closed in federal wat

The recreational red snapper fishing season is closed once again after a grueling nine days – most of which were too rough for many boats to go offshore. But we did get a huge break. Out of the goodness of their heart NOAA Fisheries extended the season an extra two days because of the lack of fishing opportunity we had due to Tropical Storm Colin. They are so nice, and so out of contact with the real world.

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Samurai Showdown

It was an overwhelming success in every capacity as Texas Karate Academy (TKA) held its first Samurai Showdown June 11 as more than 200 competitors from Austin to Baton Rouge filled Wesley Methodist Church in Beaumont.

TKA had 36 students compete, which resulted in 29 first-place awards, nine second-place awards and 15 third-place finishes.

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Photo by Buddy Oaks

Lots of speckled trout, reds and flounder are being caught on Sabine Lake, Keith Lake and Calcasieu on a variety of lures and live baits. The water temperature on Sabine Lake is about 79 degrees.

Some of the best action of the year for both reds and flounder is along the Louisiana shoreline of Sabine Lake. Guide Jerry Norris says he’s catching lots of flounder on Berkley Gulps in pink or white while working the mouths of bayous, and small inlets along the Louisiana shoreline.

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Robert Sloan photo

Just recently, NOAA Fisheries opted to give recreational anglers a nine-day red snapper season that left anglers along the entire Gulf Coast red in the face with frustration.

Based on the annual catch targets and accounting for the red snapper harvest in state waters outside the federal season, the federal season for the private angling component will be nine days, and the federal season for the federally permitted for-hire boats will be 46 days. The commercial red snapper season runs year-round using its privatized catch share system.

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Bruce Butler of Amarillo caught Toyota ShareLunker 565 from Lake Alan Henry on A

It’s been a tough few weeks for fishermen on Sabine Lake in the hunt for reds and trout. The water has been muddy enough to walk on, but the good news is that it’s finally beginning to clear up a little bit.

Guide Colby Denbow with Sabine Lake Lodge has been catching reds and trout on the lower end of the lake. He’s also catching a few flounder in the pass.

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Robert Sloan photos

Last weekend Rayburn Country, just north of Jasper, was at its very finest with plenty of sunshine, morning temperatures in the upper 40s and afternoon highs in the 70s. For many folks, it was a prime opportunity for a round of golf. For others it was a perfect day for bass and crappie fishing on big Sam Rayburn Lake.

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