SAN ANTONIO – The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department will be stocking waterbodies across the state with bass between May and July.
Pure Florida strain largemouth bass are expected to be stocked in 52 waterbodies, a spokesperson for TPWD told KSAT.
“We are excited to reach the goal of converting our Florida strain largemouth bass hatchery broodfish to all be offspring of Legacy-class fish,” Director of Inland Fisheries Craig Bonds said. “Since the ShareLunker program’s inception, we’ve stocked offspring from successful spawns of donated fish, but fully incorporating a portion of those offspring into our hatchery broodfish lines dramatically increases the number of ShareLunker descendants being stocked throughout Texas waters.”
TPWD spokesperson Kirk McDonnell told KSAT via email that the hatcheries the bass are coming from are working hard to meet the full request to stock all 52 locations.
Lone Star Bass Stocking List by on Scribd
“TPWD may or may not be able to get to every lake depending on the number of fingerlings produced,” McDonnell said. “So far, all indications are that the spawning process is going very well and TPWD is hopeful to stock the majority and possibly the entire list of lakes to meet the full request of biologists.”
According to a press release, TPWD is able to stock six to eight million fingerling bass across the state each year.
This is the first year TPWD Inland Fisheries is able to stock ShareLunker descendants statewide.
“This is a potential game-changer in elevating largemouth bass fisheries management to the next level,” Bonds said.
The ShareLunker program has allowed the state record for largemouth bass to increase from approximately 13.5 pounds to 18.18 pounds, the press release states.
The following details about the ShareLunker program are directly from TPWD:
The year-round Toyota ShareLunker Program offers four levels of participation for catching bass over eight pounds, or 24 inches, in Texas. ShareLunker entry classes include the Lunker Class (8lb+), Elite Class (10lb+), and Legend Class (13lb+). During the first three months of the season (Jan. 1 through March 31), anglers who reel in a 13+ pound bass can loan it to TPWD for the ShareLunker selective breeding and stocking program. The continued donation of 13-plus pound fish by anglers will be critical to the ongoing maintenance and replacement of future broodfish.
Once a lunker is reeled in, anglers need to enter the catch data on the Toyota ShareLunker mobile app – available for free from the Apple App Store and Google Play – or on the Toyota ShareLunker online app at TexasSharelunker.com. In addition to providing basic catch information, anglers can also provide a DNA scale sample from their lunker bass to TPWD researchers for genetic analysis.