Calendar


Through Feb. 23 - Texas quail season.


Feb. 22 - 21st Annual Denison Youth Trout Derby at Waterloo Lake Park Pond.


Feb. 23 - TPWD rainbow trout stocking at Denison’s Waterloo Lake Park Pond.


Feb. 25 - ODWC’s fourth annual Rack Madness event in OKC. For info, visit www.wildlifedepartment.com.


March 1 - TPWD rainbow trout stocking at Sherman’s Pebblebrook Community Park Pond.


March 3 - Red River Fly Fishers meeting (fly tying at 6 p.m., meeting at 7 p.m.) at the Baylor Scott & White Surgical Hospital in Sherman. For information, visit rrff.org.


March 6 - Texoma Ducks Unlimited’s Annual Couple’s Dinner at Sherman’s Municipal Ballroom. For information, call Kris Spiegel at (903) 820-8882 or visit www.ducks.org.


March 6-8 - 50th Bassmaster Classic on Alabama’s Lake Guntersville.


March 14 - TRWD Fly Fest in Fort Worth. For information, visit https://trwdflyfest.com.


March 21-22 - Fourth annual Texas Fly Fishing & Brew Festival in Plano. For information, visit www.txflyfishingfestival.org .


March 21-May 3 - Texas South Zone Rio Grande spring turkey season.


April 4-May 17 - Texas North Zone Rio Grande spring turkey season.


April 6-May 6 - Oklahoma spring turkey season.


April 20-May 6 - Oklahoma spring turkey season for eight southeastern counties including Atoka and Choctaw counties.


April 22-May 14 - Texas Eastern Turkey spring season including Grayson, Fannin, and Lamar counties.


Notes


According to ODWC, Justin Hamlin caught the Oklahoma fish of a lifetime last Friday while fishing on a guided trip at Keystone Lake. The Tulsa firefighter caught a paddlefish estimated at 157-pounds, a fish that would have eclipsed the current world record by more than an estimated 10 pounds along with toppling the Sooner State’s current paddlefish record of just more than 132-pounds. However, Oklahoma fishing regulations in place for more than a decade require all paddlefish snagged on Mondays and Fridays to be released immediately to help protect the fish species from overharvest. Because of that state law, the giant paddlefish was not eligible to be recorded as a state and world record and was released…Not every news release entry into TPWD’s “Game Warden Notes” involves someone being caught breaking the law. Sometimes, there’s also a story that brings a smile. One such example is this recent story: “After a Falls County Sheriff’s Deputy was killed in the line of duty in October 2019, a Falls County game warden began planning a hunting trip to help give members of the Sheriff’s Office an outlet to get a break from the tragic event. The warden reached out to a Lampasas County game warden to assist with setting up the hunt. The Lampasas County game warden reached out to local landowners and businesses and found a venue and accommodations for the hunt. In late January, Falls County deputies, the father of the fallen deputy and the Fall County game warden traveled to a ranch in Lampasas for the hunt. A local deer processing business also donated rib eye steaks for all the guests. Nine deer were taken during the successful hunt”…The February big bass season continues to heat up across Texas with word coming this week of a 15-pound largemouth being caught at Sam Rayburn Reservoir and a 14-pound bass being caught at Lake Conroe…The Major League Fishing Bass Pro Tour’s Stage Two event kicks off today in Florida. The Feb. 21-26 derby will be contested on famed Lake Okeechobee to the south of Orlando. The BPT’s Stage Three derby visits East Texas and it’s renowned Lake Fork lunker factory next month for a March 13-18 event…The 2020 FLW Pro Circuit is visiting Florida ‘s Harris Chain of Lakes this weekend for a Feb. 20-23 derby. With the visit, all three of bass fishing’s professional circuits will have visited the Sunshine State over the last few weeks. Earlier this month, the Bassmaster Elite Series paid a visit to the famous St. John’s River near Jacksonville. This weekend, in addition to the FLW stop to the north of Orlando, the Major League Fishing Bass Pro Tour anglers are visiting Lake Okeechobee…


Hunting Report


The 2019-20 quail hunting season comes to an end this weekend for Texas bird hunters. The season concludes on Sunday, Feb. 23…As the March 1 entry deadline approaches for the 2019-20 Texas Big Game Awards program, the TBGA website is reporting a Grayson County non-typical buck from last fall that has a gross score of nearly 200-inches. No word yet on whether that whitetail will net above the 195-inch mark required for entry into the Boone and Crockett Club record book…


Fishing Reports


At Lake Texoma, water is stained; water temps are 49-52 degrees; and the lake is 0.60’ high. TPWD reports that striped bass are fair for anglers using live bait and shad fished near large schools sitting on main lake ledges. Largemouth bass are good for anglers fishing soft plastics and crankbaits. Crappie are fair on minnows and jigs fished by boathouses, over submerged vegetation, and near timber. Catfish are fair on cut bait and minnows fished in the river channel near structure…ODWC reports that the biggest concentration of striped bass is located on the west end of Texoma right now as the fish stage for their springtime spawning run. The agency says that anglers should be ready to use different methods of fishing to produce a limit of stripers which includes the use of live bait, dead sticking, and using Sassy Shad…At Lake Ray Roberts, water is stained; water temps are 51-52 degrees; and the lake is 1.28’ high. TPWD reports that largemouth bass remain fair on plastic worms and buzzbaits as anglers seek warmer water in creeks and coves. White bass are fair in 28-38’ of water on slabs and minnows. Crappie are slow on jigs and minnows…At Lake Fork, water is stained; water temps are 51-52 degrees; and the lake is 0.05’ low. TPWD reports that largemouth bass are fair on crankbaits and chatterbaits fished in warmer water in the creeks. Pre-spawn bass activity is picking up near the creeks and around brush situated near the shoreline. Crappie are good on jigs and minnows fished around structure in 20-30’ of water…At Oklahoma’s Sardis Lake, ODWC reports an above normal lake elevation along with a water temperature of 46 degrees. Largemouth and spotted bass are reported as good on jerkbaits, crankbaits, jigs, soft plastic baits and spinnerbaits fished around brushy structure, creek channels, points, rocks, shorelines and standing timber…


Tip of the Week


It’s a good time to fish a suspending jerkbait or a medium running crankbait for pre-spawn largemouth bass. Lures that have colors resembling threadfin shad, gizzard shad, and crawfish are good choices as the rest of February runs its course. Fish the jerkbaits in stretches of clearer water, especially near main lake points, submerged boulders just offshore and along break lines in 8-12’ of water. Fish the crankbaits near rocks, vegetation, timber and stained water in similar depth ranges.