Outdoors notebook: Reward offered in game warden assault incident

Craig Bonds, inland fisheries chief for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, said fish smaller than 13 pounds caught from private waters will not qualify for entry into the new format for Toyota ShareLunkers.

Private waters largemouth bass of 13 pounds or more will be accepted as brood fish if caught by March 31, Bonds said. A private waters brood fish donor will not be eligible for prizes or offspring from the donated fish. The new ShareLunker rules are adapted from the Florida TrophyCatch program, which does recognize private waters fish.

In 2017, a 16-pound, 12-ounce bass was caught from Florida private waters. Without TrophyCatch recognition, that fish may never have been made public. It’s the biggest documented bass caught in Florida since 1986.

Boat, outdoor show is coming to Belton

The 42nd Annual Central Texas Boat and Outdoor Show is Jan. 26-28 at the Bell County Expo Center in Belton. Show promoter Bill Foster said this is the only boat and outdoor show between Dallas and Austin.

Foster said attractions include a kids’ fishing tank, though they’re still looking for a sponsor.

Hours are 4 p.m.-8 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday. Details are online at centraltexasboatshow.com.

Market Hall to host boat expo

According to the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA), overall U.S. powerboat sales are expected to be up 6 percent in 2017. That’s about 260,000 boats valued at $3.7 billion. Texas ranks second only to Florida in boat sales. The DFW Boat Expo is set for Market Hall Feb. 2-11. Details are online at dallasboatexpo.com.

Cold winter may have its advantage

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries officials are hoping this winter’s cold weather will slow giant salvinia, an invasive aquatic plant renown for its fast growth, and taking over waterways from native plant species. That’s what happened after the freeze in 2010. Unfortunately, the same cold that kills giant salvinia also takes a toll on the weevils specially bred to eat the fast-spreading vegetation.

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