Texas, get ready for an awesome fishing experience as catfish populations are getting a boost with help from the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department (TPWD). The TPWD will be re-stocking neighborhood fishing lakes all across Texas.

Beginning on April 12, 2024, the TPWD will resume stocking thousands of catfish at 18 neighborhood fishing lakes, including San Angelo. There are five lakes in Dallas-Fort Worth, four in the Houston area, two in Austin and San Antonio, and one each in Amarillo, College Station, Waco, and Wichita Falls.

Photo by: TPWD
Photo by: TPWD

The program allows families and friends to participate in catfish fishing properly. While the stocking does not apply to every city in Texas, certain lakes will be stocked regularly from April through November of 2024.

Anglers can keep up to five catfish per day. Some parks offer cleaning tables to make it easy for families to clean their catch. Children under 17 fish for free. However, adults must all have a fishing license. Fishing licenses can be purchased for as little as $11 for “one-day, all-water” access.

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To find stocked lakes, or sign up for email updates, visit www.neighborhoodfishing.org. Keep in mind that the TPWD doesn’t stock catfish in all area lakes on a “regular basis.” Instead, fishing holes are monitored to ensure that city, county, and area lakes all have a good healthy stock of catfish.

If you want to catch more catfish faster, here are some baits I've used that help:

  1. Raw chicken livers
  2. Raw shrimp
  3. Cut-up hotdog pieces
  4. Raw smokey bacon slice pieces
  5. Nightcrawler worms (found in flower and vegetable gardens)

Remember, take your fishing license. Happy fishing! Source: Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

Photo by: Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
Photo by: Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

LOOK: Here are the best lake towns to live in

Many of the included towns jump out at the casual observer as popular summer-rental spots--the Ozarks' Branson, Missouri, or Arizona's Lake Havasu--it might surprise you to dive deeper into some quality-of-life offerings beyond the beach and vacation homes. You'll likely pick up some knowledge from a wide range of Americana: one of the last remaining 1950s-style drive-ins in the Midwest; a Florida town that started as a Civil War veteran retirement area; an island boasting some of the country's top public schools and wealth-earners right in the middle of a lake between Seattle and Bellevue; and even a California town containing much more than Johnny Cash's prison blues.

Gallery Credit: Peter Richman