Arroyo Colorado

April 25, 2014

Hello Arroyo Partners:

After a nice wet winter that seemed to stretch all the way through April, the RGV reached a temperature of 95 degrees yesterday.  It is almost like we skipped spring and our locked into our summer weather pattern.  The weather prognosticators are predicting a tame Hurricane season this year, with only 9 named storms.  El Nino is in effect.

I want to remind everyone that the ACWP will be holding three of their Work Group meetings in May.

The Agriculture Issues Workgroup meeting will be held on May 22, from 9-11 am at the Texas A&M Agrilife Research and Extension Center Conference room located at 2401 E. Hwy 83 in Weslaco.

The Arroyo Colorado Habitat Workgroup meeting will be held on May 22, from 2-4 pm at the Estero Llano Grande World Birding Center located at 3301 S. FM 1015.  

The Arroyo Colorado Watershed Partnership will be hosting an Arroyo Colorado Steering Committee meeting on May 22, from 5-7 pm.  Food and refreshments will be served from 4:30-5:00 pm.  The meeting will be held at The Estero Llano Grande World Birding Center located at 3301 S. FM 1015. 

The LRGV-TPDES Storm Water Task Force hosted their 16th Annual Lower Rio Grande Valley Storm Water Runoff Management and Planning Conference April 8-11 at the Pearl South Padre Resort, SPI, TX.  The conference was a great success and very well attended.  The technical session were very informative with topics including current issues related to TPDES storm water regulations, the new TCEQ MS4 TPDES permit, watershed protection plans, floodplain management, low impact development, non-point source pollution, funding, water research topics, and other water quality topics.

The conference culminated in the Second Annual LRGV-TPDES Stormwater Task Force Fishing Tournament to benefit the Arroyo Colorado Conservancy on April 12.  The Stormwater Task Force founded the fishing tournament last year as a way to raise awareness about the impairments and the various issues facing the Arroyo Colorado.  They also thought it would be a great way for stormwater professionals, engineers, city officials etc., to network and get to know one another while enjoying some friendly competition.  We had some really nice fish weigh in last year to take the top prizes. This year the tournament was no different with some really solid fish being brought into the weigh in. Tournament Winners

L to R: Mike Cantu – Arroyo Colorado Crusaders (2nd Place Red), Tony Barco– Team LMV (3rd Place Red), Jaime Flores– Arroyo Colorado Watershed Coordinator (Back Row), Ponciano Longoria– Team MHI (1st Place Trout), Juan Ruiz–Border Bandits (1st Place Red), Robert Tamez– Team MHI (2nd Place Trout), Ruben James De Jesus– Team MHI (3rd Place Trout)

The official standings are listed below:

The winners in the Redfish division are;

The winners in the Speckled Trout division are;

Everyone that attended had a great time and we hope we can do it again next year.  We want to thank TAMUK, the LRGV-TPDES Stormwater Task Force, the fishing tournament committee and everyone that participated in the tournament. 

The morning of the tournament, there were overcast skies and a slight chill in the air when we left the dock at 6:30 am.  There was a stiff 12-15mph, S-SW wind coming off of the Gulf as we headed north to an area referred to as “the drum boat” looking for some reds.  Once we reached our destination, we decided to do some drift fishing with some live mullet.  On my second cast, I felt a tap on my line and after a couple of seconds, felt the fish pick up my bait.  I waited and nothing happened so I thought the fish had let go.  My buddy was watching me and asked me what had happened and I said, “a fish picked up my bait but let it go”.  He looked at me and said, “I don’t know dude, there is a lot of slack in your line, you better check it out”.  Right at that very moment, I reeled in the slack on my line, felt the weight of the fish and set the hook; Fish On!  The fish made a line peeling run to my left as I held on praying that line would hold! He circled the boat twice before I was able to make any ground reeling him in.  I got the fish to within 12-15 feet from the boat and got a good look at it.  It was a solid redfish and it was angry.  Once the fish saw the boat, it made another run, peeling off line like crazy.  It circled the boat another 2 times before beginning to tire.  A good 15-20 minutes had already gone by until I got the fish close enough to try and net it.  Once the fish saw the net, it tried to make a run to our drift anchor to try and break the line but the line held and I was able to turn him back around and gently guide it into net.  It was a thick, 32”, 14lb oversize Red.  It was not eligible for the tournament but I knew it make for some fine dining so I tagged it and put it in the ice chest.  My forearms and hands were trembling and I was worn out! I had to sit down for a couple of minutes just to catch my breath.  About ten minutes later, Mike hooked into a real nice redfish.  He fought it for about ten minutes and landed it fairly easily.  It was 27 ¼” and had some weight to it.  We had a good, solid fish to enter into the tournament.  We all gave each other high fives and got back to fishing.  About that time, the sun broke the horizon and we watched as the giant, flaming orb rose over the sand dunes.  I looked down at my watch and it was 7:45am.  I thought to myself, this is going to be a great day!

Jaime Flores, P.G.