Commercial Fishing Regulations Set At TFWC Meeting

Friday, September 20, 2013

The Tennessee Fish and Wildlife Commission approved the state’s 2014-15 commercial fishing proclamations at its September meeting which concluded Friday at the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency’s Region II Ray Bell Building.

Among the regulations concerning commercial fishing, there is now a change of hoop net definition to allow for the use of hoop nets with a mesh size of one inch and larger and not allow the use of wings or leads. Also, there will no longer be a closed season on using hoop nets. In addition, restrict the mesh size on wings and leads to one inch or smaller for fyke nets, trap nets, and pound nets.

The Beech River, which empties into Kentucky Lake, is closed to commercial fishing upstream from the Highway 69 bridge.

Turtle traps are added to the list of gears that will be allowed to be fished in the creeks and embayments on Kentucky Lake in April and May. The season defined for turtle harvests are defined for the months of March through October.

At Reelfoot Lake, there are 14 species of turtles allowed to be harvested.

The final changes to the commercial fishing proclamation came a month earlier than usual at the request of the Commercial Fishing Advisory Committee. The new regulations are effective March 1, 2014. The sport fishing regulations for 2014-15 will be set at the October TFWC meeting.

The Birchwood Community Center in north Hamilton County will host the 2013 sandhill crane permit drawing on Saturday, Oct. 12. A total of 400 permits will be available and there will be a hand-held drawing conducted. Registration begins for the permit drawing at 8 a.m. (EDT). The drawing will begin at approximately 10 a.m. The commission established a limited sandhill crane hunting season for a designated area in East Tennessee at its August meeting.

Any leftover permits will be available at the TWRA’s four regions at a time following the initial drawing. More specific details will follow prior to the drawing.

The 2013 dove hunting season is underway and preliminary reports are good with more than 5,000 Tennessee hunters taking advantage of the public dove field program. It is estimated that more than 18,000 doves were harvested the opening weekend.

A wheelchair blind was recently constructed at the Varner Unit of North Chickamauga Wildlife Management Area. The commission approved an amendment to a proclamation allowing usage for wheelchair-bound hunters only at the site on the days of Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. The site would be available same as the statewide seasons for deer (archery), turkey, and waterfowl.

The commission approved an emergency rule regarding the operation of vessels on the Cumberland River (CRM mile 243) near the Gallatin Steam Plant. The Tennessee Valley Authority is undergoing construction to comply with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s new Mercury and Air Toxic regulation and TVA’s environmental agreements with the EPA and others.

The rule is put in place to insure the safety of boaters and their equipment. The emergency rule excludes boats from entering the work zone. Construction is set begin in November and conclude by the spring of 2016.

The commission will next meet on Oct. 17-18 (Thursday-Friday) in Kingsport. Committee meetings will begin at 1 p.m. on Thursday while the formal commission meeting starts at 9 a.m. on Friday.


Fur Harvesters Sale Is March 4 In Crossville

Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) will be on hand to provide fur harvesters with bobcat and otter tags at the annual Fur Harvesters Association sale on  March 4 , at the Cumberland County Fair Complex in Crossville. Check in starts at  8:00 a.m. Central Standard Time and the sale will begin  9:30 a.m.  The event will continue until all sales are ... (click for more)

Registration Opens March 1 For 67th Annual Wildflower Pilgrimage

Registration for the 67th annual Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage   opens at  8 a.m.   Wednesday, March 1 . Each year, more than 700 people from more than 35 states and beyond descend on the Great Smoky Mountains as the spring flora tints the forest with flowers and vibrant spring migratory birds return to their summer home. This year, the pilgrimage ... (click for more)

Stubbs Arrested In Carjacking At Lakesite McDonald's

The Sheriff's Office has arrested Jonathan Casey Stubbs in connection with a Feb. 13 carjacking at the parking lot of the McDonald's in Lakesite. Stubbs, 28, who gave his address as Ringgold, is charged with carjacking, aggravated robbery, aggravated kidnapping, resisting arrest, unlawfully carrying a weapon and three counts of violating probation on prior aggravated burglary ... (click for more)

East Ridge Makes Needy Child Fund 501(C)(3); Considers Using Former Fire Hall For High School Field House; Approves New Sign Ordinance

East Ridge has operated a fund for decades, which helps the less fortunate residents of the city. Often, those working with The Needy Child Fund hear of people that need help through the schools or neighbors. The fund helps provide food, coats and clothing to families, especially around Christmas when it also gives gifts to children that are delivered by the police and fire departments. ... (click for more)

CVB Should Share Financials With The Home Folks

The recent debate over the Convention and Visitor's Bureau's funding and budget has gotten ugly. A Hamilton County commissioner has asked questions and made comments about the CVB. The director of the CVB has organized a campaign to dismiss the commissioner's questions and comments. The children on the playground are choosing sides and nothing useful seems to be happening. It's ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Haggling Must Stop

Far be it for me to suggest the Hamilton County Commission and the School Board need to spend more time at recess but it was obvious this week the two groups need to work at being better friends. We have nine county commissioners and just as many corresponding school board members to work together for the betterment of one entity – Hamilton County. Everybody who thinks that is happening ... (click for more)