Growing Redfish

New Red Drum Broodstock Arrive at TPWD Hatchery

Fresh from the Gulf, adult red drum have arrived at our Corpus Christi hatchery to breed more redfish. These ‘broodstock’ will be released back into the wild and their spawn will be stocked into Texas bays in coming months.

Many old salts will remember in the late 1970s and early 1980s when red drum all but disappeared from our bays. Management measures were adopted in the late 1980s which included banning commercial netting, implementation of bag and size limits and the designation of red drum as a game fish. 

In addition to implementing these traditional management measures, Coastal Fisheries began a stocking program to enhance the wild population of red drum. The first red drum fingerings were stocked in 1983 and about 30 million are stocked in Texas bays each year. While stocking red drum to enhance the wild population had not been done before, it has proven to be a successful and important part of our management program. 

Thanks to these management measures and research into the mysteries of red drum life history, the fishery has recovered to arguably one of the best in the nation, and represents one of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department – Coastal Fisheries' greatest success stories.

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