2017-09-01 / Fishing & Boating

Get a license, go fishing

Visitors should make sure they’re keeping within the law while fishing on excursions out of Port Aransas.

New fishing and hunting licenses are required each year by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Annual such licenses (except for the year-to-date fishing license) expire every Aug. 31.

Licenses may be purchased at Port Aransas locations, including charter-fishing agencies, convenience stores and the Family Center IGA. Licenses also may be purchased online through the TPWD website (http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/) or by calling (800) 895-4248. A $5 convenience fee is charged for either option, and a major credit card is required.

Call center hours for license sales are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. The online transaction system is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

A license confirmation number is issued at the time of purchase for online and phone orders, and the physical license is mailed separately. Confirmation numbers will verify that a license has been purchased, which is sufficient for dove hunting, but will not allow hunters to take fish or wildlife that require a tag.

A one-day fishing license costs $11 for residents and $16 for non-residents. One-day licenses don’t have to be purchased on the date of intended use. They can be bought ahead of time but would be good only for the date specified on the license.

Anglers may purchase as many one-day licenses as they wish. No additional freshwater or saltwater stamp endorsements are required with the one-day licenses. One Bonus Red Drum Tag will be available for free with the purchase of the first one-day license.

Also available is the senior resident hunting license and the youth hunting license, each of which may be purchased for a $7 fee. Both resident and nonresident youths under 17 qualify for the youth hunting license.

Senior Resident Fishing License Packages allow resident senior citizens to fish in freshwater for $12, saltwater for $17 or any Texas public waters for $22.The TPWD website at www.tpwd.state.tx.us/ publications/annual/general/fish_ licenses/ provides a definition of “senior citizen” and other details on getting fishing licenses.

The Special Resident Fishing License, which costs $7, is available only to individuals who are legally blind. Freshwater stamp and saltwater stamp requirements are waived.

In addition to a hunting license, all wing shooters need to purchase a game bird stamp and receive Harvest Information Program (HIP) certification. Duck hunters need to purchase a Federal Duck Stamp and receive HIP certification, which will be printed on the license at the time of sale only after the purchaser answers a few brief migratory bird questions. Lifetime license holders must also be HIP-certified and purchase the Federal Duck Stamp to hunt migratory birds. All other state stamp endorsements are included with a lifetime license.

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