Spring rains benefit Matagorda Bay

REPORT FROM THE FIELD

The rain we got down on the coast in April was a blessing.  It was too late for the oysters for this season but if the water temperature was high enough in the bays, it should have helped the oyster spawn.

It definitely helped the shrimp in the estuaries; we now have a crop that looks better than in maybe the last ten years.  Of course this still remains to be seen, the gulf season doesn’t open until July 15, but still what’s been caught in the bays has looked very encouraging.  A steady flow of fresh water year round is what the bays have needed for quite a while.

Buddy Treybig, Commercial Fisherman, Matagorda Texas

 

Colorado River at “Critical” flow standard; Bastrop Wells

The drought is not over in the Colorado River basin and the environmental flow standard for the river at Bastrop is in “critical” stage.  At this stage the LCRA is required to maintain a minimum flow of 120 cubic feet per second at the Bastrop Gage.   Because the rice farmers are not getting water this summer, the flow at Bastrop can be expected to drop to this critical level as soon as the rains stop.  The only supplement will be the Garwood irrigation water right.

You can watch the Bastrop Gage at this link.

I see there are issues with the City of Bastrop water wells.  Most of these wells are “alluvial” wells, meaning they are in the Colorado River alluvial aquifer and are impacted by the river level.  This is the first time since the Highland Lakes were completed that the rice farmers have not received water and so the river is at a historic low point for this time of year in Bastrop (except for the rainfall we have been getting).   We can expect that the Bastrop water wells will be impacted by the “critical” and historic low flow.