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Drought Threatens Closure Of Texas Fish Hatchery

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LUBBOCK (AP) – State officials will probably close one of five fish hatcheries in Texas because of low water levels in lakes that feed it.

Hatcheries program director Todd Engeling said Wednesday that would mean fewer fish available to sportsmen this year. A decision on whether to temporarily close Dundee Fish Hatchery west of Wichita Falls will come in the next two weeks.

Dundee’s 97 ponds and 84 acres of water represent 34 percent of Texas’ available capacity for freshwater fish production. The North Texas facility is where striped bass and hybrid striped bass are primarily produced.

Engeling says there will be no short-time impact on the number of those species if operations at Dundee are suspended because production will shift to other hatcheries.

Largemouth bass production would be impacted by the shift.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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