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RULE §58.40Oyster Transplant Permits

(a) Oysters for transplanting to a private oyster lease may be taken only under a permit issued by the department.

(b) Oyster Transplant Application.

  (1) The application for a transplant permit must include the following information:

    (A) oyster lease number;

    (B) name and address of the lease holder and/or that of his designated agent;

    (C) name, if documented, and/or registration number of all boats to be used in transplanting operations;

    (D) as prescribed in Parks and Wildlife Code, §76.031, the quantity of unculled oysters requested, and a description of areas from which the oysters are requested to be taken; and

    (E) beginning and ending dates of transplant operations.

  (2) Written applications for transplant permits must be received by the department two business days prior to the beginning of transplanting operations.

  (3) Written applications for transplant permit amendments must be received by the department at least two business days prior to the desired effective date of the amendment.

  (4) No more than four transplant permits for a lease will be issued during a one month period.

  (5) No transplant permit will be issued for an oyster lease while a harvest permit for the same lease is in effect.

  (6) A valid transplant permit must be on the vessel during any transplanting activities.

  (7) A transplant permit will not be issued to any leaseholder who has not paid any rental, transfer, sale, renewal or late penalty fees that are owed to the department.

  (8) The number of boats that may be allocated to a lease for transplanting oysters shall be based on:

    (A) the total number of boats that the department determines may be used to transplant oysters during that specific season, and

    (B) the total number of active leases during that season.

  (9) Boat allocations may be transferred between leases so long as those transfers occur before Private Oyster Transplant Permits are issued for those specific leases and must be identified and included on the transplant permit request.

(c) Oyster Transplant Season and Times.

  (1) The department shall establish the oyster transplant season giving consideration to information furnished to the department by leaseholders.

  (2) All transplanting operations shall begin after sunrise and shall be completed before sunset each day.

  (3) No transplanting will be permitted on Saturdays, Sundays, major holidays, or on the same days that harvest operations are permitted.

(d) Transplant Restrictions.

  (1) Transplanting of oysters is subject to the conditions and provisions described in the permit issued by the department.

  (2) Oysters taken for the purposes of transplanting to a private oyster lease may be taken only from areas designated by the department as prescribed in Parks and Wildlife Code, §76.033.

  (3) Oysters may not normally be taken for the purpose of transplanting from the following areas:

    (A) public oyster reefs in areas approved for oyster harvest and which have been subjected to any degree of oyster fishing in recent years;

    (B) near-shore reefs around public or private fishing piers where a conflict of interest has arisen or might arise;

    (C) reefs or areas in which the incidence of diseases, parasites, and/or predators have been judged potentially dangerous to the public reef fishery if the oysters are transplanted to other areas; or

    (D) areas declared to be unsuitable for transplanting by the Texas Department of State Health Services because of the presence of persistent chemicals or diseases that might be dangerous to public health.

  (4) All oysters obtained under a transplant permit must be deposited upon the lease identified in the permit.

  (5) The cargo of oysters transplanted will consist of unculled oysters and shell, unless specified otherwise.

  (6) The permit may require oysters to be culled on the reef from which they are taken if the department determines that the reef area may be protected or improved by such action.

  (7) The permit holder may cull the cargo of oysters on his oyster lease.

  (8) Oysters may be transplanted only to a private oyster lease which is properly marked at all corners.

  (9) No oysters may be transplanted to a lease adjacent to or adjoining a lease approved for harvest.

(e) Reporting Requirement. Weekly transplant reports must be prepared by the permittee and submitted to the department each Monday following the week of transplant.

Source Note: The provisions of this §58.40 adopted to be effective October 3, 1996, 21 TexReg 9172; amended to be effective February 28, 2002, 27 TexReg 1330; amended to be effective June 10, 2004, 29 TexReg 5640; amended to be effective June 12, 2013, 38 TexReg 3649

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