Times are Changing

I do not make a practice of discussing changes and developments here at TSFMag in this column but the announcements I have are sufficiently important that I feel this is the right place.

Capt. Mickey Eastman has been a personal friend of many years and has written our monthly Galveston column for nearly a decade. I first met Mick as the founder and organizer of Gulf Coast TroutMasters, the granddaddy of trout tournament series here in Texas. In addition to being one of the most colorful and entertaining fishing guides on the Texas coast for more than thirty years, Mickey's angling skill and numerous wins in major fishing competition make him a headliner and icon wherever he goes. His success as host of the popular Houston-based 610AM Sports Radio-Outdoors Show should surprise nobody, and he's still on the water guiding clients when he's not in front of the microphone.

Mickey is moving on to concentrate on his radio broadcasts and his beloved guiding, work that he'll likely continue until the Good Lord or a rogue wave in Trinity Bay takes him from us.

Capt. Steve Hillman is taking the reins of our Galveston guide column and I trust you will join me in wishing Steve a hearty TSFMag welcome. Steve cut his eye teeth in Galveston saltwater, learning to fish at a tender age and participating in the family oyster and seafood business while earning a degree from University of Houston in Natural Resource Management. If you grow up learning to wring a living from saltwater, it is very safe to say you are no stranger to hard work. Steve too has been making a mark in the Galveston charter business, not a 30 year veteran of the trade just yet, but his success so far has him well on his way. Having the who's who of Texas fishing on the various bays has always been our goal and we believe Capt. Steve fits the bill very nicely.

Next up, I want to say a few words about the regulatory changes the TPW commission adopted last month. Effective this September, a new set of flounder regs will become law coastwide and a new set of seatrout regs for the middle-coast and Upper Laguna/Baffin region has been implemented.

I have never had a lot to say editorially regarding southern flounder but I have been strongly encouraging more conservative seatrout regulations since the days of TPW's Spotted Seatrout Work Group outreach back in 2002.

While not universally popular, more than two-thirds of anglers who participated in public comment to TPW during the most recent regulatory cycle agree. This change is most welcome in my view, if not a bit overdue.