SCA Texas

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May 28th, 2002


Only months after its inception, the Saltwater Conservation Association of Texas (SCA) has successfully retired its first two shrimp trawl licenses using private funds raised by members. SCA’s goal is to reduce the number of bay shrimping licenses in Texas waters and works in conjunction with Texas Parks & Wildlife Department in the license buy back program.

“We are very happy to be able to retire our first two bay shrimping licenses after being in existence only fourteen months,” said SCA co-founder Jeff Foerster. “We have over five hundred members and our organization’s dramatic growth is testimony that Texas outdoorsmen are dedicated to improving our coastal fisheries.”

SCA’s mission is to purchase and retire as many bay shrimping licenses as possible. Up to five or more pounds of by catch is killed to harvest one pound of shrimp. Unfortunately, a significant amount of the catch from Texas bays is destined to be used in such products as high protein animal feed.

“Over 80 million pounds of pin perch, piggies, croaker, flounder, mullet and other marine organisms were killed and dumped overboard by shrimpers last year,” Foerster continued. “Losing this huge amount of biomass negatively impacts the marine food chain and ultimately hurts sport fishing. Reducing the number of bay shrimpers dragging shrimp trawls on the bottom will also improve water clarity in our bays. ”

Texas Parks & Wildlife instituted the shrimp trawl license buy-back program in 1995. A three dollar surcharge on recreational saltwater stamps was authorized by the state ; the proceeds are used to buy back and retire bay shrimp licenses. Texas Parks & Wildlife and SCA are working together to identify possible buy-back candidates. In addition to monies spent by Texas Parks & Wildlife, SCA is buying back licenses with private funds thereby reducing the overall number of trawling nets that remain in service.

“We hit a home run on our first pitch,” said Foerster. “Although our charter is to reduce bay shrimping licenses, a unique opportunity presented itself and we were able to buy back a set of bay shrimping license, as well as a shrimp boat from the same person. The boat will be sold to someone outside the shrimping business.”

“As we move forward after this achievement, SCA’s goals are to increase membership, and to forge solid relationships with other conservation organizations, conservation-minded businesses and charitable organizations. We have a number of licenses lined up to buy back and are aggressively raising funds to continue our success,” Foerster concluded.

About SCA

Saltwater Conservation Association of Texas is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization made up entirely of volunteers. A significant percentage of our membership belongs to at least one other marine conservation organization. There are no paid employees which allows expenses to be kept to a minimum.

To learn more about SCA and our efforts to improve the coastal fisheries in Texas, you may either go to our web site at or contact Jeff Foerster at 512-392-1256.