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Otters #8422414 10/18/21 04:51 PM
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Saw a wild river otter for the first time while hunting, not legal to shoot where I was though. It came out of a culvert and stared me down for a second, scampered back into the pipe before I could get a picture. I know trapping them is the typical harvest method, but any of you ever shoot one? The one I saw was pretty big, close to four feet long.

Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8422478 10/18/21 05:49 PM
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Originally Posted by 65x55
Saw a wild river otter for the first time while hunting, not legal to shoot where I was though. It came out of a culvert and stared me down for a second, scampered back into the pipe before I could get a picture. I know trapping them is the typical harvest method, but any of you ever shoot one? The one I saw was pretty big, close to four feet long.


They are regulated and protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. They can be legally harvested with the correct permits and a CITES tag. Killing them without the correct permit and a CITES tag is a federal offense and not where you want to be in the legal system.

https://tpwd.texas.gov/business/permits/land/wildlife/cites/



Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8422580 10/18/21 07:24 PM
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Take one and go get it tagged with the CITES tag, no big deal. I would wait til winter when they will be prime and much prettier.

Take, Possess or Sale of Furbearers
Hunter education requirements apply.
A department-issued CITES tag is required to be attached to all otters taken and possessed in this state. No otters may be taken or collected from a public roadway.
Furbearers may be hunted at night on private property with the aid of an artificial light.
No license is required if nuisance furbearers are taken while causing loss or damage to agricultural crops, livestock, poultry, or personal property. However, such animals or their pelts may NOT be possessed or sold.
There is no closed season for recreational harvest.
For more information on COMMERCIAL seasons, legal means, and other rules for furbearers and their pelts, consult the Fur-bearing Animal Digest, available at TPWD Law Enforcement offices or calling (800) 792-1112.
Otter Tags
All otters taken in Texas, except nuisance otters, shall be permanently tagged with a department issued federal Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) tag valid for the year in which the otter was taken within 90 days of take. All otter pelts imported into Texas must be accompanied by evidence of lawful take or possession.

CITES tags for otters may be obtained from:
TPWD Office Address Zip Phone
Beaumont 5550-K Eastex Fwy. 77708 (409) 892-8666
Mt. Pleasant 212 South Johnson 75456 (903) 572-7966
Tyler 3330 South Southwest Loop 323 75701 (903) 534-0388
Lufkin P.O. Box 266 75902 (936) 632-1311
Rusk 801 West 6th Street 75785 (903) 683-2511
Contact Information
For other information concerning hunting and fishing regulations, parks, wildlife or other subjects related to TPWD, call our toll-free number: (800) 792-1112 during regular business hours. At any time of the day, a person may call toll-free (800) 792-GAME (4263) to report a violation of the state's game and fish laws. A reward may be offered to eligible callers who provide information which leads to a conviction.

Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8422798 10/18/21 10:50 PM
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They are neat to watch but I hear they can clean out your pond quickly

Re: Otters [Re: jeffbird] #8423000 10/19/21 01:39 AM
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Originally Posted by jeffbird
Originally Posted by 65x55
Saw a wild river otter for the first time while hunting, not legal to shoot where I was though. It came out of a culvert and stared me down for a second, scampered back into the pipe before I could get a picture. I know trapping them is the typical harvest method, but any of you ever shoot one? The one I saw was pretty big, close to four feet long.


They are regulated and protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. They can be legally harvested with the correct permits and a CITES tag. Killing them without the correct permit and a CITES tag is a federal offense and not where you want to be in the legal system.

https://tpwd.texas.gov/business/permits/land/wildlife/cites/




No permit needed and you can’t get the CITES tag until after you shoot one. If they are a nuisance you don’t have to get the CITES tag as long as you don’t keep them. And yes Biscuit they will destroy a pond.

Re: Otters [Re: krmitchell] #8423029 10/19/21 01:49 AM
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Originally Posted by krmitchell
Originally Posted by jeffbird
Originally Posted by 65x55
Saw a wild river otter for the first time while hunting, not legal to shoot where I was though. It came out of a culvert and stared me down for a second, scampered back into the pipe before I could get a picture. I know trapping them is the typical harvest method, but any of you ever shoot one? The one I saw was pretty big, close to four feet long.


They are regulated and protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. They can be legally harvested with the correct permits and a CITES tag. Killing them without the correct permit and a CITES tag is a federal offense and not where you want to be in the legal system.

https://tpwd.texas.gov/business/permits/land/wildlife/cites/




No permit needed and you can’t get the CITES tag until after you shoot one. If they are a nuisance you don’t have to get the CITES tag as long as you don’t keep them. And yes Biscuit they will destroy a pond.



Would be interested in a reference link for any exceptions because TPWD is not showing them on that reference page. From the TPWD link - emphasis added for ease of reference -

"Otter CITES tags are required for all otters that are legally harvested in Texas. The pelts are required to be tagged with an otter CITES tag regardless of whether or not it is being shipped out of Texas. The otter pelt must be tagged within 90 days of take and is valid for the year in which the otter was taken....

Pelt tags can be obtained by presenting the pelt and your hunting license number at one of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Regional & Field Law Enforcement Offices. Please call the office ahead of your arrival."

Re: Otters [Re: jeffbird] #8423057 10/19/21 02:02 AM
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Originally Posted by jeffbird
Originally Posted by krmitchell
Originally Posted by jeffbird
Originally Posted by 65x55
Saw a wild river otter for the first time while hunting, not legal to shoot where I was though. It came out of a culvert and stared me down for a second, scampered back into the pipe before I could get a picture. I know trapping them is the typical harvest method, but any of you ever shoot one? The one I saw was pretty big, close to four feet long.


They are regulated and protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. They can be legally harvested with the correct permits and a CITES tag. Killing them without the correct permit and a CITES tag is a federal offense and not where you want to be in the legal system.

https://tpwd.texas.gov/business/permits/land/wildlife/cites/




No permit needed and you can’t get the CITES tag until after you shoot one. If they are a nuisance you don’t have to get the CITES tag as long as you don’t keep them. And yes Biscuit they will destroy a pond.



Would be interested in a reference link for any exceptions because TPWD is not showing them on that reference page. From the TPWD link - emphasis added for ease of reference - TPWD states CITES tags are required for ALL otters harvested in Texas.

"Otter CITES tags are required for all otters that are legally harvested in Texas. The pelts are required to be tagged with an otter CITES tag regardless of whether or not it is being shipped out of Texas. The otter pelt must be tagged within 90 days of take and is valid for the year in which the otter was taken."




From the link you posted regarding obtaining tags and permits:
Quote
Pelt tags can be obtained by presenting the pelt and your hunting license number at one of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Regional & Field Law Enforcement Offices. Please call the office ahead of your arrival.


Further reading. https://tpwd.texas.gov/regulations/...g-animal-regulations/general-regulations

Quote
Otter Tags

All otters taken in Texas, except nuisance otters, shall be permanently tagged with a department issued federal Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) tag valid for the year in which the otter was taken within 90 days of take. All otter pelts imported into Texas must be accompanied by evidence of lawful take or possession.


Quote
No license is required if nuisance furbearers are taken while causing loss or damage to agricultural crops, livestock, poultry, or personal property. However, such animals or their pelts may NOT be possessed or sold.

Last edited by krmitchell; 10/19/21 02:02 AM.
Re: Otters [Re: krmitchell] #8423092 10/19/21 02:20 AM
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Originally Posted by krmitchell
Originally Posted by jeffbird
Originally Posted by krmitchell
Originally Posted by jeffbird
[quote=65x55]Saw a wild river otter for the first time while hunting, not legal to shoot where I was though. It came out of a culvert and stared me down for a second, scampered back into the pipe before I could get a picture. I know trapping them is the typical harvest method, but any of you ever shoot one? The one I saw was pretty big, close to four feet long.


They are regulated and protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. They can be legally harvested with the correct permits and a CITES tag. Killing them without the correct permit and a CITES tag is a federal offense and not where you want to be in the legal system.

https://tpwd.texas.gov/business/permits/land/wildlife/cites/




No permit needed and you can’t get the CITES tag until after you shoot one. If they are a nuisance you don’t have to get the CITES tag as long as you don’t keep them. And yes Biscuit they will destroy a pond.



Would be interested in a reference link for any exceptions because TPWD is not showing them on that reference page. From the TPWD link - emphasis added for ease of reference - TPWD states CITES tags are required for ALL otters harvested in Texas.

"Otter CITES tags are required for all otters that are legally harvested in Texas. The pelts are required to be tagged with an otter CITES tag regardless of whether or not it is being shipped out of Texas. The otter pelt must be tagged within 90 days of take and is valid for the year in which the otter was taken."




From the link you posted regarding obtaining tags and permits:
Quote
Pelt tags can be obtained by presenting the pelt and your hunting license number at one of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Regional & Field Law Enforcement Offices. Please call the office ahead of your arrival.


Further reading. https://tpwd.texas.gov/regulations/...g-animal-regulations/general-regulations

Quote
Otter Tags

All otters taken in Texas, except nuisance otters, shall be permanently tagged with a department issued federal Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) tag valid for the year in which the otter was taken within 90 days of take. All otter pelts imported into Texas must be accompanied by evidence of lawful take or possession.


Quote
No license is required if nuisance furbearers are taken while causing loss or damage to agricultural crops, livestock, poultry, or personal property. However, such animals or their pelts may NOT be possessed or sold.
[/quote]


Interesting conflict from TPWD as the very page you link, just above your quotes also states:

"A department-issued CITES tag is required to be attached to all otters taken and possessed in this state. No otters may be taken or collected from a public roadway."

I'll give them a call tomorrow as I am already talking with USFWS enforcement people tomorrow, I'll ask them too as the TPWD site says two conflicting things.

One thing I know for certain is River Otter is listed in CITES Appendix II, and that is not a guess.


Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8423103 10/19/21 02:25 AM
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Possessed is the distinction there. At least it was when I spoke with Tyler TPWD a few years back. If they are a nuisance they are fair game, license or not…no CITES tags required as long as you don’t keep the pelts. Hunting/possession outside that requires CITES tag after harvest within 90 days.

Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8423133 10/19/21 02:46 AM
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I am curious now and will report back with what I find out. fwiw - CITES Appendix II listed animals are not threatened or endangered. They are the next level down as vulnerable and could slide into threatened or endangered legal status. So the purpose of the CITES Appendix II listing is to try to track population and distribution trends for each listed species and try to keep them off of the threatened and endangered list.

River Otters are slowly increasing in Texas as water quality improved in many areas. About 25 - 30 years ago, I picked up a road killed River Otter near High Island and turned it in. What I was told at that time was that was the first confirmed River Otter in Texas in 50 years. I have documented them a few times since them including in Hays County near Wimberley a couple of years ago.

At a minimum, TPWD needs to correct conflicting statements on their reference pages. Will report back with what I hear from both the state and federal folks. Hopefully they are on the same page, but have seen them disagree on occasion too.

Good and interesting discussion. 👍


Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8423140 10/19/21 02:52 AM
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Wild they weren’t well dispersed a few years back. I’ve seen them all over east Texas and numerous places in central Texas while fishing. Figured they were like rats nowadays.

Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8423169 10/19/21 03:42 AM
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Wow pretty easy for me to understand.
Nuisance otters can be taken without a license but the pelt may not be kept or possessed.
They are listed as furbearers in Texas so you need a trappers or hunting license to take one.
To keep a pelt you must go to TP&W and get the CITES tag after harvest.

Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8423276 10/19/21 12:10 PM
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Used to watch 3 of them play around on my lease in east TX. They were fun to watch.


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Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8424490 10/20/21 03:48 PM
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What did you find out jeffbird ?

Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8424742 10/20/21 07:25 PM
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We have some up here in Collin County around Lake Lavon. Neighbor had a couple on his game cam behind his house and another neighbor saw one on the side of the road earlier this year. Went back to makes sure it was, what he actually thought it was, confirmed.

Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8426196 10/22/21 07:16 AM
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I do nuisance beaver trapping in Grayson county, and I've caught several the last couple years. Game warden says no problem, but I can't keep them. They go out in the field, but the coyotes don't seem to like them. The buzzards will pick at them, but nothing like a pig or beaver carcass. They are incredibly strong, and I've had them break a chain and pull out of 330s.

Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8427250 10/23/21 10:59 AM
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We have otters in the pond / creek behind our house. We don't own it, so I and my family are happy to watch them play around. Cool critters.

Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8427825 10/23/21 10:45 PM
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I researched all this back when I was thinking about killing one at my place. The real issue from a practical standpoint is that most of the TPWD regional offices did not have otter CITES tags so it would have required a trip to Austin to be legal.

Now that time has passed I’m glad I never killed one and I just enjoy my infrequent sightings these days.


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I learned long ago you can't reason someone out of something they don't reason themselves into.


Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8430316 10/26/21 02:40 PM
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we gotta pond at our place in northern california. they ate 60 ducks over 6 months. not liked.

Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8430430 10/26/21 05:00 PM
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Luckily just passing through from a creek on my property and did not stay at my ponds.

Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8430756 10/26/21 10:58 PM
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We saw a group of otters on our lease about 3 years ago... passing through the creek, boogying along. never seen them again.


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Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8431001 10/27/21 09:47 AM
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We're a long way from a creek & these two were passing thru. Never seen before or after. Cool critters, this is 'Vid Year 2021'.

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Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8438513 11/04/21 01:38 AM
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They are my all time favorite animal. Love watching them play and man talk about great fisherman too lol. First one I ever saw was eating a bass about 4 pounds.

Re: Otters [Re: 65x55] #8454624 11/20/21 06:09 PM
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Short followup, two people in Texas with USFWS that deal with threatened and endangered species both say to get the CITES tag. Both mention it is not supposed to be a big deal, but helps with monitoring the population trend. The contact I deal with at TPWD did not know, but was going up the chain to find out. Never heard back.

Re: Otters [Re: krmitchell] #8454679 11/20/21 07:22 PM
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[/quote]

No permit needed and you can’t get the CITES tag until after you shoot one. If they are a nuisance you don’t have to get the CITES tag as long as you don’t keep them. And yes Biscuit they will destroy a pond.[/quote]

I've got at least three in the pond on my property. I believe they pushed out beavers and took over the beaver den. I see no signs of the beavers anymore. How do they actually destroy a pond? Are you talking about the fish numbers?


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