TPWD Abandoned Crab Trap Removal Program


Help us smash traps in Anahuac and Bolivar at the 2017 Crab Trap Removal Event

We will be collecting and smashing abandoned and derelict crab traps at two sites this year on Saturday, February 18 from 9am-1pm! Help us as a boat volunteer (on the water collecting traps), or a land-based volunteer (helping offload traps, smashing them, and tossing them in the dumpster). Galveston Bay Foundation will have sites at Fort Anahuac Park in Anahuac, TX and at the Stingaree Restaurant in Bolivar, Texas.

The Abandoned Crab Trap Removal Program was created by Senate Bill 1410 during the 77th (2001) legislative session. The bill granted the TPWD Commission authority to create a ten day crab trap closure period that begins on the third Friday of February every year. During this time, if anyone sees abandoned crab traps in the water, they can remove them to prevent harm to crabs and other creatures.

At GBF’s removal site in 2016, several large bags of recyclable debris, monofilament fishing line, and trash were also removed from around Fort Anahuac Park thanks to a big effort by Houston Zoo volunteers.

To learn more about this state-wide crab trap removal program, click here.


Please contact Emily Ford at for more information on how to sponsor this event!

Thank you to our 2016 sponsors and supporters:

Chambers County, Sea World Busch Gardens,  Chambers County Sheriffs Dept., The Houston Zoo , Texas Parks and Wildlife, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Texas Game Wardens.

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More about the event:

Abandoned crab traps result in the inadvertent death of several aquatic species including, but not limited to, blue crabs, estuarine sport fish, stone crabs, birds, diamond-backed terrapins, river otter, and–if found on land–terrestrial animals as well. Not only are abandoned traps hazardous to wildlife, they are unsightly, problematic for fishers and boaters, and can even smother seagrasses. Each year, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) closes crabbing in all Texas waters for a 10-day period in February. Any trap left in the water during those ten days is considered “litter” under state law and is susceptible to being removed. TPWD and volunteers, statewide, have been removing crab traps during this closure since 2002, and have recovered nearly 28,000 traps. Galveston Bay Foundation aids the TPWD program to remove traps during the closed period by providing equipment and volunteers to help with the effort.

For more information about the event or to become involved, contact Emily at or by calling 281.322.3381 x207