Lakecaster Online

Jasper ISD Life Skills group has a fun day at the Jasper Hatchery
By Patty Lenderman

The Jasper Independent School District Life Skills Group Coordinator and Special Education Teacher Debbie Crocker, brought a group of 10 special kids, ages 8-14 years, to the Jasper Hatchery April 27th. The kids, all with special needs, had a fun learning day at the hatchery learning to fish, watching the bird life and toured the catfish production area. They were able to watch the process of the catfish hatching production in the jars and vats, and were shown the growth process of the catfish from the egg to a hatchling. Howard Elder, Project leader for the Aquatic Habitat Enhancement office along with Ray Lenderman, Biologist Technician, gave the group a grand tour of the facility and kept their hooks baited while they fished in the pond.

Many of these kids had never been fishing before, and the joy on their faces with each catch that they made was abundant and overwhelming. Other Life Skills teachers and coordinators included Ima Kirby, Lillie Fillyaw, Jenie Adams and Tonia Ellis. These kids battle an array of physical and mental challenges with their medical conditions, and experiences like this for them to go out and see, feel and do new things has a wonderful impact.

The Jasper Hatchery facility is open to visitors year round, and mainly does group tours and excursions in the spring when the weather is nice. There is a substantial number of different species of birds, many migratory, that can be seen at this location which is on the Texas Birding Trail. Bald eagles, raptors of all kinds including hawks, falcons and ravens, water birds including great blue herons, white herons and cattle egret are just a few on the list that can be found here. The hatchery raises a variety of fish, including catfish, black bass and coy for re-stocking other water bodies across the state.

The facility has a covered pavilion with picnic tables for the visitors to use, as well as many booklets and pamphlets of information that can be picked up at the office. These pamphlets cover a variety of topics from wildlife information to regulations to vegetation. If you would like more information or would like to schedule a group tour, please contact Howard Elder at 409-384-9965.


The Life Skills teachers of Jasper ISD Debbie Crocker, Ima Kirby, Lillie Fillyaw, Jenie Adams and Tonia Ellis brought their special group of kids to the Jasper Hatchery for a day of new experiences, learning and fun. The kids who came were Alicia Scott, Ashton Jackson, Billy Lee, Desiree Calhoun, Cassandra Sooley, Alexandra Young, Hanna Dickerson, Shana Campbell, Mark Carter and Ashton Jackson

The fishing pond at the Jasper Fish Hatchery is stocked with a variety of species, catfish, bream, crappie and bass. This lucky angler caught a pretty big turtle which was very exciting for the whole group
< photos by Patty Lenderman >

The joy on the faces of these kids when they caught a fish was plain to see

Ray Lenderman holds Billy's catfish for him. Billy didn't want to get too close to his fish

Every child who came got the opportunity to catch their own fish. They were all very proud of their catch

Even the big kids had a great day at the hatchery

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