"Here's how you can help The Big Tree at Goose Island State Park in Rockport" via Caller Times


Changes are coming to about 80 acres adjacent to the Big Tree, which became part of Goose Island State Park several years ago.

And Texas Parks & Wildlife officials want input from the public on how to proceed with development plans around the iconic coastal live oak, estimated to be more than 1,000 years old.

Public meeting scheduled Aug. 1

An abandoned houses sit on the property as well as a small airplane hangar, complete with landing strip.


Certified arborists from Austin gathered at Goose Island State Park in Rockport to tend to
Big Tree and give treat it with the best possible care on Friday.

This is a revised plan of proposed developments on the Big Tree property, but this is not the final plan.
(Photo: Courtesy TPWD)

The Big Tree Ranch area in Aransas County is considered critical habitat for whooping cranes next to Goose Island State Park. Texas Parks & Wildlife purchased the land several years ago, using $2 million from an oil spill settlement.

The department has scheduled a public meeting from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Aug. 1 at the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension office at 892 Airport Road, in Rockport.

The is the second public meeting. Much input was gathered at the original meeting. Department officials plan to reveal a revised plan, based, in part, on feedback from the public.

Following the presentation will be a question and answer period. Comments and questions also may be submitted until Sept. 1 by mail, phone, or email to the following addresses:

Justin Fleury at TPWD headquarters; 4200 Smith School Road; Austin, TX, 78744; or Justin.Fleury@tpwd.texas.gov; Call 512-389-4367

Reagan Faught in Rockport; 715 Texas Business Highway 35, 78382; Reagan.Faught@tpwd.texas.gov; or call 361-790-0303

  • The Big Tree at Goose Island State Park was named the State Champion Coastal Live Oak (Quercus virginiana) and is one of the largest in the nation.
  • Trunk circumference: 35 feet 1.75 inches
  • Average trunk diameter: 11 feet 2.25 inches
  • Crown spread: 89 feet
  • Height: 44 feet
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