I emailed the fellow that is in charge of state and water body records in Texas. I was told that Tenkara would fall in the category "other methods." It does not qualify for "catch & release." The catch would have to be measured, weighed on state certified scales, pictures taken, and have a witness to sign the application. My nearest scales would be over 30 miles away - nice dead fish!
The only reason it is not fly fishing - no reel. It is lumped with cane poles, trot lines, jug lines, spears, and others.