Permit required of everyone, six-fish season limit
PRATT — The Kansas paddlefish season begins March 15 and runs through May 15, and paddlefish snaggers should be aware of some new rules for 2007. The first new rule is that anyone snagging must have a paddlefish permit -- good for six paddlefish. Only one permit is allowed per angler for the season. Secondly, the $12.15 permit includes six paddlefish tags that must be attached to each fish immediately upon catch, if the fish meets the required length limit (see below). Snaggers must sign each tag; record the county, date, and time of harvest; and attach the tag to the lower jaw of the paddlefish. Tagging paddlefish at designated check-in stations is no longer required.

Other rules include the following:
in addition to the paddlefish permit, a valid fishing license is required (unless exempt by law);

  • the daily creel limit is two;
  • the possession limit is six;
  • other sportfish snagged must be immediately released;
  • anglers must stop snagging once the daily limit is reached;
  • paddlefish may be snagged using pole and line with not more than two single or treble hooks (one hook, barbless-only, in the Neosho River); and
  • all locations have a 34-inch length limit (measured from eye to fork of tail) except Browning Oxbow Lake, where there is a 24-inch length limit.

Once rivers rise, paddlefish enter the state in search of spawning areas, usually when water temperatures approach 60 degrees. This usually occurs shortly before or after the March 15 opening of the season, when paddlefish may be taken at the following locations:

  • the Neosho River below the Chetopa and Burlington city dams;
  • Marais des Cygnes River below Osawatomie Dam;
  • Browning Oxbow Lake of the Missouri River; and
  • other areas posted by KDWP.

Nonsport fish (carp, drum, grass carp, threadfin and gizzard shad, goldfish, gar, suckers including carpsucker and buffalo, goldeye, and bowfin) may also be snagged in waters posted open to snagging during the paddlefish season. There are no limits on nonsport fish.