Paddlefish Snagging


The paddlefish snagging season is open March 15 through May 15 on posted areas inside Chetopa and Burlington city parks on the Neosho River; Neosho River at Iola, downstream from dam to city limits; Marais des Cygnes River below Osawatomie Dam, downstream to posted boundary; and Marais des Cygnes River on the upstream boundary of Marais des Cygnes Wildlife Area, downstream to the Kansas-Missouri border and the Browning Oxbow of the Missouri River. Paddlefish may be snagged using pole and line with not more than two single or treble barbless hooks. Catch and release is allowed in Burlington, Chetopa, and Iola except that once attached to a stringer, a fish becomes part of the daily creel. The daily creel limit for paddlefish is two and the season limit is six. On Missouri River boundary waters, there is a 24-inch minimum length limit. There is a 34- inch minimum length limit on the Marias des Cygnes River. Measure paddlefish from the front of the eye to the fork of the tail.

A paddlefish permit ($12.50, youth $7.50) includes six carcass tags. However, an angler younger than 16 may use an adult’s paddlefish permit while accompanied by that adult with at least one unused carcass tag in possession. Each paddlefish snagged and kept by the youth angler shall be included as part of the daily limit creel limit of the permit holder. Immediately upon attaching fish to stringer, anglers must sign a carcass tag, record the county/date/time of harvest, and attach the carcass tag to the lower jaw of the paddlefish taken. Anglers must stop snagging once the daily creel limit of paddlefish is reached.

Paddlefish caught outside the paddlefish season or in non-snagging areas may be kept if they are hooked in the mouth.

No person may possess paddlefish eggs attached to the egg membrane of more than one fish. No person may possess more than 3 pounds of processed paddlefish eggs or fresh paddlefish eggs removed from the membrane. No person shall ship into or out of, transport into or out of, have in possession with the intent to transport, or cause to be removed from this state any raw unprocessed paddlefish eggs, processed paddlefish eggs or frozen paddlefish eggs. A paddlefish carcass must have all entrails removed before it is transported from Kansas. 

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.

A PDF of the complete Paddlefish Regulation can be found HERE.