Rewards offered for return of tags

Crappie fishing will soon pick up across Kansas as the water warms and crappie prepare for their annual spawn. April through June is the time when more anglers fish and more crappie are caught than any other period during the year. Some of these crappie sport special tags that provide important harvest information for fisheries biologists.

From 2003-2005, Kansas Wildlife and Parks (KDWP) biologists tagged crappie in Cedar Bluff, Clinton, Hillsdale, Melvern, and Perry reservoirs. Tags in 2003 were blue, and tags from 2004 and 2005 were yellow. When returned to KDWP, these tags are worth $5, $20, or $100. Anglers who catch tagged crappie are requested to return the tags with a completed short survey card about the fish they caught. These cards are available at local KDWP park offices and area bait shops and must be returned to the Emporia Research Office to be eligible for the rewards.

Forms for each lake are also available on the KDWP website. Type "Crappie Form" in the search box for a list of Crappie Tagging Report forms for lakes where tagged crappie have been taken. To date, only about 30 percent of the tags have been returned.

Anglers who have tags from past years are encouraged to return those tags, so KDWP staff can get a better picture of how many crappie have been caught. For tags caught in 2003-2006, exact dates of catch are not necessary if the month and year of catch are known. The most important information is the tag return.