The Missouri Department of Conservation is taking public input for potential regulations of catfish fishing for the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers. The public comment period will be available through August 15th.
The Department says the regulations are not being considered due to a threat of the blue or flathead catfish population, but the changes are being considered to meet desires of big river catfish anglers and harvesters.
The potential regulations for sport fishing would include establishing a minimum length limit of 18, 21, or 24 inches for blue or flathead catfish on the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers. There is currently no minimum length limit. Another regulation would keep the current daily limit of 5 blue catfish per day on the Missouri River but establish that only 1 blue catfish over 30 inches long can be kept as part of that limit.
The potential commercial fishing regulations would establish a minimum length limit of 18, 21, or 24 inches for blue and flathead catfish on the Mississippi and St Francis Rivers. Those rivers currently have a regulation limit of 15 inches.
The Missouri Department of Conservation has more information about the potential regulation changes available on its website.