Paddlefish

Species Description

Sharklike, with a greatly elongated paddle-like snout. Bluish-gray to blackish on back, grading to white on belly. Snout in small individuals is more 1/3 of the fish’s total length. Mouth is large, lacks teeth (in adults) and is far back beneath the head. Eyes small, just above the front edge of the mouth and directed down and forward instead of to the side. Gill cover has a fleshy, pointed flap. Tail is forked, the upper lobe longer than the lower. No scales, except for a patch on the tail.

Fishing Type
Game
Biological Information
Title
Seasons
Paddlefish

Paddlefish side view

Season Closed
  • March 15, 2021 to April 30, 2021
Notes

Measure paddlefish from eye to fork of tail to determine size.

Limits apply on all waters except on areas with special regulations, including Lake of the Ozarks, Table Rock Lake, Truman Lake, and their tributaries. Check area regulations for additional restrictions.

Extracted paddlefish eggs may not be possessed while on waters of the state or adjacent banks and may not be transported. Paddlefish eggs may not be bought, sold, or offered for sale.

Daily limit: 2
Possession limit: 4
Size limit: 24-inch minimum in most areas; 34-inch minimum on Lake of the Ozarks, Table Rock Lake, Truman Lake, and their tributaries

Season Open
  • March 15, 2021 to May 15, 2021
  • September 15, 2021 to December 15, 2021
Notes

These regulations apply to paddlefishing on the Mississippi River.

Daily limit: 2
Possession limit: 4
Size limit: minimum 24"

Season Open
  • March 15, 2021 to May 15, 2021
  • September 15, 2021 to December 15, 2021
Notes

These regulations apply to paddlefishing on the Mississippi River.

Daily limit: 2
Possession limit: 4
Size limit: minimum 24"