Note To Our Readers

By |
From Missouri Conservationist: Jul 2015

Get Outdoors for Some Reel Fun This Summer

It’s been an exciting year for fishing in Missouri. There have been six new Missouri state record fish already recorded in 2015. When you see the pictures of these massive fish and the excitement of the anglers who wrangled them in, you are reminded of the summer splendor of fishing in Missouri. However, regardless of the size of one’s catch, relax and enjoy your fishing adventures with family and friends.

For many, fishing is the first gateway to the great out-doors. It is an activity for the whole family, young and old, with minimal supplies needed and lots of fishing spots close to home. With more than 1.1 million anglers in the state, Missouri has a long and rich tradition of fishing, with abundant lakes and streams producing exceptional fish for anglers of all ages.

The Department raises and stocks approximately 10 mil-lion fish each year from our four warm-water hatcheries, including paddlefish, striped bass, catfish, walleye, muskie, lake sturgeon, and pallid sturgeon. The five cold-water hatcheries raise and stock close to 5 million rainbow and brown trout each year. Not only are the hatcheries interesting places to visit with their educational exhibits and special tours, but they help provide a diverse fishing opportunity for anglers across the state.

The Department has two fishing programs to acknowledge and honor anglers for their catches. The Missouri State Record Fish Program recognizes the largest fish in two categories — pole-and-line and alternative methods. To qualify, fish must be caught by legal methods from Missouri waters, be a species included on the Missouri state record fish list, meet or exceed the current record, and be examined and weighed by Department staff. Anglers are awarded a plaque and a coveted place on the state record fish list.

The Master Angler Award program recognizes anglers who catch memorable or trophy-size fish in Missouri even though they aren’t state record holders. For example, a young angler recently caught a 4-pound, 11-ounce black crappie, which was a whopper, but did not break the state record of 5 pounds. After completing an application, an official certificate is sent to honor that significant catch in Missouri. For more information on both of these fishing programs, visit

The Department strives to keep Missourians informed about great fishing opportunities around the state. We have a free Find MO Fish app available at, which provides quick access to weekly fishing reports, fishing hot spots, regulation information, and a comprehensive fish guide. It’s a handy tool for new and seasoned anglers.

We have great fishing in Missouri. I hope you’ll find time this summer to enjoy the outdoors and experience it firsthand. Perhaps you’ll even be the next state record holder with your photo in the news. I look forward to seeing that this summer.

Robert L. Ziehmer, director

This Issue's Staff

Editor - Angie Daly Morfeld
Art Director - Cliff White
Staff Writer/Editor - Bonnie Chasteen
Staff Writer - Heather Feeler
Photographer - Noppadol Paothong
Photographer - David Stonner
Designer - Stephanie Thurber
Circulation - Laura Scheuler