CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. – There was a time when very few Missouri children didn’t know how to fish – especially for catfish. Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) fisheries biologists plan to start a catfishing revival with their Youth Pond Catfishing Clinic June 11 at the Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center.
“Fishing is something virtually anyone can have success with,” said Kamaria Pearson, MDC angler education specialist. “This is an opportunity for youth to learn to catch catfish and then have that skill to fall back on for life.”
Pearson said fishing is important to childhood development because of the time spent outdoors. Fishing, as well as other outdoor activities, helps to reduce stress levels and improve academic abilities in children. It’s also a skill that can put food on the table, Pearson said.
“Missouri is a great place to fish, which is why many Missourians remember a time where the weekend family fish-fry was a regular occurrence,” she said. “Kids went fishing with their parents and grandparents all the time – it’s just what they did. With this and other fishing programs, we’re hoping to introduce today’s youth to the fun of fishing and its many rewards.”
Pearson said the clinic is from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. with opportunities to learn about the native catfish species of Missouri, their life cycle, and habitat before trying their luck at the pond. Registration is required by June 10. To register, or for more information, call the center at (573)290-5218. For more information about fishing in Missouri, go online to mdc.mo.gov/fishing.