WEST PLAINS, Mo. –The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) invites families to discover nature at a frog gigging clinic from 6:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., Friday, July 6, at MDC’s Ozark Regional Office in West Plains. The clinic is free and open to youth ages 10 to 15 and their parent or adult mentors.
Participants will have a classroom session to learn the basics of frog gigging safety, equipment, identification, and regulations. Then, the lucky frog giggers will have the opportunity to put their knowledge to the test and go frog gigging with the help of MDC staff. Participants will also learn how to clean their catch to take home and cook.
“Frog gigging is fun for the whole family,” said John Ackerson, MDC fisheries management biologist. “This is an activity young kids can enjoy and have success with.”
Ackerson said rubber boots or old shoes are recommended, as well as headlamps and flashlights. MDC will provide all other equipment, as well as an evening meal of fish and frog legs. All attendees are invited to eat and learn about frog regulations and biology, but only youth may participate in the gigging opportunity.
Frogs may be harvested with either fishing or hunting permits, as long as the method matches the permit. With a fishing permit, frogs may be harvested by hand, hand net, atlatl, gig, bow, trotline, throw line, limb line, bank line, jug line, snagging, snaring, grabbing or pole and line during frog season. With a hunting permit, frogs may be harvested using .22-caliber or smaller rimfire rifle or pistol, pellet gun, bow, crossbow, atlatl or by hand or hand net.
This year’s frog season begins at sunset on June 30 and will continue through Oct. 31. Daily limit is eight bullfrogs or green frogs and 16 in possession. Children under the age of 16 and resident adults over 65 are not required to have a permit.
Pre-registration and transportation from the office to area ponds are required. To register for this free clinic, or for more information, call MDC’s Ozark Regional Office at (417)256-7161. The Ozark Regional Office is located at 551 Joe Jones Blvd. in West Plains.
Discover Nature – Families programs are designed to help adults and children explore nature and master outdoor skills together. To learn about other Discover Nature programs in the Ozarks, go online to www.mdc.mo.gov/events.