MDC invites public to smallmouth bass program Feb. 20

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – All gamefish species have their devoted followings among anglers, but in this part of the state, few species are held in higher regard than smallmouth bass.

People can learn more about how to hook this popular fish at the free Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) program “Fishing Skills: Smallmouth Bass” on Feb. 20 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at MDC’s Springfield Conservation Nature Center, 4601 S. Nature Center Way.

MDC Fisheries Biologists Ben Parnell and Dave Woods will discuss smallmouth characteristics, lure options, fishing techniques, places to go, and current research and management activities for this fish. The program is for all ages. People can register online at

Smallmouth are one of several species that comprise the group of fish known as “black bass.” One reason for smallmouth’s popularity is where it lives. Some are found in lakes, but smallmouth are best known as stream fish. Another reason many anglers have a special affection for “smallies” is related to the habitat they represent – clear, pristine streams that have a steady flow of water. Smallmouth have little tolerance for siltation and turbidity and occur only in streams that maintain a steady flow. This fish’s preference for clear, clean water makes it a “canary in a coal mine” for those who study water quality in streams.

Information about this and other upcoming programs at the Springfield Conservation Nature Center can also be obtained by calling 417-888-4237 or by going to