MDC offers Discover Nature ̶ Fishing programs in northwest MO

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St. Joseph, Mo.  ̶  The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) is offering a new program to help kids and families gain angling skills and confidence. MDC's Discover Nature - Fishing Program is free and teaches participants about fishing tackle, methods and where to go.

MDC will offer upcoming Discover Nature - Fishing classes this autumn in northwest Missouri.

  • Lessons One through Four will be offered 6 to 8 p.m., Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, Sept. 8-10, at MDC's Northwest Regional Office, 701 James McCarthy Drive, in St. Joseph.
  • Lessons One through Four will be offered 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 3, at the Lawson City Lake in Lawson, Mo.
  • Lessons One through Four will be offered 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 17, at the Litton Center in Chillicothe, Mo.
  • Beginning Fly Fishing will be offered 10 a.m. to 12 Noon on Saturday, Nov. 7, at the MDC Northwest Regional Office in St. Joseph.

Discover Nature ̶ Fishing classes are geared towards families who desire to learn the basics about fishing. Any adult or family with children age 7 and above can register by calling 816-271-3100. Each youth participant should be accompanied by an adult.

Discover Nature – Fishing builds upon basics with lessons about angling gear, fishing skills, fish biology and angling regulations. Classroom teaching is based on hands-on methods. Fishing will be available onsite on a catch-and-release basis. MDC will provide equipment and instructors. The class locations have fishing ponds, but in case of inclement weather, the sites have indoor classrooms.

The lesson outline includes:

  • Lesson One: Equipment, Casting, and Proper Fish Handling
  • Lesson Two: How to Tie a Knot and Bait a Hook
  • Lesson Three: Five Common Missouri Fish - Their Anatomy, Habitat, and Life Cycle
  • Lesson Four: Fishing with Lures and Fishing Regulations

Discover Nature ̶ Fishing will be an ongoing program statewide, so watch for notices of future sessions. MDC also welcomes volunteer instructors to teach fishing skills to others. Anyone interested in volunteering to teach angling to youth can also call 816-271-3100. Fishable waters are often found close to home, even in urban areas.

Time and expense need not be barriers to going fishing. Tackle choices and methods can be simple and effective for catching fish. MDC's Discover Nature - Fishing Program is open to anyone who wishes to learn about the sport. Fishing is fun and gets people outdoors in fresh air and nature. Missouri is a great place to fish. For more information on fishing and conservation see