MDC reminds hunters and anglers squirrel and black bass seasons open May 22

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) encourages the public to discover nature this summer by squirrel hunting and black bass fishing. Both seasons open Saturday, May 22.


The hunting season on eastern gray and fox squirrels runs May 22 through Feb. 15, 2022. Allowed methods include shotguns, rifles, and other legal firearm methods, as well as archery equipment, slingshots, or atlatls. The daily limit for hunting and trapping is ten and the possession limit is 20. Hunters may harvest squirrels with the following permits: Archery Hunting, Daily Small Game, Small Game Hunting and Fishing, and Small Game Hunting.

“Pursuing small game is a great way to introduce people to hunting,” said MDC Education Program Coordinator Justin McGuire. “Because of the long season, liberal daily limits, and abundance of game, squirrel hunting provides lots of outdoor opportunity throughout different seasons in Missouri.”

Squirrels may also be harvested with cage-style traps during the hunting season as long as hunters have valid permits. Traps must be labeled with the hunter’s full name and address, or Conservation Number, be attended daily, and have an opening of 144 square-inches or smaller.

Get more information on squirrel hunting and trapping from MDC’s 2021 Summary of Missouri Hunting and Trapping Regulations at

Have a successful hunt and need recipe suggestions? Browse recipes for squirrel at


Anglers may catch-and-keep black bass, such as largemouth, smallmouth, spotted/Kentucky bass, May 22 through Feb. 2022. These fish can be found in most streams south of the Missouri River. Black bass can be caught and released legally throughout the year anywhere in Missouri, and legal-sized bass may be kept all year long from impoundments and streams with no closed season. In most state waters, the daily limit on black bass is six. Fish taken from most rivers and streams must be 12-inches long. Additional regulations may apply to specific waters or areas. Anglers must have a valid fishing permit or be exempt.

Find more information on bass fishing in MDC’s 2021 Summary of Missouri Fishing Regulations, available where permits are sold, or online at

Find tips from MDC on cooking fish at


Take your permits with you wherever you go in nature using MDC’s Mo Hunting or Mo Fishing mobile apps. Users can keep their hunting and fishing permits on the apps, find nearby places to hunt or fish, check area regulations, and more. Both MO Hunting and MO Fishing apps are available for download for Apple and Android users. Find more information at