MDC virtual program on Feb. 22 to focus on paddlefish snagging

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JOPLIN, Mo. – Snagging for paddlefish and for nongame fish is a unique and challenging form of fishing.

People wanting to learn more about snagging should sign up for the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) virtual program “Fishing Skills: Virtual, Snagging Fish” on Feb. 22. This online program, which will be from 2:30-3 p.m., is being put on by the staff of MDC’s Shoal Creek Conservation Education Center in Joplin. People can register for this program at:

Snagging (also called grabbing) involves hooking a fish in an area other than its mouth. The primary focus of the Feb. 22 program will be paddlefish. MDC Administrative Specialist Tim Smith will discuss about this style of fishing that is used to catch paddlefish, also known as “spoonbill.” Smith will discuss the rods, reels, hooks, and other gear needed for the paddlefish snagging season. He’ll also discuss regulations, techniques, and strategies. Missouri’s paddlefish season is from March 15-April 30.

Although much of this program will be about how to snag paddlefish, Smith will also discuss snagging nongame fish. Missouri has two snagging seasons for nongame fish; March 15 to May 15 and Sept. 15 to Jan. 31. Only species that are classified by Missouri’s Wildlife Code as “nongame fish” are legal to be taken during these seasons. Suckers are the most frequent catch of these snagging seasons, but people also snag for carp, buffalo and other species of nongame fish.

Though this program is free, registration is required to participate. Use the link above. Registrants must provide an e-mail, so a program link can be sent to them. People can stay informed about upcoming programs at MDC’s Shoal Creek Conservation Education Center and other nearby MDC facilities by signing up for text alerts and e-mail bulletins. People who have questions about how to sign up for text alerts from the Shoal Creek Center can call 417-629-3423.

Staff at MDC facilities across the state are holding virtual programs. A listing of these programs can be found at