JACKSON – The Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks (MDWFP) Fisheries Bureau announced a new rule regarding the handling and storage of bait fish captured in dam spillway areas. Anglers using dip or landing nets, cast nets, boat mounted scoops, wire baskets, minnow seines, and minnow traps in dam spillway areas to capture minnows, shad, nongame gross fish and non-native fish must immediately place their catch on ice or in a dry container. The spillway is the area immediately below a dam, and this rule applies to anglers fishing below Arkabutla, Enid, Grenada, Sardis, Ross Barnett, Okatibbee, Aberdeen, Columbus, and Bluff Lake dams.
“This rule is being implemented to prevent the spread of live nonnative fish species like silver carp and bighead carp to new waters,” said MDWFP Fisheries Coordinator, Dennis Riecke. “Since these fish are difficult to distinguish from shad when small, they could be introduced into new waters when used or discarded as live bait.”
This rule becomes effective on May 28, 2017.