1999 Wildlife Code Changes

Rule changes that appear in the 1999 Wildlife Code, which is available now, become effective March 1, 1999, and are highlighted in this summary. Hunters, anglers and trappers are encouraged to familiarize themselves with rule changes before venturing afield.

FISHING

Several fishing rule changes are being established in 1999.

The opening date of the black bass season in streams in a portion of the state is the fourth Saturday in May. This regulation change eliminates confusion about whether reference to Memorial Day (the traditional opening weekend) means the traditional date or the official observance date of the holiday.

The location of the no-fishing zone on the Osage River and Lake of the Ozarks is changed to 525 feet on the left descending bank and 977 feet on the right descending bank below Truman Dam. This is to further restrict the harvest of large catfish in this area.

A regulation change opens significant tributaries of the Meramec and Current River trout special management areas to fishing with all lures and baits (fishing rules on special trout areas on the two rivers limit tackle to artificial lures and flies so more fish survive after hooking and release).

There is a new authorization for people with disabilities to fish by methods not described in the Wildlife Code if the disability prevents fishing by prescribed methods.

The closing date of the winter snagging, snaring and grabbing season for fish will be aligned with the closing date of the gigging season. Effective March 1, 1999, the ending date of the seasons will become January 31.

Landowners who have ponds that were stocked with fish by the Conservation Department will be allowed to stock other species of fish in those ponds. A list of the fish species allowed appears in the Wildlife Code.

A daily tag at Montauk, Bennett Spring and Roaring River state parks and Maramec Spring Park, where trout are stocked daily, is $3; the tag is $2 for anglers 15 years of age and younger. A winter no-creel trout permit is $5.

HUNTING

A significant change allows resident and non-resident deer hunters to use either a modern firearm or a muzzleloading firearm on a single permit. Hunters will no longer be required to choose one type of firearm over the other prior to the season. The December portion of the firearms deer season will still require use of a muzzleloader, but the change provides nine days of additional hunting opportunity during December for hunters who