Hunt squirrel and catch-and-keep black bass beginning May 23

The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) reminds hunters and anglers that squirrel and black bass season opens May 23, the Saturday before Memorial Day.

Squirrels

The open season on eastern gray and fox squirrels runs May 23 through Feb. 15, 2021, according to a press release from MDC. Allowed methods are shotguns, rifles and other legal firearm methods, as well as archery equipment, slingshots, or atlatls. The daily limit for hunting and trapping is 10 and the possession limit is 20. Hunters can harvest squirrels with the following permits: Archery Hunting, Daily Small Game, Small Game Hunting and Fishing and Small Game Hunting.

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 144 square inches or smaller.

“Small-game hunting is a great way to introduce kids or young adults to hunting,” said MDC Small Game Coordinator Dave Hoover. “Species like squirrels provide abundant opportunities to be successful, making the learning experience fun.”

Black Bass

Anglers may catch-and-keep black bass, such as largemouth, smallmouth, spotted/Kentucky bass, May 23 through Feb. 28, 2021, 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 statewide. In most state waters, the daily limit on black bass is six. Fish taken from most rivers and streams must be 12-inches long. Additionally, specific 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 2020 Summary of Missouri Fishing Regulations, available where permits are sold, or online at https://short.mdc.mo.gov/Znv.

MDC reminds the public that it is still critical to continue to heed all recommendations for physical distancing, avoiding overcrowding, handwashing, and other public health measures during outdoor activities.