Paddlefishing in North Dakota concludes after full 21-day season

Published: May. 22, 2023 at 2:56 PM CDT
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WILLISTON, N.D. (KUMV) - North Dakota’s paddlefishing season wrapped up Sunday, lasting the entire 21-day allotment.

It’s the first time the season didn’t end early since 2018. Amy Krueger with North Star Caviar said several factors played into the longer-than-usual season. They included higher water levels at the confluence, weather, and a slowdown of anglers after the first few days.

“People have grown so used to it being a short season that they all come that first week, then you don’t have that volume of anglers coming that second week to snag,” said Krueger.

The season closed after eight days in 2022 and nine in 2021.

A total of 718 fish were processed during the season, which was the lowest total since 2018. The female’s eggs are processed by North Star Caviar. The proceeds from the food go towards covering operations and ongoing paddlefish research. Krueger said while the female-to-male ratio hasn’t been counted yet, she was happy with this year’s season.

Since there was a complete season this year, the North Dakota Game and Fish department said there’s no additional snag-and-release period.

Previous Coverage: Paddlefish anglers take to the Confluence