Kansas Fishing Law

Are you planning to go fishing in Kansas? Before you pack your fishing gear, it’s important to familiarize yourself with Kansas fishing laws and regulations in the state. Kansas has specific fishing rules in place to ensure that fishing remains a sustainable and enjoyable activity for all anglers.

From licensing requirements to fishing limits, this article will cover everything you need to know about Kansas fishing law. So, keep reading to make sure that you are prepared to cast your line and have a great time!

Kansas Fishing Laws

Key Takeaways

  • Kansas has fishing laws in place to ensure that fishing remains sustainable and enjoyable for all anglers.
  • A fishing license is required to fish in Kansas, and there are different types of licenses available.
  • The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism sets fishing limits on the maximum number and size of fish that can be caught and kept.
  • Fishing seasons in Kansas include specific dates when certain species of fish can legally be caught.
  • Anglers must follow additional fishing regulations in Kansas, such as specific gear requirements, bait restrictions, and protected species.

Licensing Requirements in Kansas

Fishing in Kansas requires a valid fishing license, which can be obtained through the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT) website or an authorized vendor.

Anglers must purchase a license before fishing in the state and are required to have it physically present on them while fishing.

The KDWPT offers various types of fishing licenses, including Resident Annual, Non-Resident Annual, and One-Day licenses. The costs of each license vary depending on the angler’s residency and the duration of the license.

For more information on licensing requirements and fees, visit the KDWPT website or contact the department directly.

Fishing Limits in Kansas

Anglers venturing out to Kansas’s lakes and rivers need to adhere to specific fishing limits to help preserve the state’s fish populations and maintain sustainable fishing practices. The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism outlines these fishing limits and regulations to ensure that anglers can enjoy a bountiful catch today and in the future.

Fish SpeciesSize LimitBag Limit
Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass15 inches5 fish in total, daily and possession limit combined
Channel and Blue CatfishNo size limit5 in total, daily and possession limit combined
Crappie and White BassNo size limit50 in total, daily and possession limit combined

These are just some of the most common fish species and their fishing limits in Kansas. Be sure to check the state’s fishing regulations for complete details and other important information.

Remember that as an angler, you play a crucial role in safeguarding Kansas’s fisheries for future generations. Consistently abide by the fishing limits, respect regulations, and release fish carefully to ensure a productive and sustainable fishing environment.

Fishing limits in Kansas

Fishing Seasons in Kansas

Fishing season in Kansas offers plenty of opportunities for anglers to catch various fish species. The dates for fishing seasons in Kansas vary depending on the species and location, and anglers should always consult the Kansas Fishing Regulations Summary for the most up-to-date information.

Fish SpeciesSeason Dates
Bass (Largemouth and Smallmouth)January 1 to December 31
CrappieJanuary 1 to December 31
WiperJanuary 1 to December 31
TroutNovember 1 to April 15 (catch and release only, except in select waters)
Catfish (all species)January 1 to December 31
WalleyeJanuary 1 to March 14 (catch and release only); March 15 to April 30 (two fish daily limit); May 1 to December 31 (five fish daily limit)

During the spawning season, some species have specific restrictions. For example, it is illegal to possess or transport fish that are removed from the water during their spawning periods, which typically occur from late February to early June. It’s important to stay informed and respect the fishing regulations in Kansas to ensure a sustainable and enjoyable fishing experience.

Fishing Regulations in Kansas

Anglers in Kansas should be aware of additional fishing regulations beyond licensing and fishing limits. These regulations include gear requirements, bait restrictions, and protected species. It is important to follow these regulations to ensure sustainable fishing practices and the protection of fish habitats.

Gear Requirements

Anglers must follow specific gear requirements while fishing in Kansas. Barbless hooks are required in many waters to promote catch and release fishing and reduce harm to fish populations. In addition, certain waters may have restrictions on the type of fishing gear allowed, such as the use of only artificial lures or seasonal restrictions on the use of certain types of bait.

Bait Restrictions

The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism has established bait restrictions to prevent the spread of invasive species, such as Asian carp. It is illegal to use live baitfish or crayfish in most Kansas waters, except for certain permitted baitfish species and crayfish for personal consumption. Check the Kansas fishing regulations before using any bait in a new fishing location to ensure compliance with these regulations.

Protected Species

Some fish species in Kansas are protected and have specific rules and regulations to ensure their conservation and protection. These species include black bass, paddlefish, and pallid sturgeon. It is important to know the rules and regulations regarding these protected species to avoid fines and penalties.

Recent Updates

Anglers should stay informed about updates or changes to the Kansas fishing law. Some recent updates include changes to the creel limits for certain fish species and new restrictions on the use of gizzard shad as bait in certain waters. Be sure to check for any updates or changes before hitting the water to ensure compliance with the most current fishing laws and regulations.

Catch and Release Practices

Practicing catch and release fishing is an effective way to protect the fish population and promote sustainable fishing practices in Kansas. By releasing fish back into the water, anglers can help maintain healthy fish populations and ensure that future generations can enjoy the same fishing experiences.

Guidelines for Catch and Release Fishing:

  1. Use barbless hooks to minimize injury to the fish.
  2. Wet your hands before handling the fish to prevent removing the protective slime layer on their skin.
  3. Handle the fish gently and avoid squeezing or dropping them.
  4. Release the fish as quickly as possible and avoid keeping them out of the water for too long.

Benefits of Catch and Release Fishing:

Aside from protecting the fish population, practicing catch and release fishing can also benefit the angler. Releasing larger fish back into the water allows them to continue to grow and potentially be caught again in the future. Additionally, catch and release fishing can provide a sense of personal satisfaction and contribute to a more enjoyable fishing experience.

The Importance of Proper Fish Handling:

Proper fish handling techniques are crucial for ensuring that released fish survive and remain healthy. Using the right tools and techniques can help promote the well-being of released fish and contribute to the overall sustainability of our fisheries.

Fish Catching releasing practice in Kansas

Fishing Safety Tips

Fishing is an enjoyable outdoor activity, but it is essential always to prioritize safety when on the water. Here are some fishing safety tips to keep in mind while enjoying your angling experience in Kansas:

  • Always wear a life jacket: Whether you are on a boat or fishing from shore, wearing a life jacket can save your life in case of an emergency.
  • Learn boating safety: If you’re operating a boat, make sure you understand and follow boating safety rules and guidelines.
  • Check the weather: Be sure to check weather reports before heading out and stay aware of changes throughout the day. In Kansas, weather can change rapidly, and it’s crucial to be prepared for the conditions.
  • Be cautious around water: Always be aware of your surroundings and take appropriate precautions when fishing near or in the water. Avoid walking on slippery rocks or in areas with strong currents.
  • Use proper gear: Wearing appropriate footwear and clothing can help prevent injuries while fishing. Additionally, make sure to use fishing gear correctly to prevent accidents and damage to your equipment.

By following these fishing safety tips, you can ensure a fun and safe angling experience in the beautiful waters of Kansas.

Conservation Efforts in Kansas

The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism is committed to protecting fish habitats and ensuring the sustainability of fishing resources in Kansas. The department conducts surveys and research to monitor fish populations and habitats, implements fish stocking programs to supplement natural reproduction, and works with local communities to improve water quality and protect riparian areas.

The Kansas Fish Habitat Partnerships program, supported by the department, brings together public and private partners to enhance fish habitats and promote sustainable management practices. Through this program, the department has restored over 700 acres of aquatic habitat and created new fishing opportunities for anglers across the state.

Fishing enthusiasts can also play a role in conservation efforts by practicing catch and release fishing, choosing sustainable fishing gear and techniques, and respecting sensitive habitats and protected species. By working together, we can preserve Kansas’ fishing heritage for generations to come.


In conclusion, following the Kansas fishing law and regulations is crucial to ensure a safe, sustainable, and enjoyable angling experience. Kansas offers a diverse range of fishing opportunities, but it’s important to be aware of the licensing requirements, fishing limits, seasons, and regulations to avoid any legal penalties and protect the fish populations. By practicing catch-and-release fishing and adopting safe boating practices, anglers can contribute to the conservation efforts undertaken by the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism to preserve the natural habitats and resources.

Remember, responsible fishing is not just a legal obligation but also a moral responsibility to conserve the aquatic environments for future generations. So, the next time you plan a fishing trip in Kansas, make sure to review the fishing laws and regulations beforehand and enjoy the beauty of the state’s waters while respecting the natural ecosystems.


What are the fishing regulations in Kansas?

The fishing regulations in Kansas include licensing requirements, fishing limits, seasons, and various restrictions to ensure the conservation and sustainable management of fish populations.

How do I obtain a fishing license in Kansas?

To obtain a fishing license in Kansas, you can visit the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism website or a local authorized license vendor. You will need to provide your personal information and pay the required fees.

What are the fishing limits in Kansas?

The fishing limits in Kansas vary depending on the species of fish. It is important to check the specific regulations for each species, but generally, there are limits on the number and size of fish that can be caught and kept by anglers.

When are the fishing seasons in Kansas?

Fishing seasons in Kansas vary for different species of fish. The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism establishes specific dates during which certain fish species can be legally caught. It is important to be aware of these seasons to avoid fishing during prohibited periods.

What are some additional fishing regulations in Kansas?

In addition to licensing requirements, fishing limits, and seasons, there are various other regulations in Kansas. These include gear requirements, bait restrictions, and rules for the protection of certain fish species. It is important to stay updated on the latest fishing regulations to ensure compliance.

How can I practice catch-and-release fishing in Kansas?

To practice catch-and-release fishing in Kansas, you should handle the fish carefully, use proper fishing gear, and release the fish promptly and with minimal harm. Following catch and release guidelines helps conserve fish populations and promote sustainable fishing practices.

What are some fishing safety tips for Kansas?

When fishing in Kansas, it is important to prioritize safety. Some fishing safety tips include wearing a life jacket while boating, checking weather conditions before heading out, and being aware of potential hazards such as strong currents or slippery rocks. Additionally, it is advisable to let someone know your fishing plans and always carry necessary safety equipment.

What conservation efforts are in place for Kansas fishing?

The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism implements various conservation efforts to protect fish habitats and ensure sustainable fishing resources. These efforts include habitat restoration projects, fisheries management programs, and public education initiatives to promote responsible fishing practices.

Additional Resources:

1. Creel limits – https://www.lawinsider.com/dictionary/creel-limit

2. Catch and release fishing – https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/national/resources-fishing/catch-and-release-fishing-best-practices#:~:text=Catch%20and%20release%20fishing%20is,not%20guarantee%20it%20will%20live.

3. Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism – https://ksoutdoors.com/

4. responsible fishing – https://www.fao.org/responsible-fishing/resources/detail/en/c/1316871/

5. fish species in Kansas – https://ksoutdoors.com/Fishing/Fish-ID-Gallery

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