The use of certain fishing gear and/or the selling of nongame
gross fish are activities regulated under the authority of
commercial fishing regulations.
Non-Game Gross Fish
The category of fishes listed as non-game gross fish are a valuable
resource, supplying protein, income and enjoyment. These fish are
sometimes referred to as rough fish. They consist of catfishes,
buffalo fishes, paddlefish (spoonbill catfish), carp, shad, gar,
drum, and several species of minnows. Non-game gross fish can be
sold by persons having a commercial fishing license.
Commercial Fishing Gear
Non-game gross fish can be harvested using traditional sport
fishing gear, but they can also be caught using commercial fishing
gear, such as, gill nets, trammel nets, hoop nets, slat boxes, and
trotlines. A person must have a commercial fishing license to fish
commercial fishing gear. Although a trotline can be fished on a
sport license, a commercial license is needed when fishing more
than 100 hooks in aggregate or to sell fish.
Two companies in Mississippi are buying the invasive Asian Carp.
They need commercial fisherman to harvest these species. If you
want more information call Dennis Riecke at (601) 432-2207.
Recent Changes to Commercial Fishing
The Mississippi Wildlife Fisheries & Parks Commission has
adopted new rules concerning commercial fishing. The rule
change is necessary to have some regulations consistent with recent
changes by the legislature in the statutes dealing with commercial
fishing. To see a copy of the rules click
here. Recent rule changes are:
- The minimum slat width on slat baskets shall be 1 ¼
- Commercial fishing equipment will be TAGGED by a
water proof tag that has the fisherman's
MDWFP # on the tag. Persons fishing hoop nets, gill nets,
trammel nets, commercial trotlines, crawfish traps, shrimp traps,
and slat baskets will no longer have to purchase a tag from MDWFP.
A valid tag for commercial fishing gear can be (a) a water proof
tag supplied by the fisherman with the owner's MDWFP #;
(b) tags sold by MDWFP after June 25, 2012 - tags where the
owner had to engrave their MDWFP # on the tag; or
(c) old MDWFP Commercial Fishing Equipment Tags sold
prior to June 25, 2012 made valid by the gear
owner flipping these metal tags over and engraving thier MDWFP
# on what used to be the back-side of the tag. The MDWFP # can be
found on one's license above the Date of Birth: It is a number
unique to each customer of the MDWFP. For any tag to be valid
the MDWFP # number on the tag needs to be legible
and at least 1/4 " in height. The MDWFP # number can be
engraved or written with a waterproof marker.
Commercial Fishing Equipment Tags will still be available at MDWFP
offices and state parks while supplies last. A slat basket
license will stil be needed for each slat basket that a person
- Persons with commercial fishing license will be able to fish
a trap for freshwater shrimp.
- Waters open to the harvest of paddlefish for roe will be closed
to all other gill net or trammel net fishing (this
regulation will not apply to Mississippi River).
- There is no license exemptions for those helping a person
with a commercial fishing license fish commercial fishing
gear: A person holding a Freshwater Commercial Fishing
License can be assisted by a helper who has any valid license
issued by the Mississippi Department of Wildlife Fisheries
A commercial fishing license is needed to:
- Sell nongame gross fish and non-native fish
- Fish commercial fishing gear
- Harvest minnows from public waters
- Sell minnows at whole sale
- Raise non-game wildlife in captivity
- Cost: $30 resident, $200 non-resident.,
- Special permits required for paddlefish harvest
- Slat basket license (needed for each basket/box) $30
- Commercial fishing licenses are sold at any MDWFP Regional
Office; at any State Park; North MS Fish Hatchery, and the MDWFP
Office in Jackson. Commercial fishing licenses can also be
purchased by mail.
for Commercial Fishing License
Rules & Regulations
The Mississippi Commission on Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks
recently passed final Rules for the commercial harvest of
paddlefish for the 2014-2015 egg harvest season. The
final Rules can be viewed at www.mdwfp.com under MDWFP
Information for Paddlefish Permits