PRATT – Anglers will soon pay less for daily fishing licenses in Kansas, beginning Jan. 1, 2021. On Nov. 19, the Kansas Wildlife, Parks and Tourism Commission voted to decrease the daily license fee from $8.50 to $6 for Kansas residents and from $14.50 to $10 for non-residents. Prices were lowered in hopes of attracting additional novice and casual anglers.
Also beginning Jan. 1, 2021, Kansas youth 15 and younger can purchase a new youth trout permit for $7 – half of the adult permit price – which will allow youth to keep five trout in select waters. Currently, youth can trout fish for free but only keep two trout.
Other items of note addressed during the Nov. 19 meeting:
In an effort to offset maintenance costs, while taking into account nearby privately owned rental options, Commissioners approved raising daily rates at cabins at Mined Land Wildlife Area and Atchison State Fishing lake from $70 a night to $107. Fees at these cabins had not been raised in some time, causing the cabins to no longer be profitable. The $37 increase is expected to keep the cabins open and accessible to the public.
Commissioners heard feedback and engaged in discussions regarding the use of large caliber air guns for big game hunting, the Firestick ignition system for muzzleloaders and use of “blaze pink” as acceptable safety apparel during firearms deer seasons. Commissioners took no action on approving any of the aforementioned options. However, KDWPT staff will further investigate the use of smoothbore handguns for turkey hunting.
2021-2022 Deer Seasons
Levi Jaster, KDWPT big game program coordinator, briefed meeting attendees on proposed season dates for the 2021-2022 deer seasons, which are slated to look similar to the current year’s season structure. Commissioners will vote on the proposed season structure during their March 25 public hearing.
Free Fishing Days, Park Entrance
By Secretary’s Resolution, KDWPT will offer free entrance to Kansas state parks and free fishing on June 5 and 6, 2021. On these dates, all residents and visitors of Kansas may fish without a valid fishing license; all public lands, equipment, length and creel restrictions still apply.
The next KDWPT Commission meeting, scheduled for Jan. 14, 2021, will be held virtually. For instructions on how to participate, visit https://ksoutdoors.com/KDWPT-Info/Commission/Instructions-to-Participate-in-Virtual-Meeting.