It’s summertime, and lots of people are out recreating on area waters, including bow-fisherman who are pursuing paddlefish and non-game fish with bows and arrows.
The bow-and-arrow harvest season for paddlefish in the Fort Peck Dredge Cuts runs from July 1 to Aug. 31, and rapidly warming water temperatures are drawing archery enthusiasts from all around. That’s why it’s important for archery anglers to know about the ways to properly dispose of the fish they shoot.
If archers do not plan on taking fish home, they should be sure they’re in deep water and well away from boat ramps, docks and swimming areas before popping the balloon-like air bladder and letting the discarded fish sink to the bottom.
Bow-fishers are encouraged not to dispose of fish in areas that will create problems for other recreationists.
“The worst case is when fish are disposed of and left to rot near the boat ramp,” said Steve Dalbey, Montana, Fish, Wildlife & Parks’ Region 6 Fisheries Program Manager. “Fish that are shot and are still floating will eventually wash up on shore and potentially create a smelly mess that someone else has to deal with."
Dalbey said this is the busiest time of the year on our area waters, and there are all types of recreationists out enjoying the summer and the sun. In respect to all of these other users, bow-fishers are asked to take the time to properly dispose of their harvested fish and related waste.