Taking of Live Aquatic Bait Prohibited from the James River in North Dakota

Anglers and bait vendors should be aware of a regulation that prohibits taking of minnows or other aquatic bait from portions of Pipestem Creek and the James River.

Fred Ryckman, North Dakota Game and Fish Department aquatic nuisance species coordinator, said record high flows in the James River last year facilitated the movement of silver carp upstream into North Dakota. “With this discovery, it is illegal to take live bait from all of Pipestem Creek below Pipestem Dam, and from the James River between the Jamestown Dam and the South Dakota border, including any tributaries up to the first vehicular bridge or crossing,” Ryckman said.

The 2012-14 fishing proclamation states “no live bait may be taken from any water body in North Dakota that is infested with aquatic nuisance species.” Silver carp is an ANS that can out-compete native and other game fish in large river systems.

“Bait transfer is one of the many pathways where ANS can be moved from water body to water body,” Ryckman added. “Elimination of this potential movement of ANS will provide protection of the state’s fisheries and other aquatic resources.”

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