Arkansas waives fishing license requirements during extended spring break

Around Arkansas

VOLANT, PA – APRIL 17: Sarah Tierno, 7, catches her first-ever trout with help from her father, Gary Tierno, on the Neshannock Creek April 17, 2004 near Volant, Pennsylvania. The Tiernos were among thousands of anglers across Pennsylvania to cast their lines on Saturday, the first day of trout fishing season. (Photo by Mark Stahl/Getty Images)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission announced Thursday that it will waive all fishing license and trout permit requirements in the state, starting Saturday, March 21 until midnight on Sunday, March 29, in response to school closures.

“Anglers have always practiced a type of ‘social distancing’,” said AGFC Director Pat Fitts. “We just call it ‘going fishing.’”

Only the license requirement has been waived, except for those whose fishing privileges are currently suspended. All other fishing regulations, including daily limits and length restrictions by species, will remain in place.

“Hopefully, it will provide some relief to the full-blown anxiety that everyone is feeling,” said Andrew Parker, vice-chairman of AGFC. “It does heed the call the governor has made to go outside, keep social distance, but go outside and enjoy the outdoors. Fresh air does everybody good.”

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission says it’s currently one of the best times of the year to fish in the Natural State, with white bass, walleye and crappie moving shallow to spawn where they can be targeted by anglers. Largemouth bass are also beginning their annual spawning cycle.

In cooperation with Governor Asa Hutchinson, the AGFC voted in favor of the waiver during a specially-called meeting on Thursday.

A video of the meeting is available on the AGFC’s YouTube Page.

A list of brochures, including fish recipes and the AGFC’s Beginners Fishing Guide, is available at

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