COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio Wildlife Council received a proposal to allow a maximum of three lines while fishing statewide during its regularly scheduled meeting on Wednesday, July 13, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife. If approved by the Ohio Wildlife Council, the proposed rule change would take effect on Jan. 1, 2023.
If approved, Wednesday’s proposal would align statewide rod and reel regulations with those already in place for the Lake Erie Sport Fishing District, Ohio River fishing units, and Pymatuning Lake by increasing the limit to three lines. This change was proposed to streamline fishing regulations.
An additional proposal would remove site-specific catfish regulations for Hoover Reservoir and align the popular fishing destination with statewide rules. Currently, regulations for Hoover Reservoir protect all catfish between 18 and 28 inches, with a 4-fish split daily limit. Statewide catfish regulations limit an angler to one blue catfish 35 inches or longer and one channel catfish 28 inches or longer, with no restrictions on shorter fish.
Division of Wildlife research shows that Hoover Reservoir meets angler and agency expectations. Removing special regulations would improve fish growth, reduce the time for fish to reach trophy lengths, and simplify harvest regulations by returning them to statewide rules.
Additionally, the Ohio Wildlife Council received a proposal that would specify that an annual shooting range permit would expire one year from the date of issue. Under current regulations, an annual shooting range permit, required of those 18 and older to shoot on Division of Wildlife Class A, B, and C ranges, expires on the last day of February each year.
Further proposals received by the Ohio Wildlife Council include:
- Remove the size limit on crappie in the Mahoning River downstream of the Lake Milton dam.
- Extend camping dates in Woodbury Wildlife Area to include the Friday before Memorial Day to be sure to include the wild turkey hunting season.
- Update the descriptions and boundaries of the restricted migratory bird hunting zone in Muddy Creek Bay so that it can be located using readily available modern technology.
- Amend fishing regulations so float line restrictions apply only to state owned or controlled waters.
A complete list of proposals is available at wildohio.gov. Additional information on current regulations can be found in the latest hunting and trapping or fishing booklets.
The Ohio Wildlife Council is an eight-member board that approves all Division of Wildlife proposed rules and regulations. Meetings are held virtually and are open to the public. Individuals interested in providing comments are asked to register by calling (614) 265-6304 at least two days prior to the meeting. All comments are required to be three minutes or less.
The mission of the Division of Wildlife is to conserve and improve fish and wildlife resources and their habitats for sustainable use and appreciation by all. Visit wildohio.gov to find out more.