Attention Anglers: Live Crayfish regulations changed March 1, 2014
Effective March 1, 2014, the sale of one crayfish species, the virile (or northern) crayfish (Orconectes virilis), will be allowed for use as live fish bait in Missouri. However, live virile crayfish may NOT be imported into the state.
The best bait or lure depends on what kind of fish you want to catch and where. Read our Rigging your Pole page to research the kinds of fish you’re after and the bait and lures they are attracted to.
Browse live-bait dealers who sell only approved species that help Missouri anglers avoid spreading harmful aquatics, such as rusty crayfish and invasive carp minnows. Visit Don’t Spread Crayfish and Invasive Carp Control below to learn more about how these invasive species hurt your fishing prospects.
If you collect live bait yourself, make sure to visit Live Bait Regulations below, and always collect bait in the area where you are fishing. When you’re ready to go home, be sure to throw unused live bait in the trash so your favorite fishing waters stay healthy and productive.
Are you a Missouri bait dealer, but don't see your name or business listed? Please register with MDC. If you have questions or concerns, please call 573-522-4115, extension 3158 or email email@example.com
Number of registered live bait dealers: 130