Governor Edwards Could Make Catfish Noodling Legal in Louisiana
Catfish. Pound for pound in my opinion the most delicious and ugliest fish that humans harvest for food. While I am a huge fan of seeing a golden fried and steaming catfish filet swimming in tartar sauce on my plate. I care nothing about looking into the eyes of one of those whiskered freak fish while I am attempting to get him off my hook. But apparently, hooks will no longer be needed for "catfishing" in Louisiana.
Well, hooks won't be needed if Governor John Bel Edwards signs a bill that is sitting on his desk right now. That bill, when combined with the Governor's signature would make catfish noodling legal in Louisiana. If you're not familiar with catfish noodling just watch this video.
That's how you noodle a catfish and quite frankly I am surprised that it's not already legal in Louisiana. In fact, it's against the law in a lot of places. Only Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Wisconsin allow for the legal taking of catfish via noodling.
The sponsor of the legislation in Louisiana is Representative Jack McFarland. I have to admit, I agree totally with the way Mr McFarland thinks on the subject of noodling. He told the Louisiana Radio Network .
This is a legal method for taking catfish. if you’re brave enough to go in the water and put your hand in a hole, then yes. You can noodle a catfish
For me, the emphasis is on "if you're brave enough to put your hand in a hole". I would no more stick my hand inside a hole in the bayou than I would stick my hand in the teeth of a buzz saw. I don't care how big the fish might be, the snake that's in that hole might be a larger concern. But then, I think of those filets on a plate.
Now just to be clear McFarland's legislation, if signed, will mean it is not illegal to noodle catfish. The Governor can sign the bill or just let it become law without his signature. From what we understand Governor Edwards is not looking to veto the legislation so it's a matter of whether he wants to sign it or just let the Constitutional process take over.
So, if you've been noodling catfish in Louisiana then technically you were breaking the law. Here are a couple more of those laws you're probably breaking too.