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How to legally capture alligators in Mississippi

Alligator
Photo courtesy of the MDWFP

We’re just 10 days out from Mississippi’s fall alligator hunting season and the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks (MDWFP) is informing permit holders how to legally capture the giant reptiles.

The public water hunting period will be from Friday, August 25 to Monday, September 4. The date is extended to Monday, September 18 for those hunting on private land.

According to Andrew Arnett, the MDWFP’s new alligator program coordinator, the state allows hunters to use four different capturing methods — bow fishing equipment, snatch hooks, harpoons, or snares — when trapping one of the creatures.

“With that bow fishing equipment, you have to use bow fishing-style tips, and it has to be attached to some type of line and buoy,” Arnett said on SuperTalk Outdoors with Ricky Mathews. “You can’t use regular broadheads or any explosive-type tips. If you stick an alligator with bow fishing equipment, that particular alligator has to be reduced to the bag limit. You cannot release those.”

Permit holders may harvest two alligators over four feet long, only one of which may exceed seven feet long. The bag limit restrictions are intended to distribute harvest among adults and juvenile alligators.

Private lands alligator hunting opportunities are offered in 36 counties. Properties in the open counties must contain a minimum of 20 acres of privately owned permanent surface water to qualify for an alligator harvest voucher. Additional vouchers are issued for each additional 100 acres of privately owned permanent surface water.

More information on alligator hunting in Mississippi can be found here.

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