Bowfishing – Fishing For Catfish With Bow And Arrow

I heard a couple guys talking about shooting catfish with a bow and arrow. Is that legal? How is it done?

There are lots of folks who go catfishing with a bow and arrow, and it is called “bowfishing.” In recent years, this has been kind of a controversial issue with various state wildlife departments. Basically, it is permitted on certain rivers in certain states, but it is not legal everywhere. Before you head out to take shots at catfish, or any other fish for that matter, you should check with your local department of fish and wildlife to make sure you won’t get into any trouble. There is a trend lately of states permitting this practice because it doesn’t have a major effect on catfish populations like trotlining and some other methods of fishing do. Basically, bowfishing involves shooting a barbed arrow at fish, which has a line attached to it. Once you strike a fish, the barbs keep the arrow in place, and you reel the fish in using the line. As you can probably imagine, the tackle is all different. The arrows are heavier than regular arrows used for archery. The line and reel has to be extra strong in order to reel in all that weight. This method of fishing requires no bait, and you can do it from the shore. Bowfishing is most popular in certain areas of the deep south and in Texas, where it has been a major issue in the state government. It is also used to catch sharks and other big fish in the ocean.


Dan Eggertsen is a fellow catfish fishing enthusiast to the point of obsession. :) He's been providing solid advice on catfish fishing since 2004.

One Response to “Bowfishing – Fishing For Catfish With Bow And Arrow”

  1. dewayne kimmons says:

    how do you locate the catfish when bowfishing .is it just by luck or is there a technique

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