New Fishing Restrictions-River Closures and Hoot Owl July 2021 – Fins and Feathers Bozeman
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New Fishing Restrictions-River Closures and Hoot Owl July 2021

New River Restrictions

The current heatwave we are experiencing requires new fishing regulations on many Southwest Montana rivers. Low flows and warm temps negatively affect fish health and angling pressure can further decrease the likelihood of fish surviving during hot water temps. Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks (FWP) released a new update regarding fish closures that go into effect as of July 21, 2021.

FWP Update

The restrictions include what are commonly known as “hoot owl” restrictions, which means fishing is closed from 2 p.m. to midnight each day. Some waters are under full fishing closures, which prohibit fishing at all times of day. These closures and restrictions will stay in effect until conditions improve.

The following closure went into effect today:

• A full fishing closure for portions of the Shields River from the confluence with Yellowstone River to USFS Crandal Creek Bridge.

These closures go into effect, Wednesday, July 21, at 12:01 a.m.:

• A full fishing closure for portions of the Big Hole River from the confluence with the Beaverhead River to Tony Schoonen Fishing Access Site.

• A full fishing closure for portions of the Gallatin River from the mouth to Hwy 84 Crossing.

• A full fishing closure for the entire Jefferson River.

These restrictions go into effect, Wednesday, July 21, at 2 p.m.:

• Hoot owl restrictions for the entire reach of the Madison River from the mouth to the boundary with Yellowstone National Park.

• Hoot owl restrictions for portions of the Beaverhead River from the mouth to State Highway 91 South.

• Hoot owl restrictions for portions of the Missouri River from Town of Cascade Boat Ramp to Holter Dam.

• Hoot owl restrictions for portions of the Stillwater River from the confluence with Yellowstone River to Absaroka Fishing Access Site.

• Hoot owl restrictions for portions of the Yellowstone River Hwy 212 Bridge in Laurel to Yellowstone National Park boundary.

Reminder

Further information, guidelines, and updates can be found on FWP’s website. Remember to respect the health of the fish during this heatwave, bring a net, fish at the coolest times of the day, quickly land and release fish, and check the temperatures before heading out for the day. Don’t be afraid to broaden your target species and fish for carp, bluegill, bass, and pike that are able to withstand high water temperatures. Tight lines!