These outdated fishing laws seem outrageous, but many of them are still on the books because no one’s bothered to erase them.
Fishing is a great way to relax and enjoy your free time. Grab a pole, your favorite bait, and your fishing license, and usually, you’re good to go. But not so fast!
It is safe to say that most of these fishing regulations would not be enforced by authorities or have been changed by recent governments—but they were in place at one time. Make sure you aren’t breaking any of these absurd and unusual fishing laws when you make that first cast.
1. Excuse Me, Ladies
In Montana, if you are an unmarried woman, you cannot fish alone. And if you are married, you can not fish alone on a Sunday. My advice? Move.
In Oregon, it is against the law to use canned corn for bait while fishing. Corn for lunch it is!
3. Leave the Camel at Home
Unfortunately for all you camel owners, you must leave your camel at home if you plan on fishing in Idaho. Idaho does not allow fishing from a camel’s back. But the other 49 states… you’re golden!
4. No Lasso for You
Lassos are for cows, not fish. By Tennessee law, it is illegal to catch a fish with a lasso. If you are a cowboy, I’m sorry. I’m sure you are furious. Hooks only, please.
5. Knitting No-No
It is illegal for men to knit during fishing season dates in New Jersey. Can I make my own law? If so, I’d like to make knitting during any fishing season illegal! You should have better things to do, like fish.
6. Giraffe… Seriously
In Illinois, it’s forbidden to fish while sitting on a giraffe’s neck. Wish I had known this before I bought my pet giraffe. Nonsense.
7. Uh-Oh Ohio
I have a feeling this law is broken on the daily: it is illegal to get a fish drunk in Ohio. Shame on you, Ohio.
8. Sleepy Heads
The windy city is not a fan of pajama pants. In Chicago, Illinois, it is illegal to fish in your pajamas. Just stay in bed. Boating in pajamas, on the other hand…
9. Gun Shy
Wyoming really knows how to put a damper on fun. It is strictly forbidden to shoot fish with a firearm.
Wait, you thought I bought this gun for hunting? No, I’m going bass fishing!
10. Free Willy
Another one from Ohio: Sundays are for the Lord, not whales. If you are fishing for whales on a Sunday in Ohio, you will be punished… but you should be safe, since there are none there. If they were, we’d have one major invasive species situation on our hands!
As mentioned earlier, these laws are most likely not enforced or have been changed over time, whether you’re freshwater fishing or saltwater fishing. One thing is certain, though: these are all absurd fishing laws!