DNR arrests 4 Iowans for catching catfish by hand

Wildlife officials seized 174 pounds of fish

Channel Catfish
Channel Catfish

SELMA, Iowa (AP) Wildlife officials have seized 174 pounds of catfish fillets from the home of a 28-year-old Iowan who was arrested with three others for illegally fishing by hand.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources said Sunday the men were arrested by conservation officers after they were seen using specially-modified bathtubs to attract and hold large flathead catfish on the Des Moines River near Selma.

The agency said the men caught the fish by hand and hook while they were laying and guarding eggs, an illegal fishing practice known as hand-fishing or "noodling." The men range from 28 to 49 and live in southeastern Iowa.

Officers seized three catfish ranging from 12 to 27 pounds, a 14-foot boat, and the fillets during the arrest.

The men are due in court next month.

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