Outdoors blog

Does Idaho require a license to bowhunt for fish?

Bow hunter with carp bagged while archery fishing.
Bow hunter with carp bagged while archery fishing.

BOWHUNTING -- During the hot summer months, archers often turn their attention to carp and other legal targets.  This is called archery fishing, and certain rules apply, according to the Idaho Fish and Game Department's "Ask a conservation officer" series: 

Q: Do I need an archery permit to bow-fish?

A: No. Archery permits are only required for hunting in archery-only seasons. But a valid Idaho fishing license is required to fish with a bow. Fishing with a bow and arrow, crossbow, spear or mechanical device, excluding firearms, is permitted only in the taking of bullfrogs and unprotected nongame fish – such as carp and suckers – and only in those waters during the season set for the taking of game fish. See the 2013-2015 Fishing Seasons and Rules brochure – Page 50 for archery fishing and Page 52 for the definition of nongame fish.


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Rich Landers
Rich Landers writes and photographs stories for a wide range of outdoors coverage, including a Sunday feature section and a Thursday column. He also writes the Outdoors Blog.

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