Noodlin' Around With the State's Law Banning the Practice of Catfishin' With Yer Bare Hands

Categories: Politics
BradyKnowlton.jpg
Brady Knowlton and one of his pals, from his Facebook page
It's a big day for 30-year-old SMU grad Brady Knowlton, who graces the front page of this morning's Wall Street Journal -- and, now, Gawker. All because Knowlton, a Dallas oilman and new dad and world-traveling big-game hunter (per his Facebook page), likes to stick his arm into dark, wet holes and yank out catfish. Which is to say, he's a noodler -- a term familiar to anyone who's ever seen Brad Beesley's terrific doc on the subject, Okie Noodling, which bears the tagline, "No Worms, No Wimps, No Worries." Knowlton's a bare-handed catfisherman. Nothing wrong with that.

Well, actually ...

Noodling's illegal in Texas. Because, you see, it's not "sporting." There are only 17 states in which it's permitted at present, OK among 'em. Knowlton's trying to change that by getting a bill pushed through the state Lege that would allow it. But he's running up against folks who wanna keep it prohibited, if only to protect the local catfish population -- which one Texas State University biologist says ain't in no danger of being decimated by bare-handed fishin'.
To some in Texas, the ban on noodling is a sign of government run amok.

Gary Elkins, a Republican state lawmaker who represents part of Houston and sponsored Mr. Knowlton's bill in the house, says the state should have no role in telling noodlers how to go about catching their prey.

That does not mean he has any desire to try their methods, he says: "I'm not sticking my hand in a fish's mouth."
Read the whole thing here.

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11 comments
sick of corruption
sick of corruption

I also heard about the guy that stuck his arm in murky water and was bitten by some kind of something - - probably a snake.  His arm was swollen and black for weeks and then was pretty much weak and useless.  Score one for the fish - zero for the idiot. 

Rooster
Rooster

Out of all the f'ing bills our state legislature has to discuss, we're REALLY going to debate whether or not someone can  "Stick his arm into dark wet holes and pull out catfish"?

I can't help but think this state has more pressing issues...you know...like education, roads, etc...

LaceyB
LaceyB

I still think that the first paragraph is one of the funniest written this year. "Sticking his arm into dark wet holes and pulling out catfish". I sent that email while driving through the mountains, bc there was not enough internet to get disqus. Still worth sayin, even this late. Almost spit out my diet pepsi. And I don't spit, as a general rule. 

Mister_Mean
Mister_Mean

Has anyone lost a finger or a hand in this practice?    If so it seems kind of self regulating. 

Lakewooder
Lakewooder

We can run 5 miles of trot-line across any given body of water... but we (I use that word loosely) can't spend hours searching for (and wrastlin') one fish out of his hidey-hole? Huh? 

Noodle
Noodle

What's not sporting about noodling? Maybe if people had to stalk and kill deer with their bare hands rather than getting in a tree blind with an assault rifle, they'd be less apt to do it. Same theory with catfish hunting.

OldManJam
OldManJam

 The sequel to the first movie, "Noodle 2:Electric Boogaloo" is the bomb

cactusflinthead
cactusflinthead

Why not let them have noodling? If the populations are sufficient enough to withstand some increased fishing, so be it. I doubt there will be so many noodlers that it will impact the overall population with any significant impact. Yeah, sure why not let them be idiots. Whether it actually makes it out of the Lege is another question, scheduling and all. 

Davy Crockett
Davy Crockett

 My uncle was doing it in Oklahoma and pulled his hand out of the water with a water moccasin attached to his forearm.

Heywood U Buzzoff
Heywood U Buzzoff

 The argument from the article is that these noodlers are pulling the catfish from their nests or burrows, king of like hunting birds from their nests.  Of course with more people noodling, more will drown and that will just make Schutze whine about how hard it is for him to canoe with all those corpses in the way and how they make the Caltrava bridges look even worse than they are.

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