Snakehead Derby returns to Gunpowder Falls State Park on June 25

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Snakehead Derby returns to Gunpowder Falls State Park on June 25

‘Snakes on the Dundee II’ invites anglers to battle Invader

Entries are judged at the 2021 Snakes on the Dundee fishing derby. Photo by Maryland Department of Natural Resources

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is partnering with the US Fish and Wildlife Service to host its second annual Snakehead Derby at Gunpowder Falls State Park in Baltimore County. Snakes on the Dundee II will take place on June 25 at Dundee Creek Marina.

Anglers of all ages are invited to participate in this free event, which includes fishing lessons, door prizes, filleting demonstration, fish printing activity and cooking techniques. Prizes will be awarded in two age groups, for anglers 17 and under or 18 and over.

The northern snakehead is an invasive fish species native to Asia. Introduced to the Chesapeake Bay watershed in the early 2000s, it has successfully adapted and is now found in Maryland waters. Its ability to thrive in any habitat, its multi-species diet, and its frequent spawning have made it a priority for the MNR to sponsor derbies and other incentives to harvest the fish.

In 2021 Gunpowder Falls hosted the first Snakes on the Dundee, which was attended by over 100 anglers.

“We are proud to offer this free, family-friendly day of fishing and fun at Dundee Creek Marina at Gunpowder Falls State Park,” said Gunpowder Falls State Park Superintendent Mike Browning. “This derby is a great way to share information about this invasive fish, promote its harvest, and learn how to cook this delicious invader.”

Participation in Snakes on the Dundee II is free, but registration is required. Anglers over 16 must have a Maryland Chesapeake Bay and Coast Sport Fishing License participate in the derby. The full program of events can be found on the MNR website.

The ministry encourages anyone who catches a northern snakehead to harvest it and not release it. If the snakehead has a tag, the angler should measure the length, note the exact location of the catch, and call the toll-free number printed on the tag.

More information about snakeheads is available on the MNR website.


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