New York State Fishing Resources - NYCM Insurance Blog

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Jun 16, 2023

New York State Fishing Resources

No matter where you are in New York State, there is usually a great fishing spot nearby. Use these tips to make sure you are getting the most out of your next fishing trip and all of the resources New York State has to offer .

Make sure your fishing license is up-to-date

Like most states, New York requires most residents to obtain a fishing license before you begin fishing. According to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), anyone sixteen years or older must must have a fishing license for:

      Freshwater fish species by angling, spearing, hooking, longbow and tip-ups.

      Frog species by spearing, catching with the hands or by use of a club or hook.

      Freshwater baitfish for personal use.

The NYS DEC states that you do not need a license if you are:

      Fishing on a licensed fishing preserve

      Fishing during the free fishing weekend

      Fishing at a free fishing clinic

      A resident landowner primarily engaged in farming (including lessees and members of their immediate families) when fishing on farm lands they are occupying and cultivating.

      A farm fish pond license holder (including members of their immediate families) fishing on waters covered by the license.

      A Native American living and fishing on reservation land.

      A patient residing at a qualifying U.S. Veterans Administration hospital or facility in New York State.

You can purchase a fishing license from most sporting stores, by phone or on the New York State DEC website. License prices vary based on how long they are valid for. License validity ranges from one day to a full lifetime. Before making your purchase, check to see if you qualify for any discounts!

Take advantage of free fishing weekends

A few times every year, New York promotes its abundant fishing spots by opening them up for free to the public--even those who have not purchased a fishing license. Although fishing licenses are not required during free fishing weekends, all other New York State fishing laws and regulations still apply.

Free fishing weekends are also open to people who are not New York State residents, so feel free to bring along your friends or family from out of state. Visit the NYS DEC website for the full schedule and further information.

Download the HuntFishNY Mobile App

The New York State DEC has an official Mobile App called HuntFishNY full of plenty of resources, including fishing access points, a digital copy of your fishing license, and more! Be sure to download and use this resource before your next trip.

Attend free fishing clinics

In addition to free fishing weekends, New York State also promotes fishing by hosting free clinics across the state. These free fishing clinics do not require attendees to have a fishing license to participate. The goal of these clinics is to educate people about fish identification, fishing equipment and techniques, fisheries management, angling ethics and aquatic ecology. Attending a clinic is a great way to fish for free while learning about nature and the surrounding ecosystem in New York State!

Specific dates and locations for these clinics can be found on the New York State DEC website.

Whether you are a seasoned fisherman or just heading out on your first fishing adventure, these tips will help you to make sure you are using New York State's resources to their fullest.