Statewide General Fishing Laws

fishing laws book cover

General Fishing Laws for Inland Waters

A valid fishing license is required. See License Requirements and Fees.

Terminal Gear

North Zone

Use or possession of live fish as bait is PROHIBITED. The use of all other legal forms of bait (including worms and dead baitfish/smelts), artificial lures, and artificial flies is PERMITTED.

South Zone

Use of all legal forms of bait (including live baitfish/smelts), artificial lures, and artificial flies is PERMITTED.

Seasons

Lakes & Ponds Rivers, Streams, Brooks
North Zone
(See Map)

From April 1 to September 30: Open to open water fishing.

From October 1 to March 31: Closed to all fishing.

North and South Zones

From April 1 to August 15: Open to open water fishing.

From August 16 to September 30: Open to open water fishing using artificial lures or flies only. General law length and bag limits apply, except daily bag limit one landlocked salmon and one brook trout.

From October 1 to March 31: Closed to all fishing.

South Zone
(See Map)
January 1 to December 31: Open to ice and open water fishing

General Law Daily Bag, Possession and Length Limits

The daily bag, possession and minimum length limits in the table below apply to all inland waters open to fishing.

Species Daily Bag & Possession Limits Length Limit
Lakes/Ponds Rivers, Streams, Brooks Lakes/Ponds Rivers, Streams, Brooks
Brook Trout
(incudes Splake & Artic char)
North Zone: 5 fish
South Zone: 2 fish
5 fish 6 inches minimum 6 inches minimum
BrownTrout 2 fish 2 fish 14 inches minimum 6" min & 25" max
Rainbow Trout 2 fish 2 fish 12 inches minimum 6 inches minimum
Landlocked Salmon 2 fish 2 fish 14 inches minimum 14" min & 25" max
Togue (Lake Trout) 2 fish 2 fish 18 inches minimum 18 inches minimum
Species Daily Bag & Possession Limits Length Limit
Bass
(Largemouth & Smallmouth)
North Zone: Unlimited None
South Zone: 2 fish No minimum length. Only 1 may exceed 14 inches.
Whitefish 3 fish None
Smelts 2 quarts None
Sea-run Atlantic Salmon Federally Endangered Species - No Fishing Permitted for this Species
Inland Species not listed above Unlimited None
Striped Bass, Shad, River Herring, American Eel, Sturgeon See Recreational Angling for Migratory Fish
Inland species not listed above Unlimited None
Map of North and South Regions

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