Land-based Aquaculture

Catfish ready to be harvested

As of November 1, 2017, responsibility for land-based aquaculture applications has shifted from the Department of Marine Resources to the Department of Agriculture, Conservation & Forestry.

DACF is developing interim guidance for licensing and anticipates formal rule-making as we become more familiar with the aquaculture industry. We suggest filing a license request with our staff, which will be discussed with natural resource agencies as needed to better understand your proposal and identify any natural resource or regulatory concerns.

January 19, 2018: Application Now Available: Land-Based Aquaculture License Application (DOCX)

Please feel free to contact DACF with any questions via: Michele Walsh, Maine State Veterinarian; (207) 287-7615

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Transfer and Importation Permits

It remains illegal to import any aquatic species from beyond Maine’s borders without approval from the appropriate state agency.

Existing cultivation permit holders, producers, and R&D facilities should take note that transfer and importation permit authority has not changed. If you have a need for either type of permit, you should apply directly to the appropriate individuals at the Department of Marine Resources (DMR) or the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (IF&W), as you have in the past.

Marine Species

Freshwater Species

IF&W Stocking and Cultivation Permits

Pond stocking permits and cultivation permits for facilities which primarily produce fish for stocking into fresh surface waters of the State are issued by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.

  • IF&W Cultivation Permits Contact: Todd Langevin,, 287-5262
  • Pond Stocking Contact: Fisheries Division, 287-5261

DMR Aquaculture Leases and Licenses

Leases and licenses for the cultivation of marine species within the public coastal waters of the state remain under the authority of Department of Marine Resources.