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What Fish Is In Season In New York

Can You Fish For Trout Year

Trout season kicks off busy time of year for Western New York sport fishing industry

In New York, you can fish for trout year-round, although there are different seasons for the different species and places where you can fish for them. For brown, brook, and rainbow trout and their hybrids, you can only fish from April 1 to October 15 in the Great Lakes, Finger Lakes, and Lake Champlain tributaries, and tidal stream reaches.

For inland trout streams of these species, you can fish all year-round. However, the catch-and-keep season lasts from April 1 to October 15, while October 16 to March 31 is catch-and-release only. For lake trout, the fishing season extends from April 1 to October 15.

New York’s Statewide & Adirondack Fishing Seasons

Please note, new regulations are in effect as of April 1, 2021. Download the NYS Freshwater Fishing Regulations Guide.

There are many species of fish located throughout New York State and the Adirondacks. Certain species of fish can only be taken during their regular fishing seasons. Fishermen and women are responsible for knowing the state regulations, and obtaining a NYS fishing license prior to fishing.

New York State has statewide, general regulations pertaining to each species of fish. There are also specific fishing regulations that are unique to certain bodies of water inside and outside of the Adirondack Park. Check special fishing regulations by NYS County here »

Trout Season Is On In New York

April 1st marks the opening day of trout season in New York. Exceptional opportunities to catch many different species, both wild and stocked, await anglers.

State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos today reminded New Yorkers that trout and salmon fishing season opens on Wednesday, April 1. New Yorks coldwater lakes and streams offer springtime trout anglers the opportunity to pursue trout in a wide array of settings across the state. During the current COVID-19 public health crisis, getting outdoors and connecting with nature while angling in New Yorks waters is a great way to help maintain mental and physical health.

Commissioner Seggos said, Fishing is good for the mind and body. Governor Andrew M. Cuomo continues to invest in ensuring New Yorks renowned fisheries remain healthy and productive. While this winters mild conditions offered ample opportunities for hardcore or novice trout and salmon anglers to pursue their favorite gamefish on waters open to year-round fishing, springtime remains the main event. Water temperatures are rising, causing trout to feed more aggressively, and present a perfect opportunity for anglers. I encourage all anglers, novice and expert, to get outside and fish, but act responsibly by practicing social distancing and staying safe.

Coming to a Water Near You

As a reminder, DECs fish hatcheries are closed to visitors until further notice.

Know Where to Go

Additional information

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Best Fly Fishing Rivers In New York

New Yorks streams and rivers are world-class. Theyll test even the most experienced angler. Youre always going to be humbled when you fish in New York, but as many people understand, the payoff is always worth it.

Delaware River

No trip to New York is complete without a trip to the Delaware. Many professional anglers describe it as the best river in the eastern United States. Its broken into three sections: West, East, and the Main Stem.

The West is the most accessible with pools, riffles, and pocket water. This 20-mile portion is located below the Cannonsville Reservoir.

There are trees surrounding the majority of the banks so be sure to bring waders along to allow you to pick the proper casting lanes.

You can use a 5 or 6-weight rod with a Weight Forward line. Attach a 9-12 foot leader to provide yourself with the most privacy.

Also, March Browns, Tricos and BWOs between 12-16 will all catch fish.

West Canada Creek

West Canada Creek is a phenomenal trout stream in Central New York. It begins in the Adirondacks near Hamilton County and flows into the Mohawk River.

There are multiple sections that anglers target, but the Trophy Section is catch and release only. Its a wonderful introduction into New York fly fishing.

Casting lanes are going to be fairly tight so be sure to pack waders. Along with waders, youll only need or 4 or 5-weight to handle the fish in the creek.

Salmon River

Where To Fish On The Beaverkill:

Tale of Two Seasons: Fluke Fishing the New York Bight ...

For being such a historic river, the access is not as difficult as many rivers in New York. The lower section is going to have more public access.

There is access at the Beaverkill Campground:

Again, here is another map from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. It explains the rules and regulations for traveling along the river. Its a wonderful resource.

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Wiscoy Creek Great Access For The Fly Fisher

Wiscoy Creek starts in Wyoming County and flows 25 miles into the Genesee River. Its a wonderful wild brown trout stream in Western New York. There is about 13 miles of public access and five parking areas. Its one of the most accessible creeks on this list. The river generally has a gravel bottom with riffles and deep pools.

The traditional trout set-up is going to work best. Along with the browns it has wild brook trout. The Wiscoy hasnt been stocked since 1972. The upper portions near Bliss are going to be more narrow water. The middle and lower sections are wider. Try dead drifting a Bugger or nymphing with a midge. The different types of water make it an eventful day.

More information on the Wiscoy click on the below map to see the PDF that the State of New York provides.

GUIDE RECOMMENDED TIP: Fish in New York see quite a few artificial flies. Theres no escaping that. Be sure youre not overestimating your abilities. Fish to your strengths it can be a frustrating day when youre completely out of your comfort zone.

New York Fishing Regulations

The last step in planning your New York fishing trip is getting familiar with some of the regulations. The first thing youre probably wondering is, how do I get a fishing license in New York?

Youll be happy to know that if youre fishing aboard a charter, your captain will take care of getting one for everyone over the age of 16. If youre fishing on your own, its a little more complicated. First, youll need to determine whether you need a saltwater license or a freshwater license. In some cases, you may need both. For a more in-depth look at license types, check out our comprehensive guide.

If youre fishing aboard a charter, your captain will also make sure youre respecting all regulations related to seasonality, including bagging and size limits. There are closed seasons for many species, in both saltwater and freshwater, so this is very helpful. When heading out on your own, make sure to read up on recent regulations.

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Search Fishing And Related Programs And Leagues

American Veterans Memorial PierBay Ridge Avenue and Shore Road This popular Bay Ridge fishing pier provides anglers with plenty of striped basses as well as a breathtaking view of the Manhattan skyline. Saltwater
Brooklyn Bridge ParkAt the western end Enjoy views of the New York Harbor and Manhattan skyline as you cast your line from Pier 5 into the East River. Visit Brooklyn Bridge Park’s fishing page for more information. Saltwater
Prospect ParkSouth side of the park between Prospect Park SW and St. Paul’s Place Fishermen are attracted to the population of largemouth bass at this tranquil 48-acre lake at Prospect Parks southern tip. It is also home to bluegill and pumpkinseed sunfish, black crappie, and yellow perch.Visit the Prospect Park Alliance’s fishing page for more information. Freshwater
Wnyc Transmitter ParkEnd of Kent Street Visit the former home of WNYCs radio transmission towers and cast your line into the East River from the recreational pier near Kent Street. Freshwater
Fish for bluefish, striped bass, fluke, and weakfish while enjoying views of the Statue of Liberty, Governors Island, Manhattans skyline, Staten Island, and the New York Harbor. Saltwater

For a more comprehensive list of fishing locations and rules in New York, visit the NYS DEC fishing page.

What Fly Fishing Gear To Use On The Beaverkill:


The Beaverkill is a traditional trout stream. Use anything from a 4 to 6 weight rod. Youll want floating line so youre able to get the full dry fly experience. Using 9 and 12 foot leaders with 5 or 6x tippet is going to hide your identity.

Blue Winged Olives, Black Caddis Flies, Blue Quills and Mayflies are going to be your best bet. By June, the terrestrial flies will make their way on to the water so pay close attention.

People love fly fishing New York so the resources are plentiful!

GUIDE RECOMMENDED TIP: New York weather can be unpredictable, but changes in weather can make all the difference in catch rate. Stay on the water longer by having a light packable rain jacket with you.

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Fly Fishing Gear To Use On The Delaware:

This is a trout river so a 5 or 6 weight rod is perfect. Again, match the reel to your rod. Weight Forward Line is the best option. Youll want to swing some streamers through the slower moving water. Use anywhere between a 9-12 foot leader.

Waders are necessary for the Delaware. Youll see seams all over the river that youll want to hit, but the cold water can be uncomfortable to stand in without wader.

New York Fly Fishing Season

Fishing can be done in New York all year long. The lakes will freeze over, but many of the rivers and streams will continue to flow despite the colder temperatures. Its no different than many regions in the United States.

The fish will become more lethargic in the heart of winter, but become more aggressive in the spring and fall.

Fly Fishing in April

The majority of trout fishing in New York is allowed to begin on April 1. The streams are not going to be full of runoff and the fish are willing to eat due to the warming temperatures.

Midge flies are hatching along with Little Black Caddis. Try any of the rivers and streams on the list and youll find fish.

Fly Fishing in May

May is a great time to fly fish in New York. The only thing to be careful of is the runoff from the snow, which has the potential to cloudy the water and raise the levels.

As a result, youll need to use darker flies in Midge, Caddis, and March Brown patterns.

Dont let the cloudier water dissuade you. These fish arent as heavily targeted and are more than willing to eat.

Fly Fishing in June

Fly fishing in New York in June is beautiful. The temperatures arent at their peak and the fish continue to stay hungry. The water clarity continues to improve so be sure you stay hidden.

Lighter leader and tippet is needed during this time of year. BWOs hatch along with the Drake flies.

Fly Fishing in July

Fly Fishing in August

Fly Fishing in September

Fly Fishing in October

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New York State Trout Fishing Season To Open April 1

NEW YORK Trout fishing season will open across New York State this week.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced that trout fishing season in the state will open on Thursday, April 1, 2021. In preparation, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation is stocking 1.8 million catchable trout in waters across the state.

This fishing season is opening following the released of the States new Trout Stream Management Plan. Through this plan, the DEC has grouped stream fishing opportunities into five categories and includes year-round fishing opportunities.

The DEC also launched an interactive Trout Stream Fishing Map to provide a one-stop-shop for information about stocking, fishing access, season dates, and regulations

This year opening day represents the beginning of a new era in trout stream management for New York, said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. After more than two years of committed work with our angling public, DEC will begin implementing the new Trout Stream Management Plan. In addition to new and fewer types of special regulations, we have made significant progress toward achieving our fish production objectives to stock larger yearling fish and seed all stockings with some fish 12 inches or larger. Best of all, anglers can continue to enjoy our trout stream resources through the fall and winter months thanks to the creation of a new catch and release season.

Saranac River Landlocked Salmon

3 Record

The Saranac River is located right near the AuSable and is often overlooked. Located near the Adirondacks, its one of the most beautiful rivers on the list. The upper portion of the river has rainbows and browns. It flows from Bloomingdale to Franklin County. Drive along River Road to find the access points. Go ahead and use a traditional trout setup for these.

The lower Saranac has landlocked salmon and steelhead. Its a great spot to hit in the late fall and winter. If youre fishing this section and targeting the salmon or steelhead, be sure to use nothing lighter than a 7-weight rod. Youll need the power.

Go ahead and use BWOs, Caddis and Stoneflies. Also, in mid-summer, the terrestrials will be active so keep a few in your box. Its a great streamer river so dont be afraid to throw some Wooly Buggers and see what you can get to strike.

There are numerous hydroelectric dams along the river so its an interesting mix of warm and cold water. The wide variety of fish also make this river extremely enticing!

Here is the NYD of Environmental Conservation pamphlet on the Saranac.

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Oak Orchard Creek Fly Fishing For Salmon

The Oak Orchard starts in the Oak Orchard swamps in Genesee County. It empties into Lake Ontario. The Oak holds, brown trout, Coho and Chinook Salmon along with steelhead. This is a major stocking area in the state of New York. Nearly 21,000 rainbow trout, 155,000 chinook salmon and 26,000 coho salmon are released into the Oak Orchard.

The Waterport Dam has a nice public access point. The fish are unable to get past the dam so its a solid spot to start. Go ahead and drift eggs for the brown trout. If youre able to see salmon, fish below them. The brown trout want to eat the eggs from the salmon.

Bring your heavier rig. An 8-10 weight single handed rod is going to be necessary. Youll have the chance to catch some massive fish so dont be shy. If you want to target only trout, go ahead and drift a Wooly Bugger. Theyll give you a great fight!

HERE is more information on the Oak Orchard from the New York Department of Environmental Conservation.

What Ny Anglers Need To Know About New Trout Fishing Regulations That Take Effect April 1

Kyle Lehmuth, caught and released this 23-inch brown trout on opening day last year while fishing Kinderhook Creek in Columbia County. He said he used a minnow pattern streamer.

Anglers getting out for the opening day of the statewide trout fishing on April 1 need to be aware of a new set of fishing regulations in effect for the states inland rivers and streams.

The regulations, the result of several years of the DEC holding meetings and soliciting public comment, are reflected in the states new 10-year, trout stream management plan. They are designed to increase fishing opportunities and cater to a wider range of angler preferences when it comes to trout fishing. In addition, the changes are meant to simplify things, DEC said.

The changes are reflected in the recently released and newly formatted DEC fishing guide, which is available when one purchases their fishing license. The fishing guide is also available online on the DEC website.

Among the biggest changes is the enactment of a year-round catch-and-release regulation for streams across the state. Until now, the regular statewide trout fishing season on most inland waters began April 1 and ended Oct. 15. No longer.

In addition, the changes will have an impact on the DECs stocking practices and daily catch limits and length requirements to keep fish on various waterways.

Kendall LaManche, 9, of Marcellus, caught this brown trout on Ninemile Creek in Onondaga County on opening day last year using a gold Phoebe lure.

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Largemouth And Smallmouth Bass

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass fishing in New York really is some of the best. You have the states incredible lakes to thank for that! What better way to make the most out of your summer vacation than by getting out onto the water and hooking some Bass along the way?

The season for these fish typically starts in the second half of June and runs all the way to the end of November. Youll find both Smallmouth and Largemouth Bass in the same bodies of water, but youll have to look in different areas for each. Smallies prefer cooler and clear waters, choosing to hunt around cover. Largies like their habitats warm, shallow, and murky. Unlike their siblings, theyll be hiding under the cover of rocks and weeds.

Where To Purchase A New York State Fishing License


New York State offers various methods for you to purchase the right fishing license. You can choose among the following for whichever is more convenient for you:

Residents have the option to purchase either an annual fishing license or a term fishing license good for seven days or one day. The annual freshwater fishing license for residents costs $25.00 for anglers aged 16-69 and $5.00 for senior residents, military, and persons with disabilities. The one-day license can be bought by residents for $5.00, while the 7-day license costs $12.

Meanwhile, non-residents can purchase an annual license for $50.00, a 7-day license for $28.00, and a one-day license for only $10.00. Both residents and non-residents can get marine registration for free.

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