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DEC Announces Adoption of New Freshwater Fishing Regulations – Blue Water Fish

DEC Announces Adoption of New Freshwater Fishing Regulations

Streamlined Rule Changes to Take Effect on Apr. 1

2022 Freshwater Fishing Regulations Guide Available Soon

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos today announced the adoption of new freshwater fishing regulations that will take effect on April 1, 2022. Following a public comment period on the draft proposals earlier this year, the new regulations reflect the input received and the support of the angling community in DEC's efforts to make fishing New York's waters less complicated and easier to understand.

"The new regulations adopted today coupled with the reformatted Freshwater Fishing Regulations Guide reflect DEC's sustained commitment to ensuring the enjoyment of both novice and expert anglers in New York State by making fishing easy and accessible," Commissioner Seggos said. "Amendments to freshwater fishing regulations provide greater consistency and significantly reduce special regulations while still maintaining protective measures to sustain the health of the State's fisheries."

DEC is implementing changes to reduce the number of special regulations while still providing the protections necessary to ensure sustainable fisheries, including changing some statewide regulations for certain species and eliminating special regulations that are no longer necessary. Some of the new statewide regulations were already broadly applied via special regulations. Some special regulations are still necessary, particularly for waters that require unique management strategies to achieve desired fisheries outcomes, but DEC has significantly reduced the number of special regulations. Additional changes include opening the season for all sportfish on a hard date and allowing ice fishing in waters inhabited by trout in most of the state.

DEC also adopted more conservative harvest regulations for sunfish to protect populations from overharvest and increased the minimum size limit for crappie to 10 inches to improve the stability and size structure of populations. DEC also placed experimental regulations on 11 waters to determine if larger sunfish can be produced under a 15-fish-per-day harvest limit and an eight-inch minimum size limit.

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