New York’s 2024 Free Fishing Days announced

ALBANY — On Monday, Feb. 5, Gov. Kathy Hochul announced the six designated Free Fishing Days in New York.

The Free Fishing Days will be Feb. 17 to 18, June 29 to 30, Sept. 28 (National Hunting and Fishing Day) and Nov. 11. During these days, the fishing license requirement is waived for freshwater fishing on New York’s waters.

The Free Fishing Days program began in 1991 to give people who might not fish a chance to try the rewarding sport of freshwater fishing at no cost, to introduce people to a new hobby, and to encourage people to support conservation by purchasing a New York state fishing license.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation offers a host of resources for those interested in getting started in fishing. The I FISH NY Beginners’ Guide to Freshwater Fishing provides information on everything from rigging up a fishing rod, to identifying catches and understanding fishing regulations. There’s also a video series on DEC’s YouTube channel that complements the Beginners Guide. DEC’s Places to Fish webpages are a reliable source of information when planning a fishing trip. DEC’s official app, HuntFishNY, now features “The Tackle Box.” Fishing regulations, boating access and stocking information are all available within a map-based interface.

In addition to Free Fishing Days, there are also “learn to fish” opportunities available through DEC-approved free fishing clinics. For a list of what’s currently scheduled visit the DEC website.

Free fishing day participants are reminded that although the requirement for a freshwater fishing license is waived during free fishing days all other fishing regulations remain in effect. Outside of free fishing days, anglers over the age of 16 must have a valid fishing license.

For more information on purchasing a license, visit the DEC website.

Starting at $1.44/week.

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