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The 2014 New Jersey Freshwater Fishing Guide is now available!
To view the new guide, please download the pdf. Check back in the coming days as we work to put up the new 2014 website.

Below is content from the 2013 guide.

Fishing Seasons

Brought to you by:

Open season
(All Dates Inclusive)

Daily Creel

minimum Length1

TROUT2

Lakes, ponds, major rivers 3, 5, 6

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31

3

Housatonic River 4

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31

1

20″

All other rivers and brooks

Apr. 1 – Sept. 10
Sept. 11 – Mar. 31, 2015

8
3

LAKE TROUT

Wachusett Reservoir 6

(see note 6)

3

Quabbin 6

(see note 6)

2

18″

SALMON (landlocked)

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31

2

15″

SALMON (broodstock)7

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31

2

15″

AMERICAN SHAD 8 (Connecticut and Merrimack rivers and their tributaries)

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31

3

AMERICAN SHAD 8 (All other waters)

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31

0 (C&R only)

CHAIN PICKEREL

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31

5

15″

BLACK BASS (Largemouth and Smallmouth, singly or combined):

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31

5

12″

NORTHERN PIKE

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31

1

28″

TIGER MUSKIE (Muskellunge)

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31

1

28″

WALLEYE

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31

5

14″

SMELT9

Jan. 1 – Feb. 28
May 16 – Dec. 31

ALL OTHER FRESHWATER SPECIES

Jan. 1 – Dec. 31

STRIPED BASS and HERRING: For season, size, and possession limits call the Division of Marine Fisheries at (617) 626-1520, or visit their website at www.mass.gov/marinefisheries.

POSSESSION OF: Sturgeon (all species), American Brook Lamprey, Atlantic (sea-run) Salmon7, Bridle Shiner, Burbot, Eastern Silvery Minnow, Lake Chub, Longnose Sucker, and Northern Redbelly Dace is illegal! If caught, release immediately. This means remove hook or cut line and return fish to water immediately— do not pose for photographs, place on a stringer, hold in a net, or delay in any way the immediate return and release of these rare fish to the water!

  1. Minimum length is measured as the straight line (not curved over the body) from the tip of the snout to the tip of the tail. The tips of any forked tail may be squeezed together for the final measurement.
  2. Trout applies to Brook, Brown, Rainbow, and Tiger Trout (a cross between a female brown and a male brook trout). From Apr. 1 to Sept. 10, no more than 8 trout (as defined) may be taken daily, and only 3 of those trout may be from lakes, ponds, or major rivers3. From Sept. 11 to Mar. 31, no more than 3 trout (as defined) may be taken daily.
  3. Major Rivers: Childs, Coonamessett, Deerfield, Farmington, Green (Colrain), Green (Great Barrington), Ipswich, Jones, Mashpee, Millers, Nissitissit, North (Colrain), North (West Branch), Parker, Quaboag, Quinapoxet, Quinebaug, Seven Mile, Santuit, Scorton Creek, Shawsheen, Squannacook, Stillwater (Sterling, Princeton), Swift (East Branch), Swift (Winsor Dam to Ware River, except as posted), Tully (East and West Branches), Ware, Ware (East Branch), Westfield (all branches).
  4. Mainstem Housatonic only, from the confluence of the East and West Branches to the MA–CT line, exclusive of the catch-and-release areas where no trout may be kept.
  5. Special Brown Trout water: South Pond (Quacumquasit), Brookfield. Total daily creel is 3 trout but only 1 may be a brown trout and it must be at least 15″.
  6. Quabbin and Wachusett Reservoirs: Opening and closing dates are set by the Department of Conservation and Recreation. For Quabbin Reservoir visitwww.mass.gov/eea/agencies/dcr/massparks/region-central/quabbin-reservoir.htmlor call (413) 323-7221. For Wachusett / Sudbury Reservoirs visit www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/dcr/water-res-protection/watershed-mgmt/wachusett-and-sudbury-reservoir-fishing-guide.html or call (508) 792-7806. Quabbin Reservoir and its tributary streams within the Quabbin Reservation are closed to all fishing except during the open season as set by the Department of Conservation and Recreation. The Wachusett/Sudbury/West Waushacum fishing season normally opens the first Saturday in April and closes Nov. 30, but the DCR/DWSP may alter those dates depending on ice conditions. At Wachusett Reservoir, shoreline fishing only is allowed from Gate 6 on Route 70 to Gate 36 on Route 110.
  7. The harvest of broodstock salmon (Atlantic salmon) is lawful in all inland waters of Massachusetts except in: the Connecticut River and all its tributaries; and the Merrimack River downstream of the Essex Dam and all its tributaries downstream of the Essex Dam in Lawrence, MA. Only Atlantic salmon marked with a floy tag below the dorsal fin (see example in picture) may be harvested in the Merrimack River upstream of the Essex Dam in Lawrence, MA and all of its tributaries upstream of the Essex Dam. The possession of Atlantic salmon (including broodstock salmon) while fishing in the Connecticut River and all of its tributaries, and in the Merrimack River downstream of the Essex Dam and all its tributaries downstream of the Essex Dam in Lawrence, MA, is prohibited. The possession of Atlantic salmon (including broodstock salmon) without a floy tag below the dorsal fin while fishing in the Merrimack River upstream of the Essex Dam in Lawrence, MA is prohibited.
  8. American Shad are Catch-and-Release ONLY on all waters except the Connecticut and Merrimack rivers and their tributaries.
  9. Smelt may be taken by hook and line only.

Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

Return to the eregulations.com home page
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JF Griffin Media
J.F. Griffin Media reaches 9,000,000 sportsmen every year through our print and digital publications. We produce 30 hunting and fishing regulation guides for 15 state agencies. For advertising information, please visit: www.jfgriffin.com