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Commercial Fishing & Sale of Fish

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Commercial Fishing

  • It is unlawful to fish commercially except in waters opened for commercial fishing by regulation of the DNR Board.
  • It shall be unlawful to engage in commercial freshwater fishing without having a valid commercial fishing license.
  • It is unlawful for any person to sell or purchase any game fish, however American shad, hickory shad, channel catfish, and flathead catfish taken while commercial fishing may be sold as described in the Game and Fish Code.
  • For information on fish baskets, including usage, construction, and licensing contact the nearest Fisheries Section office or visit our website at
  • For a complete copy of the freshwater commercial fishing regulations contact the nearest Fisheries Section office or visit
  • For saltwater commercial fishing information contact the Coastal Resources Division or visit

Sale of Fish & Aquaculture

Game Fish

It is unlawful for any person to sell or purchase any game fish except under the following conditions:

  • See Commercial Fishing above.
  • Game fish may also be sold by properly licensed commercial fish hatcheries, wholesale and retail fish dealers, and pond owners (see following paragraph) who conform to the Game and Fish Code.
  • Game fish may be sold from a pond when the owner has obtained a valid permit from DNR Law Enforcement Section (2 weeks required to process). Note: The permit must be displayed at the pond and the fish must be packaged and labeled for transport from the pond with the permit number and the number and pounds of each species contained in the package. Fish must remain so packaged until processed or released into another pond. Note: A permit will be issued only once annually and limits the time for taking fish from the pond to 15 days.
  • Game fish shipped into Georgia may be lawfully transported, sold, and resold provided each person in possession of said game fish has an authentic bill of sale or lading which details the source of the fish and the species, number and pounds of the fish.

Domestic Fish

  • Aquaculturists (fish farmers) must register with the Department of Natural Resources in order to sell domestic fish.
  • Registration applications are available from any Fisheries Section office, at, or by calling 770-761-3044. Find Aquaculture information under the Fishing Regulation section of the WRD website.
  • Domestic fish are lawfully obtained farmed fish which are held in confinement in private ponds, but only if they are fish species which are either indigenous to Georgia or have been recognized prior to 1992 as having an established population in public waters in Georgia. White perch is not recognized as a domestic fish. Persons in possession of domestic fish from registered aquaculturists must have an authentic bill of sale or lading which identifies the seller, the date of transaction and at least two of the following for each fish species: number, weight, or average length.

Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

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