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Welcome to the Massachusetts recreational saltwater fishing experience!

Welcome to Massachusetts, home to some of the best saltwater fishing in the country! This recreational guide is produced annually by the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries (MarineFisheries) with the goal of providing you with plenty of information to make your recreational saltwater fishing experience a great one.

The 2015 Saltwater guide provides information about when and where to get onto the water to target whichever species you may be trying to catch. It also provides regulations for the recreational harvest of finfish, lobsters, and crabs, as well as locations where to launch your boat, buy angling supplies (bait and tackle shops), and find licensed captains that operate for-hire vessels to take you out on the water. Need to learn a new knot or rig for your repertoire? We’ve got a few of the most common in here too. And if that isn’t enough for you, there are also several articles highlighting projects aimed at continuing to improve recreational fishing in Massachusetts.

Getting kids outside and teaching them about fishing in saltwater was a big part of the summer of 2014. Check out a great article on MarineFisheriesinaugural youth fishing clinic. The money to fund this clinic came directly from your recreational permit dollars and this was just the start of great things to come in angler education! The public access “small grants” program was also a huge success in its inaugural year and allows for towns or other organizations to apply for up to $10,000 to help fund projects that improve public access for saltwater recreational anglers.

Our mission is to manage the Commonwealth’s living marine resources in balance with the environment resulting in sustainable fisheries. This means that sometimes as an agency, we need to make changes to bag and size limits so that we can properly manage the fish stocks that we all use. Please be sure to check our website before you head out on the water to be sure that you are up to date on any changes to regulations. All of our regulations are subject to change even during a season, so we will always have the current rules available to you.

We keep working to make fishing in the Massachusetts marine environment the best it can be, but you can help too. As responsible anglers, your influence is essential for keeping fish and their environment in good shape. Now get out there and enjoy all that Massachusetts has to offer!

See you on the water!

Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

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