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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.

Lakes & Ponds: General Rules

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Species

Season

Bag Limits/Min. Lengths

Important Notes

Black Bass

(Smallmouth Bass &
Largemouth Bass)

Ice-out to May 14 and
June 16 to June 30

2 fish daily limit; no length limit.

May 15 to June 15

Catch and release only.

Artificial lures and flies only.

July 1 to ice-in

5 fish daily limit; no length limit.

Ice-in to ice-out

2 fish daily limit; only 1 fish >16 inches

See exceptions for Clement Pond/Joe Silvia Lake, Grassy Pond, Gregg Lake, and Warren Lake.

Brook Trout, Brown Trout, Rainbow Trout and their hybrids

Open water
(ice-out to ice-in)

5 fish or 5 pounds daily limit, whichever is reached first; no length limit.

Many waterbodies with trout have special rules—see Lakes & Ponds: General and Special Rules. Designated trout ponds and fly-fishing-only ponds open Apr. 23 and close Oct. 15. Lake Trout and Salmon Lakes are closed to taking trout from Oct. 1 to Dec. 31.

Through the ice

2 fish daily limit; no length limit.

Designated trout ponds are closed to ice fishing.

Lake Trout

Jan. 1 to Sept. 30

2 fish daily limit. Minimum length 18 inches. Daily bag limit for lake trout and salmon is 2 fish (2 lake trout, 2 salmon, or 1 of each).

See Lake Trout and Salmon Lake rules.

Stinson Lake (Rumney) and Tarleton Lake (Piermont) are General Rules Waters that have lake trout.

Landlocked Salmon

April 1 to Sept. 30

2 fish daily limit. Minimum length 15 inches. Daily bag limit for lake trout and salmon is 2 fish (2 lake trout, 2 salmon, or 1 of each).

Most waterbodies with landlocked salmon are designated as Lake Trout and/or Salmon Lakes; see Lakes & Ponds: General and Special Rules. Taking landlocked salmon from Oct. 1 through March 31 is prohibited.

Pickerel

No closed season.

10 fish daily limit; no length or weight limits.

See illustration.

Northern Pike

No closed season.

1 fish daily limit; minimum length 28 inches.

See illustration.

Walleye

No closed season.

2 fish daily limit; minimum length 18 inches; no weight limit.

White & Yellow Perch, Black Crappie, Sunfish, Horned Pout

No closed season.

25 fish each species daily limit; no more than 50 fish total combined; no length or weight limits.

Rock Bass

No closed season.

No daily limits; no length or weight limits.

Carp

No closed season.

10 fish daily limit; no length or weight limits.

In addition to angling and ice fishing, carp may be taken by bow and arrow with a cord attached from the Merrimack River and Mascoma Lake.

Cusk

No closed season.

No daily limits; no length or weight limits.

See Ice Fishing.

American Shad

No closed season.

2 fish daily limit; no length or weight limits.

Shad (Whitefish)

No closed season.

2 fish daily limit; no length or weight limits.

Smelt

For smelt angling rules and waterbodies open to the taking of this species by dip net, see Freshwater Smelt.

Suckers

No closed season for angling, ice fishing or traps.

No daily limits; no length or weight limits.

Suckers may be taken for personal use with two traps, not more than 50 inches long, 30 inches wide, with an opening no smaller than 3½ inches in diameter.
All traps or holding boxes will have the name and address of the owner.

March 1 to May 31

No daily limits; no length or weight limits.

Suckers may be taken by hand dip nets not over 18 inches in diameter, drop nets not over 48 inches in diameter, spears or bow and arrow with cord attached. Suckers taken by spear or bow and arrow must not be left in, or adjacent to, the body of water.

Water Supply Reservoirs

The waters listed at right are partially or wholly closed to fishing because they are public water supply reservoirs. Contact NHDES Drinking Water and Groundwater Bureau (603-271-7061) for more details.

Babbidge Reservoir (Roxbury), Bradley Lake (Andover), Canaan Street Lake (Canaan), Hanover Reservoirs (Hanover), Gilman Pond (Unity), Massabesic Lake (Manchester/Auburn), Rochester Reservoirs (Rochester/Strafford), Round Pond (Barrington), Upper Beech Pond (Wolfeboro), Woodward Pond (Roxbury)

Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

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