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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.

Releasing Fish

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Harvesting and eating a freshly caught fish is part of the angling experience. However, catch and release fishing can also be enjoyable. Starting in 2014, the Fish & Wildlife Department has added several stretches of catch & release fishing throughout Vermont, which are listed in General Requirements & Prohibitions. When releasing fish, it is important to follow these steps to ensure the fish will survive to fight another day:

  • Land a fish as rapidly as possible, because a fish played gently for too long may be too exhausted to recover.
  • Keep the fish in the water as much as possible and gently restrain the fish to minimize violent thrashing while unhooking it.
  • Remove hooks gently and never rip the hook out; use the “hook shake” method. Reach into the fish’s mouth and grasp the hook shank with fingers or pliers. Lift the fish and rotate the hook shank down and shake gently, allowing the fish to slide off the hook.
  • Barbless hooks can increase the survival of released fish, particularly when fishing with bait. Barbs can be pinched flat with pliers.
  • Cut the line close to the hook on a fish that is hooked in the gills, throat or stomach and leave the hook on. The hook will rust off the fish within a few days.
  • When fishing with live bait, watch the line continuously and set the hook as soon as possible to reduce the chances of the fish swallowing the bait.
  • When ice fishing, keep the fish in the water while unhooking it if possible to avoid exposing it to freezing air. This will prevent the fish’s eyes and gills from freezing.
  • Before releasing an exhausted fish, cradle it in a swimming position and move it gently back and forth to force fresh water through its gills until the fish is able to maintain an upright position on its own. This could take up to 10 minutes for large, exhausted fish.


Atlantic salmon live in the Connecticut River and its tributaries. Your cooperation is essential for their survival. Know the difference between trout and salmon. Young salmon (parr) resemble brown trout. Familiarize yourself with the difference. Most parr rarely exceed 6 inches in length. Violations of the law governing Atlantic salmon may result in a $500 fine.

Vermont Fishing Access Areas
Now Searchable on the Web

Planning a fishing or boating trip in Vermont just got easier. Vermont Fish & Wildlife has developed a website to help boaters find access points to lakes and rivers for fishing and other recreation.

You can learn directions to access areas and what fish species may be caught. You can also search to locate access areas within a county or on a body of water, and you can select areas with docks.

All Vermont Fish & Wildlife fishing access areas are provided free to the public for angling and boat access. Of the
department’s 176 fishing access areas, 134 have a ramp for launching boats. Those without ramps provide carry-in boat access or shore fishing.

Learn more and check for details at


Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

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