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New York

Fishing

Definitions

Angling means taking fish by hook and line. This includes bait and fly fishing, casting, trolling, and the use of landing nets to complete the catch. Snatching, lifting, hooking, and use of tip-ups are not angling.

Artificial lures or bait means artificial imitations of natural bait, man-made flies, spinners, spoons, plugs, jigs, and other lures, including those that may contain some natural substances such as deer hair and feathers.

Artificial fly means a hook with no more than two points dressed with feathers, hair, thread, tinsel, or any similar material to which no additional hooks, spinners, spoons, or similar devices have been added.

Black bass means both largemouth and smallmouth bass.

Blind snatching means the taking of fish by snatching when the fish is not visible to the angler.

Catch and Release means catching and immediately releasing the caught fish without harm. Chumming means depositing in the water any substance, not attached to a hook, which may attract fish.

Closed season means the time during which fish may not legally be taken. View more on closed season restrictions.

Fishing means the taking, killing, netting, capturing, or withdrawal of fish by any means. This includes every attempt to take fish, plus assisting another person in taking or attempting to take fish.

Foul-hooked means not hooked in the mouth.

Hook gap means the distance from the shank to the point of the hook.

Ice fishing means fishing through the ice on frozen waters.

Ice-fishing line means any device used for fishing through the ice, including but not limited to hand line, tip-up, tip down, etc.

Inland trout streams shall mean all rivers and streams inhabited by trout except as follows:

  • Great Lakes tributaries to the 1st impassible barrier
  • Finger Lakes tributaries to the 1st impassible barrier
  • Lake Champlain tributaries to the 1st impassible barrier
  • Tidal stream reaches

View the Inland Trout Stream Fishing Regulations for more information.

Marine and coastal district includes waters of the Atlantic Ocean within 3 miles of the coastline and all other tidal waters, including the Hudson River upstream to the Mario M. Cuomo Bridge.

Minimum length means the greatest possible length measured from the tip of the fish's snout to the tip of the tail. The mouth may be open or closed and the tail may be spread or compressed in order to achieve the greatest length.

Natural bait means all baits which entice or might be ingested or swallowed by fish including, but not limited to, fish (dead or alive), fish eggs, worms, shellfish, crustacea, amphibians (frogs and toads), insects (including all stages of development such as larvae, pupae, etc.), pork rinds, liver, meat, corn or other vegetable matter, tapioca, candy, cheese, bread and putty or dough-like scented baits.

Night means ½ hour after sunset to ½ hour before sunrise.

Non-offset (in-line) circle hook means a fishing hook designed and manufactured so that the point and barb of the hook are not offset from the plane of the shank and bend, and the point is turned perpendicularly back towards the shank to form a circular or oval shape.

  • Non-offset (inline) circle hooks must be used when recreationally fishing for striped bass or when using baitfish. Exemption: Circle hooks are not required when fishing with an artificial lure, whether or not they are tipped with bait.

Open season means the time during which fish may be legally taken. Snatching means taking fish not attracted by bait or artificial lure with hooks, gangs or similar devices whether or not baited. Snagging, lifting, and single hook snagging are types of snatching.

Spearfishing or "spear" means taking a fish with a hand-propelled single or multiple pronged pike, blade or harpoon. It does not include the mechanically propelled device commonly called a spear gun.

Sunfish means bluegill, pumpkinseed and redbreast sunfish.

Trout means brook trout, brown trout, rainbow trout, and hybrids of these species including splake.