New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos today announced the upcoming start of the spring trout fishing season, which offers excellent fishing opportunities in line statewide thanks to the state’s extensive stocking program and extensive wild trout fishing.
DEC’s spring trout stocking begins in March and ends in early June, and includes over 1.8 million stocked trout in waters across the state.
“Fishing in New York State is a highly anticipated, world-class experience that brings seasoned and amateur anglers to our waters in every corner of the state each spring,” Seggos said.
“DEC’s extensive statewide stocking efforts are certain to complement our existing healthy fisheries and make the upcoming harvest season a success.”
For decades April 1st was the traditional “opening day” of the trout fishing season. This year, the date marks the opening of the trout harvesting season, as year-round fishing has been made available on most rivers with the introduction of a catch season and relaunched from October 16 to March 31.
DEC stocking trucks have already started hitting the roads and trout stocking is in full swing with 1,872,105 catchable brown, rainbow and speckled trout stocked in ponds and streams across the state this spring. .
Stocked-reach streams (listed in the Trout Streams section of the rules guide) will receive fish every two weeks for two months to improve the chances of angler success throughout the season.
Most streams will also receive stocking of larger trout. Spring trout stocking lists, including trout stream stocking week, can be viewed on the DEC website.
Additionally, the DEC recognizes that some fisheries depend on stocked fish to grow to a certain size before they can be harvested. Visit the DEC website to find the locations where these stockings of brook trout, lake trout and Atlantic salmon are taking place.
New fishing regulations
The DEC recently announced new freshwater fishing regulations that will come into effect on April 1.
Following a public comment period on the draft proposals earlier this year, the new regulations reflect the input and support of the angling community in DEC’s efforts to make fishing in New York waters less complicated.
Of particular interest to trout anglers is a new statewide regulation for rainbow trout, brown trout and splake. The regulations create consistency with inland trout regulations and expand year-round fishing opportunities. A full compilation of the changes and an assessment of public comments associated with the development of the regulations can be found on the DEC website.
New Trout Stream signage
As part of DEC’s efforts to make fishing more enjoyable, DEC has posted “Management Category” signs on most of the state’s 1,500 miles of public fishing rights.
The management categories make a clear distinction between wild trout management (wild, wild quality, first wild) and stocked trout management (stocked, stocked-extended) – more details can be found on the DEC.
These signs indicate not only the management category of a particular stretch of waterway, but also the regulations associated with the stretch.
Anglers are advised to look for the white and green signs with a trout when fishing trout streams with public fishing rights.
Trout fishing opportunities
Last year, DEC launched an interactive trout fishing map to provide anglers with a one-stop-shop for information on stocking, fishing access, season dates and regulations on DECinfo Locator. .
Anglers will be able to see trout stream reaches color coded by management category and fishing access associated with those reaches. These layers will allow trout anglers to plan their trips and find their favorite trout fishing experiences.
The Trout Stream fishing map and a user’s guide are available on the DEC website. Anglers are encouraged to consult this valuable resource when planning their next fishing trip.
Guide to freshwater fishing regulations
The new guide with recently adopted regulatory changes is posted on the DEC website. Hard copies of the guide are being produced and the guides should be available from licensing agents by the second week of April.
Hard copies can also be requested by emailing [email protected] In 2021, CED removed advertisements and articles from the annual guide to fishing regulations to make it easier to use. This approach and larger print size continues this year, along with other improvements to make finding regulations easier.
Measuring 5 ½ x 8 ½ inches, the new guide allows anglers to keep a copy in their glove box or tackle box.