NYS Fishing License: Everything You Need to Know

nys fishing license

Fishing has been a popular recreational activity for centuries. It provides hours of enjoyment, challenge, and relaxation. New York State is a paradise for anglers with its abundance of lakes, rivers and streams. To fish in NYS you will need a fishing permit. This comprehensive guide will cover everything you need about getting a NYS fishing licence.

What is a NYS Fishing License?

A NYS fishing permit is a permit that is issued by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. It allows an angler the ability to fish in any of New York’s water bodies. The license can be used for saltwater or freshwater fishing. The license allows anglers to participate in other activities such as clamming and crabbing.

Who needs a NYS fishing license?

Anyone 16 years old or older who wants to fish recreationally in NYS must have a NYS fishing licence. Residents and non-residents are both eligible. However, those with disabilities, military personnel and seniors over 70 years old may be eligible for reduced-cost licenses.

Types of NYS fishing licenses

NYS issues a variety of fishing licenses including:

1. Annual Fishing License

This license allows the angler to fish in all of NYS for one year starting on the date of purchase. The annual fishing license can be further divided into two categories. Non-resident annual fishing license: For anyone who is not a resident of NYS but wants to fish within the state.

2. Short-Term Fishing Licence

This license is valid to fish within 7 days of the date of purchase or for 30 days. This license is perfect for anglers that want to fish for a short time in NYS.

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3. Lifetime Fishing License

This is a lifetime license that allows you to fish in NYS. This license is only available to NYS residents.

4. Resort Fishing License

This license is granted to the resort owner or manager and allows their guests to fish in the resort’s private fishing waters.

How to get a NYS fishing license?

It is easy to obtain an NYS fishing permit, either in person or online. Follow these steps to get your license:

1. Online Application

Create an account on the DECALS site to apply online. Follow the instructions on the screen to enter the required information. Be sure to have an email address that is valid, a printer and a method of payment.

2. In Person Application

To apply in person, you can visit any NYS DEC office or licensed agent, including tackle shops and sporting goods stores. You must provide the necessary information and pay the required fees.

How much does an NYS fishing license cost?

The cost of a NYS fishing permit varies depending on its type and duration. The following are the prices for each license.

1. Annual Fishing License

Resident Annual Fishery License: $25

2. Short-Term Fishing Licence

a. a. 30-day Fishing Licence: $28

3. Lifetime Fishing License

Senior Lifetime Fishing Licence: $65 Senior Lifetime License: $65

When should you renew your NYS fishing license?

A NYS fishing permit is valid for a year from the date purchased. You must renew your license each year to continue fishing. You can renew online or in person. Renewals usually end on December 31st each year.

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What are the rules and regulations for fishing in NYS?

Anglers must follow certain rules and regulations to ensure sustainable fishing in NYS and protect aquatic resources. These include:

1. Size and Catch Limits

NYS has specific daily and size limits for certain fish species. These limits must be adhered to while fishing.

2. Seasons and Hours for Fishing

During which seasons can certain fish species be caught? The DEC publishes a fishing guide every year that specifies fishing hours and seasons. Anglers are required to follow these rules in order to avoid breaking the law.

3. Bait and lures

Live fish is not permitted in NYS except for non-native species. Anglers are required to use artificial flies or preserved fish for bait.

4. Report Recreational Fishing

Anglers must report all recreational fishing activities to DEC. This helps the agency monitor fishing activities and take necessary measures to protect aquatic resources.

What are the Penalties of Fishing Without a License

Fishing without a NYS fishing licence is a violation of state fishing laws and regulations. The severity of the crime determines the penalties for fishing without an NYS fishing license. As an example: A first offense is punishable by a fine between $50 and $250. b. A second offense is punishable by a fine between $250 and $500 or up to 15 days of imprisonment. Third-time offenses are punishable by a fine between $500 and $1,000 or up to 15 days in prison.


Anyone who wants to fish within NYS must have a NYS fishing permit. The licenses are available in different types and durations. The process to obtain one is simple. Anglers are required to follow the rules and regulations established by the DEC in order to ensure sustainable fishing, and preserve aquatic resources. Remember to renew your fishing license annually and report all recreational fishing activities.

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