Last call for comments on proposed fishing regs

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Time is quickly winding down for the Feb. 6 public comment deadline regarding a series of freshwater fishing regulation changes that could affect nearly every angler in this state. To get caught up, consider going back and reading the front page of each of past three editions – Jan. 28, Jan. 14 and Dec. 24 – of New York Outdoor News, where we do our best to provide informative coverage.

But we can’t cover it all, and to really get up to speed it is highly suggested you visit a page on DEC’s website (https://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/124258.html) that fully describes the proposals and the rational behind them.

Again, these proposals, if realized will affect so many anglers as they would allow for ice fishing on nearly every body of water, except special brook trout waters, including those in nine Adirondack counties.

And speaking of brook trout, there’s a multitude of potential realities regarding that species which could trickle into the management of lakes and ponds that also harbor brown and/or rainbow trout. Add some potential lake trout and salmon regs to the mix as well, which however, DEC is rethinking.

If you like bass, pike, walleye or muskie fishing, the opening dates for their seasons could possibly change to what is known as a “hard” date. Instead of the third Saturday in June being the bass opener, it would be June 15, annually, as well as May 1 for walleyes, pickerel, northern pike and tiger muskies, and June 1 for muskies.

Credit DEC with trying to simplify things for themselves and anglers alike. DEC fisheries staff will tell you they are asked for things to be simplified on a regular basis. They’ll also tell that these proposals are just that, and not written in stone.

We’ve heard all kinds of opinions on these proposals and will surely be following the progress in future editions of NYODN.

Lastly, DEC really wants to hear from you, pro or con. You can comment simply by emailing regulations.fish@dec.ny.gov  including “Fishing Regulations Proposal Comments” in your subject line.

Meanwhile, ice is on the ponds and don’t forget that New York’s first free fishing days of the year are Feb. 19 and 20.

Categories: Blog Content, Dan Ladd

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