Vermont Fishing Law

Are you an avid angler or a novice looking to explore the fishing opportunities in Vermont? It’s essential to familiarize yourself with the fishing laws and regulations in the state to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. This comprehensive guide will provide you with all the information you need to know about fishing in Vermont.

Vermont Fishing law - Girl fishing from jetty by a lake at sunset stock photo

Key Takeaways:

  • Vermont fishing law encompasses various regulations and guidelines that anglers must adhere to in order to protect fish populations and maintain the state’s natural resources.
  • Fishing regulations in Vermont include catch limits, restrictions on certain species or fishing methods, and specific rules for different water bodies.
  • Vermont has designated fishing seasons for different fish species, and anglers need to be aware of these seasons to fish legally.
  • Obtaining a fishing permit or license is required for fishing in Vermont’s waters, and there are different options available depending on age, residency, and duration of fishing.
  • Participating in free fishing days can be a great opportunity to try out fishing without needing a permit.

Fishing Regulations in Vermont

When it comes to fishing in Vermont, it’s important to be aware of the specific fishing regulations in place. These regulations, such as fishing limits, restrictions, and guidelines, are designed to ensure the sustainability and conservation of the state’s fish populations and waterways.

Fishing Limits

Understanding the fishing limits set by Vermont fishing law is essential for responsible angling. These limits define the maximum number of fish you can catch and keep within a given period. By respecting these limits, you help maintain healthy fish populations and preserve the natural balance of Vermont’s rivers, lakes, and streams.

To find out the current fishing limits for different fish species in Vermont, consult the official Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department’s website or refer to the Vermont fishing regulations guidebook.

Fishing Restrictions and Guidelines

Alongside fishing limits, there may be additional restrictions and guidelines that anglers need to follow in Vermont. These regulations aim to protect certain fish species during specific seasons, promote responsible fishing practices, and prevent overfishing in sensitive areas.

Some common fishing restrictions and guidelines in Vermont include:

  • Prohibited fishing methods, such as using dynamite, poisons, or chemicals
  • Closed fishing seasons for certain species during their spawning period
  • Designated catch-and-release areas where fish must be released unharmed
  • Special gear restrictions, such as size limits for nets, hooks, or lures
  • Restrictions on the sale or transportation of certain fish species

It is crucial to familiarize yourself with these fishing restrictions and guidelines before heading out on your angling adventures in Vermont. By doing so, you can help protect the natural beauty and biodiversity of the state’s waterways.

For a comprehensive list of fishing restrictions and guidelines, refer to the official Vermont fishing regulations guidebook or visit the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department’s website.

Overall Vermont Fishing Law

Understanding the overall Vermont Fishing Law is essential for all anglers. These laws encompass a wide range of topics, including fishing licenses, permits, bag limits, and invasive species prevention measures.

Some key points to keep in mind regarding Vermont Fishing Law include:

  • A valid Vermont fishing license is required for all anglers aged 15 and above
  • Special permits may be needed for specific fishing activities, such as ice fishing or trout stocking
  • Bag limits may vary depending on the fish species and fishing location
  • Anglers are responsible for preventing the introduction and spread of invasive species by properly cleaning and draining their fishing equipment

To ensure you comply with Vermont fishing law, make sure to check the official Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department’s website or consult the fishing regulations guidebook for the most up-to-date information.

Vermont Fishing - a girl fishing in a boat

Fishing Seasons and Permits in Vermont

One of the joys of fishing in Vermont is the variety of fishing seasons available to anglers. Each season provides a unique opportunity to target different fish species and explore various fishing areas across the state. To fully enjoy these fishing seasons, it’s important to obtain the necessary permits and licenses.

Fishing Seasons in Vermont

Vermont offers fishing seasons for a range of fish species, allowing anglers to pursue their favorite catches throughout the year. Some popular fishing seasons in Vermont include:

  • Bass Fishing Season: Open year-round, with peak times in spring and fall.
  • Trout Fishing Season: Divided into several categories, including general trout season, catch-and-release season, and trophy trout season.
  • Salmon Fishing Season: Open during specific times of the year, typically in the fall.
  • Panfish Fishing Season: Open year-round, with excellent opportunities for sunfish, perch, and crappie.

These fishing seasons provide anglers with ample opportunities to explore Vermont’s beautiful lakes, rivers, and streams while targeting their preferred fish species.

Fishing Permits and Licenses

To fish in Vermont, anglers must obtain a fishing license or permit, depending on their age and residency status. The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department offers both resident and non-resident licenses to individuals of all ages.

Permit TypeResidencyAge RequirementCost
Fishing LicenseVermont Resident15 and older$26 – $56
Fishing LicenseNon-ResidentNot Applicable$56 – $96
One-Day Fishing LicenseVermont ResidentNot Applicable$12
One-Day Fishing LicenseNon-ResidentNot Applicable$12

In addition to the standard fishing licenses, Vermont also offers free fishing days, where anyone can fish without a license. These days are a great opportunity for newcomers to try fishing and for experienced anglers to introduce their friends and family to the sport.

Suggested Fishing Areas and Districts

Vermont is blessed with numerous fishing areas and districts that offer exceptional angling experiences. Some popular suggestions for fishing locations in Vermont include:

  • Lake Champlain Basin: Known for its diverse fish species, including bass, salmon, and trout.
  • Connecticut River: Home to a variety of freshwater fish, such as walleye, pike, and catfish.
  • Green Mountain Ponds: Offering peaceful settings and abundant panfish opportunities.
  • Brook Trout Streams: Ideal for those seeking the thrill of catching native brook trout.

These fishing areas and districts provide anglers with a range of options to suit their preferences, ensuring an enjoyable and fruitful fishing experience.


In conclusion, this article has provided anglers in the United States with a comprehensive guide to Vermont’s Fishing Law. The in-depth coverage of fishing regulations, seasons, and permits ensures that both seasoned anglers and beginners can navigate the state’s waters with confidence and compliance. Additionally, anglers need to be aware of the involvement of the Vermont State Police, New Jersey, and New Hampshire, as well as the significance of law enforcement and wardens in maintaining fishing regulations. By following these guidelines, anglers can contribute to the preservation of fish populations in Vermont waters and support the overall health of the state’s aquatic ecosystem.

By understanding and following these laws, anglers can enjoy the diverse fishing opportunities in Vermont’s lakes, rivers, and streams. Moreover, their adherence to fishing limits, restrictions, and guidelines contributes to the conservation and preservation of the state’s fish populations and natural resources.

Whether you’re casting your line for trout, bass, or other popular species, it’s important to stay informed about Vermont Fishing Law before heading out on your angling adventure. With this guide, you can fully immerse yourself in the beauty of Vermont’s waterways and create unforgettable fishing memories while respecting the state’s regulations.


What are the fishing regulations in Vermont?

The Vermont fishing law is enforced by the Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife. These regulations, established to ensure the preservation of fish populations and the sustainability of the state’s waterways, specify catch limits, size restrictions, and other guidelines that anglers must adhere to while fishing in Vermont’s waters.

What are the fishing seasons in Vermont?

Vermont has different fishing seasons for various fish species. Some species, like trout, have specific open seasons, while others may have year-round open seasons. It is important to consult the Vermont fishing regulations for exact dates and any restrictions that may apply to specific species or bodies of water.

Do I need a fishing permit in Vermont?

Yes, anglers in Vermont need a fishing permit. To legally fish in Vermont’s waters, you must obtain a fishing license. The license is available for both residents and non-residents and can be purchased online or at authorized license agents throughout the state. It is important to have a valid fishing permit while fishing to avoid penalties or fines.

Are there any fishing limits in Vermont?

Yes, Vermont has fishing limits in place to ensure the sustainable use of its fish populations. The fishing limits specify the maximum number of fish you can harvest or possess during a fishing trip. These limits may vary depending on the fish species, the body of water, or the specific regulations for each season. It is essential to check the fishing regulations to know the current fishing limits in Vermont.

What are the fishing restrictions in Vermont?

Vermont has fishing restrictions to protect specific fish populations, sensitive habitats, and the ecosystem. These restrictions may include catch-and-release requirements, closed areas or seasons, and the use of only certain fishing methods or lures. It is crucial to be aware of these restrictions to ensure responsible fishing practices and the protection of Vermont’s waterways. The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department, along with wardens from the Vermont State Police, enforce these regulations to maintain the integrity of the state’s fishing resources.

One such area where restrictions are in place is the Black River in Vermont. There are regulations set for fishing in this river to preserve the fish population and maintain the ecosystem’s balance. It is essential to familiarize yourself with the specific fishing rules and limits for the Black River to comply with the state’s laws.

Similarly, fishing in North Carolina requires adherence to certain rules and regulations. Whether you are a resident or a visitor, it’s important to know the fishing laws in North Carolina and obtain the necessary permits or licenses. These regulations help in conserving the fish population and ensuring sustainable fishing practices.

When fishing in Vermont waters, it is essential to understand and follow the fishing regulations specific to the area you are in. Each water body may have different rules and restrictions to protect its unique ecosystem and fish species. Additionally, if you plan to fish in neighboring states like New Hampshire or South Carolina, be sure to familiarize yourself with their fishing regulations as well.

As a responsible hunter and angler, you must protect and preserve the fish population. Adhering to fishing regulations helps in maintaining healthy fish stocks and ensures a sustainable environment for future generations of outdoor enthusiasts. Compliance with regulations like catch limits, size restrictions, and fishing seasons is crucial to support the long-term health and abundance of fish species such as salmon and lake trout.

Residents of South Burlington and other Vermont towns should be aware of the fishing regulations specific to their area. Local restrictions may apply, so it’s important to consult the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department or local fishing authorities for the most up-to-date information.

During the fishing season, which typically spans from around spring to fall, it is especially important to be mindful of the regulations and guidelines set forth by the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department. These regulations may include restrictions on the number of fish you can catch, the types of bait and lures you can use, and the areas where fishing is permitted.

Whether you are fishing in the White River, the Missisquoi River, or the Lamoille River, it is crucial to follow the established fishing regulations. These rules are in place to protect the fish populations and their habitats, ensuring the sustainability of these waterways for future generations of anglers. By respecting the fishing seasons, size limits, and catch-and-release practices, you contribute to the overall conservation efforts and the preservation of Vermont’s natural resources.

Where can I find the fishing guidelines in Vermont?

The fishing guidelines in Vermont are outlined in the state’s fishing laws and regulations, commonly referred to as Vermont fishing law. The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department is responsible for enforcing and implementing these laws to ensure the conservation and sustainable management of the state’s fish population and aquatic resources. Anglers must familiarize themselves with Vermont fishing law to comply with the regulations and contribute to the preservation of Vermont’s natural beauty and wildlife. The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department provides a comprehensive guide to fishing laws and regulations on its official website, where anglers can find detailed information on various fishing activities, including open water fishing, ice fishing, and specific rules for different water bodies such as Lake Champlain, Connecticut River, Winooski River, and many more. 

Anglers can also obtain a copy of the Vermont fishing law regulations booklet from authorized license agents or download it directly from the department’s website. By adhering to Vermont fishing law, anglers can enjoy their fishing experiences while actively participating in the conservation efforts of Vermont’s fish and wildlife resources.

How can I obtain a fishing license in Vermont?

To obtain a fishing license in Vermont, you can visit the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department’s website or purchase one from authorized license agents throughout the state, including those in New York State, as well as neighboring jurisdictions like New Jersey and New Hampshire. It’s important to comply with the general fishing regulations set by the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department and other regulatory bodies, including those governing open water fishing. These regulations may include restrictions on fish species, fishing methods, bag limits, and size limits. Keep in mind that using artificial lure is often permitted and encouraged as a sustainable fishing practice.

When fishing in Vermont, it’s essential to be aware of the wildlife service and law enforcement agencies, such as the Vermont State Police and wardens, who ensure compliance with the fishing regulations. These regulations are in place to protect the fish populations, maintain the health of Vermont waters, and promote responsible angling. Additionally, it’s worth noting that fishing regulations can vary across different regions in the United States, so it’s important to familiarize yourself with the specific regulations in the area where you plan to fish. Whether you’re a resident or a visitor, acquiring a fishing license demonstrates your commitment to preserving the natural resources and aquatic habitats in Vermont and across North America.

Are there any free fishing days in Vermont?

Yes, Vermont offers free fishing days where anglers can fish without a Vermont fishing law. These designated days, typically organized by the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department, encourage people to experience fishing and the outdoors. It allows newcomers to try fishing without the need for a fishing license. Dates for free fishing days are usually announced by the department and can be found on their website or through local fishing organizations.

Additional Resources:

1. Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department

2. Specific fish populations –

3. Vermont has different fishing seasons  –

4. Vermont fishing season – Fishing limits set by Vermont –

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