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|DEC Announces Black Bass Fishing Season Opens June 20
June 11, 2020 04:00 p.m.
DEC Announces Black Bass Fishing Season Opens June 20
Opportunities Abound for New York's Most Popular Freshwater Sportfish
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner
(DEC) Basil Seggos announced today that the traditional harvest season for
Largemouth and Smallmouth bass opens on June 20 and closes Nov. 30. In most
waters, there is also a catch and release season starting on Dec. 1, and
continuing until the start of the regular season, during which anglers can fish for
bass using artificial lures. There are special fishing regulations for some waters,
and York anglers should check the current fishing regulations guide before
heading out to fish.
"New York provides some of the best bass fishing in the country, including the St.
Lawrence River, which in 2019 was named the top bass 'lake' in the country by
Bassmaster Magazine," Commissioner Seggos said. "As New Yorkers start
heading outdoors for the summer season after months of staying home to
prevent the spread of COVID-19, there's nothing better than spending time with
family and friends on the water pursuing these exciting sportfish while still
recreating responsibly and practicing social distancing."
Black bass are New York's number one freshwater sportfish because they are
aggressive, typically abundant, and are found in waters throughout New York.
Big bass can be caught in small neighborhood ponds, warmwater rivers and
streams, and lakes of all sizes.
Often overlooked and underutilized by anglers, New York's inland rivers and
streams can provide exceptional bass fishing. Some of the state's most well-
known black bass rivers include the St. Lawrence, Susquehanna, Hudson,
Seneca, Allegheny, Chemung, Mohawk, Schoharie and Raquette rivers, but
there are many others throughout the state that provide great opportunities. A
recent study by DEC found that Smallmouth bass populations in a number of
rivers and streams managed under a 10-inch minimum size limit had similar
growth and size structures as populations in lakes, ponds, and other rivers
managed under the statewide 12-inch minimum size limit.
Anglers are reminded that fishing for black bass (including catch and release) is
prohibited outside of the open season in Jefferson, St. Lawrence, Hamilton, and
Franklin counties. In these counties, black bass open season is June 20 - Nov.
During the State's ongoing response to COVID-19, DEC reminds anglers to
maintain safe social distancing while fishing (PDF) to help stop the spread of the
coronavirus. Guidelines include: