Recreational and Commercial Fishing Regulations Available for Download

Did you know that you can download state fishing regulations to your smartphone or other device? Using iBooks on Apple devices or your favorite book reader on the Android platform, you can download the regulations booklets for reference at any time.

sport fishing regulation booklet coverAs noted in the 2018-2019 Saltwater Sport Fishing Regulations booklet, recreational fishermen will want to take note of a few changes in fishing regulations this season.

Most notably, the recreational red abalone fishery is closed for 2018, and likely longer. To learn more about the reasons behind the unprecedented closure, see Perfect Storm” Decimates Northern California Kelp Forests, written by California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) biologists and published on the Marine Management News blogsite.

For those of you who closely watch the sport fishing regulatory process each year, 2018 marks the beginning of automatic conformance of ocean salmon and Pacific halibut state fishing regulations to federal regulations, eliminating the need for the state Fish and Game Commission to also adopt these regulations each year.

commercial digest coverCommercial fishermen also have a few regulation changes to note.

Requirements for transferring Nearshore Fishery Permits have changed, and Deeper Nearshore Fishery Permits have now become transferable.

A new season closure to protect spawning aggregations of warty sea cucumber has been established from March 1 through June 14 each year.

A new Sea Urchin Dive Permit draw system will be in effect for the 2018-2019 season, aimed at reducing the number of permits while also favoring applicants that have been in the drawing system the longest.

Finally, an updated Best Practices Guide to Minimize Whale Entanglement Risk has been developed to highlight voluntary actions fishermen can take to reduce whale entanglements, especially with Dungeness crab fishing gear.

The 2018-2019 Sport Fishing Regulations Supplement is produced in May each year after federal regulators finalize salmon seasons. For saltwater anglers, the supplement contains the year’s ocean salmon fishing seasons and regulations, and the updated Pacific Halibut regulations.

The supplement also includes information about any regulations that have changed since publication of the annual freshwater and saltwater sport fishing regulation booklets earlier in the year. For 2018, the supplement includes a notice that the daily bag and possession limit for canary rockfish has changed from one fish to two fish as part of the RCG Complex aggregate bag limit of 10 fish.

The supplement also includes freshwater sport fishing regulations for salmon, trout, and steelhead in the Central Valley and Klamath River Basin.

Both commercial and recreational regulation booklets are available for download from the CDFW website. Printed regulation booklets are also available wherever sport fishing licenses are sold and at your local CDFW office.


post by Mary Patyten, CDFW Research Writer
post updated June 15, 2018