Festivals & Events

Reeling in the Rules

If you're planning to fish in the scenic streams and lakes of New Brunswick, it's crucial to be well-versed in the New Brunswick fishing regulations. These rules ensure the sustainability of our waterways and the abundance of fish for years to come. Here's what you need to know about the New Brunswick fishing regulations for a lawful and enjoyable experience.


Embrace Fish NB Days 

New Brunswick fishing regulations offer a unique opportunity during the Fish NB Days on June 3-4, 2023, and February 17–19, 2024. On these special days, you're allowed to fish without a license across the province's abundant waterways. Although this provides a fantastic chance to enjoy fishing freely, the regulations stipulate that for certain species like landlocked salmon, a license with tags is still necessary for retention. For non-residents, these days are particularly welcoming as the regulations allow them to fish without the usual requirement of a guide. Yet, all must comply with the existing bag limits and restrictions to protect the fish populations.


Navigating Trout Season 

The trout season, as defined by New Brunswick fishing regulations, spans from May 1 to September 15 for rivers, brooks, and streams, and from May 15 to September 15 for lakes, ponds, and reservoirs. Adhering to the New Brunswick fishing regulations, anglers should observe the daily bag limit of 5 for species such as brook trout, arctic char, brown trout, and rainbow trout. Moreover, size matters in conservation efforts: brook trout must be over 10 cm, with arctic char required to be over 15 cm to maintain healthy fish populations.



Adhering to Atlantic Salmon Season 

The province's fishing regulations mandate specific seasons for Atlantic salmon, differentiated by the salmon type and the particular waterbody. In line with conservation efforts, there's a compulsory release for all Atlantic salmon catches, and anglers must cease fishing once the daily hook and release limit is reached. To minimize harm to the fish, New Brunswick fishing regulations require the use of barbless artificial flies when fishing for Atlantic salmon.


Understanding Non-Sport Fish Rules

Non-sport fish species are governed by their own set of fishing regulations. Species such as burbot, eel, gaspereau, rainbow smelt, shad, striped bass, whitefish, white perch, and yellow perch have specific season dates, bag and possession limits, and size limits. For instance, burbot can be fished from January 1 to December 30, with a daily bag limit of 10, and a minimum size set at 10 cm. These New Brunswick fishing regulations are instrumental in preventing overfishing and ensuring a sustainable ecosystem.


Special Regulations and Tagging Programs

Certain waterbodies are subject to special fishing regulations, including restrictions to fly fishing with a barbless artificial fly. Additional regulations may include no fishing for striped bass during specific hours. These rules are vital for the preservation of fish habitats and populations. The New Brunswick fishing regulations also involve tagging programs for Atlantic salmon and striped bass, which help scientists study fish behavior and population dynamics. Anglers are encouraged to report tagged fish, contributing to the conservation efforts and management of these species.


For anglers seeking more comprehensive information, New Brunswick provides additional resources and web maps through the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada, ensuring everyone is up-to-date with the New Brunswick fishing regulations.