New Connecticut fishing regulations went into effect Friday, requiring some anglers to purchase a Trout & Salmon Stamp, and extending the Mill River Wild Trout Management Area and making the Mill River Trout Management Area catch and release all year.
Fees from the Trout & Salmon Stamp will go to the DEEP to support fishing activities.
Highlights of the new regulations include:
TROUT & SALMON STAMP – A trout & salmon stamp is required for any angler 16 years of age and older fishing in a Trout Management Area (TMA), Wild Trout Management Area (WTMA), Trout Park, or Atlantic Salmon Broodstock Area; or keeping trout, Kokanee Salmon or broodstock Atlantic Salmon anywhere statewide (some exceptions for waters not stocked by DEEP that are stocked by another entity). The fees for the Trout & Salmon Stamp are $5 for resident anglers who are 18 and older, $3 for CT residents ages 16 or 17 and $5 for nonresident anglers age 16 and older. The trout & Salmon stamp is now available for purchase on the Online Sportsmen’s Licensing system. Click here to read answers to frequently asked questions about the Trout & Salmon Stamp.
MILL RIVER WTMA & MILL RIVER TMA (Easton-Fairfield) – The Mill River WTMA is extended downstream to the Merritt Parkway and the Mill River TMA is now catch-and release year round.
FARMINGTON RIVER TMA – A small portion of the West Branch Farmington River in the Riverton area from the intersection of Hogback Road and Route 20 in Hartland downstream to the gas pipeline crossing approximately four-tenths miles downstream of the confluence with the Still River in Barkhamsted will now be closed to all fishing from April First to 6:00 am on the second Saturday in April.
FISHING SEASONS – Alexander Lake is open to fishing year round. Baldwins Pond and Green Falls Reservoir are open to fishing from 6:00 am Opening Day through the last day of February.
CATFISH – There is now a creel limit of 6 Channel Catfish and White Catfish in aggregate per day, except in Beaver Park Lagoon, Birge Pond, Bunnells Pond, Center Springs Park Pond, Freshwater Pond, Keeney Park Pond, Lake Wintergreen, Lakewood Lake, Mirror Lake, Picketts Pond, Rowans Pond, Mohegan Park Pond and Stanley Quarter Pond where the creel limit is 3 catfish per day.
COMMON CARP – There is now a creel limit of 5 common carp per day, with no more than 1 fish greater than 30 inches in length, except in Trophy Carp Waters (see below).
TROPHY CARP WATERS – Batterson Park Pond, Connecticut River (including the portions of tributaries open year-round), Squantz Pond and West Thompson Reservoir are designated as Trophy Carp Waters with a one carp per day creel limit and a 26 inch maximum length for Common Carp.
METHODS – Tenkara fishing (a traditional Japanese method of fly-fishing without a reel) is now allowed in fly fishing areas.
ATLANTIC SALMON BROODSTOCK AREAS – The period when broodstock salmon gear restriction applies to all species in broodstock areas is now from September 1 to March 31 (inclusive).
TROUT PARKS – Pasture Pond at the Quinebaug Valley State Trout Hatchery, Plainfield, is now a designated Trout Park with a 2 trout per day creel limit.
Click here to read the new regulations.
Proposed regulations that would require purchase of a trout stamp are on hold at least into February.
The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection posted on the Connecticut Fish and Wildlife Facebook page that the regulations had been sent back so some concerns raised by the Legislative Regulation Review Committee could be addressed.
That means continue fishing with a 2018 license until further notice, without the purchase of a stamp.
According to the Facebook post:
“Our regulations package was on the docket at yesterday’s Legislative Regulation Review Committee (LRRC) meeting (January 23). Three of the actions the LRRC can take are, approve, reject without prejudice, and reject with prejudice.
“The LRRC voted to “reject without prejudice” the regulations package, which means that there were some issues that were deemed to be “substantive concerns” that need to be addressed.
“None of the concerns raised affect the content of the regulations, except as to whether there can be a single stamp (for both trout and salmon as DEEP proposed) or two separate stamps (one for trout/kokanee and one for Atlantic Salmon).
“We are currently working on addressing those concerns to the committee’s (and their LCO reviewer) satisfaction so that the package can be resubmitted for approval at the next LRRC meeting (February 27). Stay tuned.
“So for now you can purchase your fishing license as you normally would and fish for trout as you normally would.”
Included in the proposed regulations package is extension of the Mill River Wild Trout Management Area.
Updates will be posted as they become available.