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Vermont Fishing Regulations: General Guidelines

Below are the general fishing regulations for Vermont. These rules apply to all waterbodies not specifically listed in the Index of Rivers or Index of Lakes. Keep in mind that waterbody-specific regulations listed in those indexes take precedence over these general regulations.

Species, Open Seasons, and Water Body Types:

  • American Shad: All Year, All Water Bodies, NA Minimum Length, 0 Daily Limit, Catch and release open-water fishing.
  • Anadromous Atlantic Salmon: No open season, All Water Bodies, NA Minimum Length, 0 Daily Limit, None.
  • Bowfin, Mullet (Redhorse), Gar:
    • All Year, River/Stream: No Minimum Length, Max 5 of any species, Open-water fishing.
    • All Year, Lake/Pond: No Minimum Length, Max 5 of any species, Open-water fishing, Ice fishing, Spear gun, Bow and crossbow with line attached.
  • Brook Trout, Brown Trout, and Rainbow Trout:
    • 2nd Sat. in April to Oct. 31, River/Stream: No Minimum Length, Max 8 total, Open-water fishing.
    • 2nd Sat. in April to Oct. 31 and Jan 1 to March 15, Lake/Pond: No Minimum Length, Max 6 total, Open-water fishing, Ice fishing.
  • Carp, Suckers (Longnose and White), Cull Fish:
    • All year, River/Stream: No Minimum Length, No Limit, Open-water fishing.
    • All year, Lake/Pond: No Minimum Length, No Limit, Open-water fishing, Ice fishing, Spear gun, Bow and crossbow with line attached.
  • Crappie: All Year, All Water Bodies, 8” Minimum Length, Max 25 Daily Limit, Open-water fishing, Ice Fishing.
  • Lake Sturgeon: No open season, All Water Bodies, NA Minimum Length, 0 Daily Limit, No fishing.
  • Lake Trout:
    • 2nd Sat. in April to Oct. 31, River/Stream: 18” Minimum Length, Max 2 total with landlocked salmon, Open-water fishing.
    • 2nd Sat. in April to Oct. 31 and Jan 1 to March 15, Lake/Pond: 18” Minimum Length, Max 2 total with landlocked salmon, Open-water fishing, Ice fishing.
  • Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass: 2nd Sat. in June to March 15, All Water Bodies, 10” Minimum Length, Max 5 total, Open-water fishing, Ice fishing.
  • Muskellunge: All Year, All Water Bodies, NA Minimum Length, 0 Daily Limit, Catch and release with artificial lures and flies only.
  • Northern Pike: All Year, All Water Bodies, 20” Minimum Length, Max 5 Daily Limit, Open-water fishing, Ice fishing.
  • Rainbow Smelt: All Year, All Water Bodies, No Minimum Length, No Limit, Open-water fishing, Ice fishing.
  • Sauger: No open season, All Water Bodies, NA Minimum Length, 0 Daily Limit, None.
  • Walleye: 1st Sat. in May to March 15, All Water Bodies, 18” Minimum Length, Max 3 Daily Limit, Open-water fishing, Ice fishing.
  • Yellow Perch: All Year, All Water Bodies, No Minimum Length, Max 50 Daily Limit, Open-water fishing, Ice fishing.
  • All Other Species: All Year, All Water Bodies, No Minimum Length, No Limit, Open-water fishing, Ice fishing.

Catch and Release:

For species with defined harvest seasons, targeted catch and release angling can occur outside of harvest season, using artificial lures and flies, except on those waters/areas closed to fishing.

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Disclaimer:

The legal advice provided on Wild Advisor Pro is intended as a summary of the hunting, camping, hiking, and fishing laws and regulations and does not constitute legal language or professional advice. We make every effort to ensure the information is accurate and up to date, but it should not be relied upon as legal authority. For the most current and comprehensive explanation of the laws and regulations, please consult the official government websites or a qualified legal professional. Wild Advisor Pro is not responsible for any misunderstandings or misinterpretations of the information presented and shall not be held liable for any losses, damages, or legal disputes arising from the use of this summary information. Always check with the appropriate governmental authorities for the latest information regarding outdoor regulations and compliance.