It’s spring fishing season and Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) conservation officers want to encourage anglers to get outdoors and enjoy our natural resources in a safe and sustainable way.
Ontario’s conservation officers remind anglers to be aware of the regulations that specify where and how they can fish and how many fish they can harvest.
Most people require a recreational fishing licence to legally fish in Ontario. They must carry their outdoors card, or temporary outdoors card accompanied by a valid recreational fishing licence or licence summary, whenever they fish. They must present these documents to a conservation officer if requested.
The Ontario government has launched a new Fish and Wildlife Licensing Service that makes life easier for anglers, with new online and mobile features and a single Outdoors Card. It can be accessed online at huntandfishontario.com, at participating ServiceOntario locations or at one of over 700 licence issuers across the province.
Ontario’s conservation officers remind anglers to check their fishing licence and the current Ontario Fishing Regulations Summary well in advance of their first outing. This summary lists possession limits, season start and end dates, acceptable fishing methods, and other regulations for the Fisheries Management Zone (FMZ) and any waterbody in which they will be fishing. The 2019 Ontario Fishing Regulations Summary is available online at https://www.ontario.ca/document/ontario-fishing-regulations-summary or in print at some licence issuers across the province. Be sure to review the corrections to the 2019 annual summary prior to fishing.
Aurora and Peterborough Enforcement Units receive numerous tips each year regarding resource users who are fishing during the closed season, catching and keeping fish over the limit, fishing by prohibited means such as snagging and netting, committing violations under the Liquor Licence Act and the Trespass to Property Act, and littering. Coffee cups, worm containers, fishing line and any other garbage is not only unsightly, but it can also pose a serious threat to fish, wildlife and their habitat. It is also illegal to release any live bait or dump the contents of a bait bucket, including the water, into any waters or within 30 m of any waters. Please be a responsible angler and always pack out what you bring in.
To report a natural resource violation, call the MNRF TIPS line at 1-877-847-7667 toll-free any time or contact your local ministry office during regular business hours. You can also call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
Visit Ontario.ca/mnrftips to view an interactive, searchable map of unsolved natural resource cases. You may be able to provide information that will help solve a case.