Mark Beauchesne,(603) 271-3212
Sgt. Bruce Bonenfant, (603) 271-3127
Jane Vachon, (603) 271-3211
December 20, 2005

New for 2006: Some Fishing Rules Change on January 1

CONCORD, N.H. - Baby, it's cold outside -- just the thing to get outdoor enthusiasts excited about ice fishing. Before you head out to drill your holes and set your tip-ups, familiarize yourself with new fishing rules that become effective January 1, 2006.

"The last ice fishing season was long and fish-filled," says Mark Beauchesne, coordinator of the Let's Go Fishing program at New Hampshire Fish and Game. "This year I anticipate the same, but there are some new regulations every angler should be aware of."

New fishing rules effective January 1, 2006, include:

  • Bobhouses now must display 12 square inches of reflective material on the outside of each of the four walls. This includes portable shelters. "A one-inch wide, 12-inch long strip of reflective tape on all four sides will work fine," says Beauchesne; he plans to meet this requirement in style by spraying reflective paint on his bobhouse in the shape of a big fish.

  • For management reasons, new bag limits have been placed on yellow perch, horned pout and all sunfishes. The daily limit is now 25 for white perch, black crappie, yellow perch, horned pout and sunfish, with a 50-fish aggregate daily possession limit for all these species combined. Previously, there was no daily bag limit for yellow perch, horned pout or sunfish, and there was no combined limit for these species. "As with any taking of fish, always take only what you can use," Beauchesne adds.

  • The sale of lead sinkers weighing one ounce or less and lead jigs less than one inch in length is banned effective 1/1/06. (The use of this tackle is already prohibited in any fresh water in the state.) Click here for more info on getting the lead out. For info on nonlead tackle alternatives, click here.

Ice fishing is a great way to get out and make the most of a long New Hampshire winter. But be familiar with the rules, and always check ice conditions wherever you fish. For tips on ice safety, click here to download the brochure "Safety on Ice."

The state's fishing regulations are outlined in the 2006 New Hampshire Freshwater Fishing Digest (click here and on the publication cover to download). The Digest is also available from license agents statewide.

The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department is the guardian of the state's fish, wildlife and marine resources and their habitats.

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