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August 23, 2011 > Free Fishing Day

Free Fishing Day

Submitted By Dana Michaels

The Department of Fish and Game (DFG) invites Californians to kick off their Labor Day weekend celebration by fishing in our state's spectacular waters. Saturday, Sept. 3 is the second of California's two 2011 Free Fishing Days, when people can try their hand at fishing without having to buy a sport fishing license.

All fishing regulations, such as bag and size limits, gear restrictions, report card requirements, fishing hours and stream closures remain in effect. Every angler must have an appropriate report card if they are fishing for abalone, steelhead, sturgeon or spiny lobster anywhere in the state, or salmon specifically in the Smith and Klamath-Trinity River systems.

DFG offers two Free Fishing Days each year - usually in conjunction with the Fourth of July and Labor Day weekend - when it's legal to fish without a sport fishing license. This year, the Free Fishing Days were set for the Saturdays preceding Independence Day and Labor Day (July 2 and Sept. 3) because they fall on holiday weekends, when a fishing excursion is likely to be most convenient for the public.

Free Fishing Days provide a low-cost way to give fishing a try. Some DFG regions offer Fishing in the City programs where you can go fishing in major metropolitan areas. Fishing in the City and Free Fishing Day clinics are designed to educate novice anglers about fishing ethics, fish habits, effective methods for catching fish and fishing tackle. You can even learn how to clean and prepare your catch so you can enjoy it for dinner that night.

Anglers should check the rules and regulations at www.dfg.ca.gov/regulations/ for the waters they plan to fish. Wardens will be on duty to enforce them. For more information on Free Fishing Days, please visit www.dfg.ca.gov/licensing/fishing/freefishdays.html.

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