Sport Fishing Essentials: Licensing & Fees
Sport fishing enthusiasts can purchase the necessary licenses and permits online or at any authorized license agent or California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) License Sales Office. It's important to note that the CDFW License and Revenue Branch, as well as regional license counters, do not accept cash payments. Instead, individuals are encouraged to use checks, money orders, or debit/credit cards adorned with the Visa or Mastercard logo for their transactions.
To qualify as a resident for licensing purposes in California, one must have lived continuously in the state for six months or more immediately before applying for a license or permit. This category also includes individuals on active military duty with the United States Armed Forces or any auxiliary branch, as well as those enrolled in the Job Corps.
Most fees for licenses and permits include an additional 5% handling fee charged by license agents and a 3% nonrefundable application fee. This inclusion is part of the overall cost and is essential for maintaining the operational aspects of wildlife and conservation services.
365-Day Sport Fishing Licenses: Details and Fees
A 365-Day Sport Fishing License is valid for a full year from the date of purchase, offering anglers the flexibility to fish any day within that period. Whether targeting fish, mollusks, crustaceans, invertebrates, amphibians, or reptiles in California's diverse inland or ocean waters, a sport fishing license is mandatory. Note that additional validations and report cards may be required for specific species and areas.
The following are the types and fees for the 365-Day Sport Fishing Licenses for the year 2024:
- Resident Sport Fishing ($61.82): Available to any California resident 16 years of age or older. This license opens the door to vast fishing opportunities across the state.
- Nonresident Sport Fishing ($166.89): Designed for non-residents 16 years or older, this license is perfect for those visiting California and looking to enjoy its fishing offerings.
- Reduced-Fee Sport Fishing License - Disabled Veteran ($9.53 at CDFW Offices, $9.98 from License Agents): This is a special rate for resident or nonresident honorably discharged disabled veterans with a 50% or greater service-connected disability. Eligibility must be pre-qualified, and subsequent licenses are available wherever licenses are sold.
- Reduced-Fee Sport Fishing License – Recovering Service Member ($9.53 at CDFW Offices, $9.98 from License Agents): Available for any recovering service member of the US military. Similar to the disabled veteran license, eligibility needs to be established first.
- Reduced Fee Sport Fishing License - Low Income Senior ($9.53): For low-income California residents aged 65 or over who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or CAPI. It's important to note that the eligibility criteria have changed as of January 1, 2022, and this license is only available at CDFW License Sales Offices.
- Free Sport Fishing License - Low Income Native American (No Fee): This license is for any Native American resident of the state who is financially unable to pay the fee required for a resident sport fishing license. It's obtainable solely at CDFW License Sales Offices.
- Free Sport Fishing License - Mobility Impaired, Blind or Developmentally Disabled (No Fee): For individuals with significant disabilities, this license can be obtained for the first time from the CDFW License and Revenue Branch, with subsequent licenses available from any license agent.
Short Term Sport Fishing Licenses: Options and Pricing
For those seeking a brief foray into California's fishing scene without the commitment of an annual license, California offers several short-term sport fishing licenses for 2024. These licenses are ideal for both residents and nonresidents and provide a cost-effective way to enjoy fishing for a set number of days. They include:
- One-day Sport Fishing License ($20.26): This license allows any individual, resident or nonresident, to fish on any one specified day. It's perfect for a spontaneous fishing trip or trying out fishing for the first time. Importantly, one-day sport fishing licenses are exempt from the Ocean Enhancement Validation requirement, making it even more convenient for ocean fishing.
- Two-day Sport Fishing License ($31.06): Like the one-day license, this option extends the fishing period to any two consecutive days. It's suitable for a weekend getaway or a short vacation, offering a bit more time to explore various fishing spots. This license is also exempt from the Ocean Enhancement Validation requirement.
- Ten-day Nonresident Sport Fishing License ($61.82): Exclusively for nonresidents, this license allows for ten consecutive days of fishing. It's a great choice for visitors who want to take full advantage of California's diverse fishing opportunities over an extended vacation.
Validations and Report Cards for California Sport Fishing
In California, certain species require anglers to carry specific validations and report cards in addition to their fishing license. These are essential for managing and monitoring fish populations and ensuring sustainable fishing practices. The following are the validations and report cards required for various fishing activities, along with their fees for the year 2024:
- Ocean Enhancement Validation ($7.05): Necessary for anyone fishing in ocean waters south of Point Arguello in Santa Barbara County. This validation is not required for those fishing with a One or Two-Day Sport Fishing License.
- Second Rod Validation ($19.44): Permits the use of two rods or lines simultaneously in inland waters, except in areas restricted to artificial lures or barbless hooks. It is not needed when fishing in ocean waters.
- Recreational Crab Trap Validation ($2.98): Starting from November 1, 2021, this validation is essential for anyone using crab traps. However, it's not needed when using hoop nets or crab loop traps for taking crabs.
- Colorado River Validation (N/A): Previously required for fishing along the California-Arizona boundary of the Colorado River, this validation has been discontinued. Currently, anglers with a valid California or Arizona sport fishing license can fish from either shore.
- Abalone Report Card ($29.73): Necessary for anyone taking abalone from ocean waters north of San Francisco Bay's center mouth. Only one per person per year is issued, and currently, the fishery is closed.
- Sturgeon Fishing Report Card ($10.80): Required for anyone taking sturgeon. Each angler is limited to one report card per year.
- North Coast Salmon Report Card ($8.64): Required for taking salmon in the Smith or Klamath-Trinity River Systems. Note that the fishery is currently closed due to low Chinook Salmon stock abundance.
- Steelhead Report Card ($9.72): Necessary for anyone fishing for steelhead in inland waters.
- Spiny Lobster Report Card ($12.14): Required for all persons taking spiny lobster, with a notable $21.60 non-return fee assessed if the card is not returned or the harvest not reported online by April 30 for the following season.
Lifetime Fishing Licenses: Costs and Categories
California offers Lifetime Fishing Licenses for residents who wish to enjoy long-term access to fishing without the need to renew annually. These licenses are a one-time purchase and remain valid for the lifetime of the holder, offering a convenient and cost-effective solution for avid anglers. Here are the available categories and their respective fees for 2024:
- Ages 0-9 ($679.75): This license is an investment in a child's future fishing adventures, ensuring they can fish from a young age well into adulthood.
- Ages 10-39 ($1,112.00): Designed for young to middle-aged adults, this license covers the prime fishing years, providing decades of fishing opportunities.
- Ages 40-61 ($1,001.75): Tailored for individuals in the middle age group, this license offers a slightly reduced rate from the 10-39 age group.
- Ages 62+ ($679.75): Reflecting the same price as the youngest age group, this license is for senior residents, making lifelong fishing more accessible as they enter retirement age.
Fishing Privilege Package ($459.25):
In addition to the lifetime license, California offers a Fishing Privilege Package that includes additional validations and report cards for a comprehensive fishing experience. The package includes:
- Lifetime Second-Rod Validation: Allows holders to fish with two rods or lines in inland waters, increasing the chances of a successful outing.
- Ocean Enhancement Validation: Required for those fishing in certain ocean waters, this validation enhances the license's versatility.
- North Coast Salmon Report Card and Steelhead Report Card: Essential for those targeting specific species, ensuring compliance with conservation efforts.
Duplicate Fees for California Sport Fishing
In the event that a sport fishing license, validation, or report card is lost or stolen, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) offers replacements for these documents at specified fees. These duplicate fees for 2024 ensure that anglers can continue their fishing activities with minimal disruption. Below are the costs and descriptions for obtaining duplicates:
- Duplicate Sport Fishing License ($13.78): If your sport fishing license is lost or stolen, you can obtain a duplicate to replace it. This ensures that you can continue fishing legally without having to purchase a new license.
- Sport Fishing Validation ($3.81): This fee applies to replacing lost or stolen sport fishing validations, such as Second-Rod, Ocean Enhancement, and Recreational Crab Trap validations. It's a small cost to regain the extra permissions these validations offer.
- Sturgeon Report Card ($18.03): A replacement for a lost or stolen Sturgeon Report Card is available for this fee. It's important to note that you can only get this duplicate at CDFW license sales offices, and you may need to complete a Sturgeon Fishing Report Card Affidavit (PDF available online).
- Abalone Report Card ($21.63): Though the abalone fishery is currently closed, a replacement for a lost or stolen Abalone Report Card is available at this price. Similar to the Sturgeon Report Card, it's only obtainable at CDFW license sales offices.
Online Reporting of Fishing Harvest
After you log in to the Online License Service, select HARVEST REPORTING and follow the instructions to report your harvest.
Online Reporting for California Sport Fishing: Schedules and Penalties
California Department of Fish and Wildlife mandates timely submission of harvest data for certain species to aid in conservation and management. Below are the details on when and how to report your harvest, as well as penalties for late submissions.
Harvest Report Type - Abalone Report Card
- Reporting Dates: December 1 - January 31
- Late Reporting: February 1 - April 1
- Program Information: This applies to the Abalone species. Note that while the fishery might be closed, past holders of the card may need to report.
Harvest Report Type - Spiny Lobster Report Card
- Reporting Dates: March 23 - April 30
- Late Reporting: May 1 - July 1
- Program Information: Pertains to Spiny Lobster. A $21.60 non-return fee is imposed if the full season Spiny Lobster Report Card is not returned or the harvest is not reported online by April 30 following the close of the lobster season.
Harvest Report Type - North Coast Salmon Report Card
- Reporting Dates: January 1 - January 31
- Late Reporting: February 1 - April 1
- Program Information: This card is for tracking Salmon harvests specifically in the North Coast region.
Harvest Report Type - Steelhead Report Card
- Reporting Dates: January 1 - January 31
- Late Reporting: February 1 - April 1
- Program Information: Essential for those fishing Steelhead, providing critical data for the species' management.
Harvest Report Type - Sturgeon Fishing Report Card
- Reporting Dates: January 1 - January 31
- Late Reporting: February 1 - April 1
- Program Information: Required for anyone taking Sturgeon, crucial for tracking and managing this species.
Free and Reduced-Fee Sport Fishing Licenses
California offers Free and Reduced-Fee Sport Fishing Licenses to qualifying individuals. These licenses are designed to ensure that more people have the opportunity to enjoy fishing, regardless of their financial circumstances or physical abilities. Below are the categories and the criteria applicants must meet to qualify for these licenses.
Disabled Veteran Sport Fishing License
California recognizes the sacrifices made by members of the armed forces with the Disabled Veteran Sport Fishing License, available at a reduced fee of $9.98. This license allows honorably discharged veterans with a service-connected disability rating of 50% or greater to engage in sport fishing at a significantly lower cost.
Eligibility Requirements: To qualify for this reduced-fee license, veterans must provide documentation proving:
- Honorable discharge from the U.S. Armed Forces.
- A service-connected disability rating of 50% or greater.
- Prequalification: Submit a letter from the Veteran's Administration confirming your honorable discharge and disability rating.
- Verification: Once the Department of Fish and Wildlife verifies your eligibility, your customer record will be updated.
- Purchase: After receiving notification that your record has been updated, you can purchase the reduced-fee disabled veteran sport fishing license from any authorized license vendor.
This program is part of California's commitment to honor those who have served by offering them the therapeutic benefits and joy of fishing. Once verified, eligible veterans can easily purchase their license and enjoy the vast fishing opportunities California waters have to offer.
Recovering Service Member Sport Fishing License
California offers a special reduced-fee sport fishing license at $9.98 for recovering service members. This initiative acknowledges the physical and emotional healing benefits of fishing, especially for individuals recuperating from serious injuries or illnesses related to their military service.
Definition of a Recovering Service Member: A recovering service member is defined as an individual who is part of the Armed Forces, including members of the National Guard or Reserve, currently undergoing medical treatment, recuperation, or therapy. These individuals must be in an outpatient status while recovering from a serious injury or illness directly related to their military service.
Eligibility and Application Process:
- Verification of Status: To apply for this license, submit a letter from your commanding officer or a military medical doctor. The letter must verify your status as a recovering service member and include your expected recovery date.
- Department Processing: Upon receipt and verification of your eligibility, the Department of Fish and Wildlife will update your customer profile with your expected recovery date. This date determines how long you can renew your license without needing to resubmit verification.
- License Renewal: With the expected recovery date entered in your profile, you can renew your license annually up to this date without additional verification from your commanding officer or military medical doctor.
Prequalifying for a Disabled Veteran or Recovering Service Member License
Prequalifying for a Disabled Veteran or Recovering Service Member sport fishing license in California requires specific steps to verify eligibility. Here are the detailed instructions on how to submit your documentation:
Gather Required Identification:
- A photocopy of your driver's license.
- Your GO ID number (found on any previously issued ALDS fishing or hunting license). If you do not have a GO ID number, you must create a customer record online to obtain one.
Prepare Documentation of Eligibility:
- Disabled Veterans: Submit a letter from the Veteran’s Administration documenting your honorable discharge and service-connected disability rating of 50% or greater.
- Recovering Service Members: Provide a letter from your Commanding Officer or a military medical doctor verifying your status as a recovering service member, including the expected recovery date.
Include Contact Information:
- Your telephone number.
- Your email address (optional, but it can expedite the issuance process).
For Hunting Licenses Only:
- Provide proof of hunter education. This is not needed if you have purchased a California hunting license after 2011, as CDFW will have your hunter education on file.
Methods to Submit Your Documentation:
You can submit your documents for prequalification through the following methods:
- Mail: Send a photocopy of your identification and eligibility documentation to any CDFW license sales office.
- Fax: Fax your documents to (916) 419-7585.
- Secure Document Upload: To upload your documents securely, you need to request a secure document upload link. Email your request to LRB@wildlife.ca.gov. You will receive a response with a link to upload your documents securely. Do not send your documents via email directly.
Reduced-Fee Sport Fishing License for Low-Income Seniors
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) offers a Reduced-Fee Sport Fishing License specifically for low-income seniors, acknowledging the benefits of fishing as an accessible outdoor activity. As authorized by Fish and Game Code, Section 7150, this license provides an opportunity for seniors to engage in sport fishing at a reduced cost.
Eligibility Changes: As of January 1, 2022, following the enactment of Assembly Bill 817 on October 7, 2021, the eligibility criteria for this reduced-fee license have been updated. To qualify, individuals must meet the following requirements:
- Age: Must be 65 years or older.
- Residency: Must be a resident of California.
Income: Must receive benefits through one of the following programs:
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI) pursuant to Section 12200 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.
- Cash Assistance Program for Aged, Blind, and Disabled Legal Immigrants (CAPI) pursuant to Chapter 10.3 (commencing with Section 18937) of Part 6 of Division 9 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.
Annual Verification: To maintain eligibility and renew the license annually, seniors must provide verification from the Social Security Administration or the Department of Social Services confirming their receipt of benefits through SSI or CAPI.
Cost: The fee for the Reduced-Fee Sport Fishing License for Low-Income Seniors is $9.53. It's important to note that while the license is available at a reduced rate, additional validations or cards required for certain species must be purchased at the regular fee.
Applying for a Reduced-Fee Sport Fishing License for Low-Income Seniors
To apply for a Reduced-Fee Sport Fishing License designated for low-income seniors, applicants must follow specific procedures each year, as these licenses require annual renewal. Here are the steps to ensure eligibility and receive your reduced-fee license:
Confirm Your Eligibility:
- Ensure you are 65 years of age or older and a resident of California.
- Verify that you are receiving benefits through either Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or the Cash Assistance Program for Aged, Blind, and Disabled Legal Immigrants (CAPI).
Gather Necessary Documentation:
- Obtain official documentation or a verification letter from the Social Security Administration or Department of Social Services. This document must confirm your current receipt of benefits through SSI or CAPI.
Visit a CDFW License Sales Office:
- With your eligibility documentation, visit any CDFW License Sales Office. These offices are where you will present your documents, verify your eligibility, and renew your Reduced-Fee Sport Fishing License.
- Be prepared to fill out any necessary forms and provide personal identification, such as a driver's license or state ID.
- Remember that Reduced-Fee Sport Fishing Licenses for low-income seniors require annual renewal. Each year, you must provide up-to-date verification of your continued eligibility through SSI or CAPI.
Pay the Fee:
- Once your eligibility is confirmed at the CDFW License Sales Office, you will pay the reduced fee of $9.53 for your license. Note that additional validations or cards required for certain species must still be purchased at the regular fee.
Free Sport Fishing Licenses
Under Fish and Game Code, Section 7151, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) offers Free Sport Fishing Licenses to individuals who meet certain criteria, ensuring that fishing remains an accessible and inclusive activity. While the license itself is free, additional validations or cards for specific species and areas may still require purchase at the regular fee. Here are the criteria for obtaining a Free Sport Fishing License:
- Eligibility: Any person with central vision acuity of 20/200 or less in the better eye with the best possible correcting glasses, or better than 20/200 if the widest diameter of the visual field is no greater than 20 degrees.
- Required Documentation: Certification of blindness by an optometrist or an ophthalmologist.
- Renewal: Those who have received their license through the Automated License Data System (ALDS) can renew at any CDFW license agent, sales office, or online.
- Print Free Sport Fishing License Application - Blind (PDF Form)
Severely Physically Disabled Individuals:
- Eligibility: Residents of the state who are permanently unable to move from place to place without the aid of a wheelchair, walker, forearm crutches, or a comparable mobility-related device.
- Required Documentation: Verification by a licensed physician or a copy of the previous year's free fishing license.
- Renewal: License can be renewed through ALDS at any CDFW license agent, sales office, or online.
- Print Free Sport Fishing License Application - Mobility Impaired (PDF Form)
Developmentally Disabled Individuals:
- Eligibility: Any developmentally disabled person.
- Required Documentation: Certification by a licensed physician or the director of a State regional center.
- Renewal: Those who have received their license through ALDS can renew at any CDFW license agent, sales office, or online.
- Print Free Sport Fishing License Application - Developmentally Disabled (PDF Form)
Low-Income Native Americans:
- Eligibility: Any Native American who is a resident of the State and is financially unable to pay the fee required for a resident sport fishing license.
- Required Documentation: Certification of tribal enrollment, a Certificate of Degree of Indian Blood, or an official tribal membership or identification card with membership number.
- Print Free Sport Fishing License Application - Low Income Native Americans (PDF Form)
Frequently Asked Questions: California Sport Fishing Licenses
What is a Sport Fishing License?
- A Sport Fishing License is a permit that allows individuals to fish in California's inland and ocean waters. It's mandatory for anyone attempting to take fish, mollusks, crustaceans, invertebrates, amphibians, or reptiles.
Where can I purchase a Sport Fishing License?
- Licenses can be purchased online, at any licensed agent, or CDFW license sales office. Note that CDFW offices do not accept cash.
Who needs a Sport Fishing License in California?
- Generally, anyone 16 years of age or older who is fishing is required to have a valid license. Specific exemptions apply, such as for those fishing on Free Fishing Days.
What are the costs of the various Sport Fishing Licenses?
- Costs vary depending on the type of license, resident status, and age. Please refer to the detailed fee structure provided earlier in the conversation.
What is an Ocean Enhancement Validation, and do I need it?
- It's required for fishing in ocean waters south of Point Arguello. It's not needed when fishing under a One or Two-Day Sport Fishing License.
What is a Second Rod Validation?
- It allows you to fish with two rods or lines in inland waters, except in areas where only artificial lures or barbless hooks may be used.
What are report cards and why do I need them?
- Report cards are required for certain species and areas to help with conservation efforts. They must be filled out to track catches of species like steelhead, sturgeon, and spiny lobster.
How do I report my catch or apply for report cards?
- Report cards must be returned or harvests reported online by specified dates. Failure to do so may result in a non-return fee for some species.
What are the different types of sport fishing licenses available?
- California offers Annual, Short-term, Free, Reduced-Fee, and Lifetime licenses, each catering to different needs and populations.
Are there any free or reduced-fee licenses available?
- Yes, California offers free and reduced-fee licenses to eligible low-income seniors, disabled veterans, recovering service members, low-income Native Americans, and others based on specific criteria.
How do I qualify for a Reduced-Fee Disabled Veteran Sport Fishing License?
- You need to be an honorably discharged veteran with a service-connected disability rating of 50% or greater. Documentation from the Veteran's Administration is required.
What is the Reduced-Fee Sport Fishing License for Low-Income Seniors?
- It's a discounted license for California residents 65 years or older who receive SSI or CAPI benefits.
How do I apply for a Free Sport Fishing License?
- Determine the correct category (Blind, Mobility Impaired, Developmentally Disabled, Low-Income Native American), complete the appropriate application, and submit it with necessary documentation.
Can I renew my Free or Reduced-Fee License online?
- Yes, after the first issuance, most can be renewed online or at any CDFW license agent or sales office, except for the Free Low-Income Native American license which requires a new application annually.
What is the lifetime fishing license, and how does it work?
- A Lifetime Fishing License is available to California residents and remains valid for the lifetime of the holder. It eliminates the need for annual renewals and varies in price by age category.
How do I replace a lost or stolen license?
- Duplicate licenses and validations can be obtained for a fee by providing the necessary identification and previous license information to any CDFW license sales office.
Do I need a license to fish from a public pier?
- No, a sport fishing license is not required when fishing from a public pier in ocean waters.
What happens if I don't return my report card?
- Failure to return report cards by the due date results in a non-return fee, particularly for species like the spiny lobster.
Can non-residents purchase a fishing license in California?
- Yes, non-residents can purchase an annual, short-term, or ten-day nonresident sport fishing license.
Where can I find more information on fishing regulations and protected areas?
- Visit the California Department of Fish and Wildlife's website or consult the current California Sport Fishing Regulations booklet for detailed and up-to-date information.
How do I update personal information on my fishing license?
- Contact the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) directly. You can update your information online through the Automated License Data System (ALDS), visit a CDFW license sales office, or call their customer service for assistance.
What is the difference between a sport fishing license and an ocean enhancement validation?
- A sport fishing license allows you to fish in California waters, while an Ocean Enhancement Validation is an additional requirement for fishing in certain southern California ocean waters and is usually purchased alongside the sport fishing license.
Can I fish anywhere with a California sport fishing license?
- A California sport fishing license allows you to fish in most state waters but be aware of area-specific regulations, closures, and required validations or report cards for certain species and areas.
Are there any discounts for military personnel for California fishing licenses?
- California offers reduced-fee sport fishing licenses for disabled veterans and recovering service members. Active duty military personnel stationed in California may also be eligible for resident rates.
How do I know if I need a report card or validation for certain fish species?
- Refer to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife regulations or the current California Sport Fishing Regulations booklet. Typically, species like sturgeon, salmon in certain rivers, and spiny lobster require additional report cards.
What should I do if I catch a fish not allowed or during a closed season?
- Immediately release it back into the water in the most humane way possible. Make sure to familiarize yourself with the regulations of the area and species before fishing.
Is there a free fishing day in California, and who can participate?
- Yes, California offers two Free Fishing Days annually, typically one in July and another in September, where anyone can fish without a license. However, all other fishing regulations still apply.
How often do I need to renew my sport fishing license?
- Annual sport fishing licenses are valid from January 1 through December 31 each year and must be renewed annually. Lifetime licenses do not require renewal.
Can I transfer my fishing license to someone else if I no longer use it?
- No, California sport fishing licenses are non-transferable and must be used by the person to whom they are issued.
What is the penalty for fishing without a valid license in California?
- Fishing without a valid license can result in fines, penalties, and the confiscation of fishing gear. The exact penalty can vary based on the violation's circumstances and history.
Can I use my California fishing license in other states?
- No, California fishing licenses are only valid within the state. You'll need to purchase a license specific to other states when fishing outside California.
What happens if my sport fishing license is damaged or unreadable?
- If your license is damaged or unreadable, you should obtain a duplicate from any CDFW license sales office or authorized agent to continue fishing legally.
How can I learn about the daily bag and possession limits?
- Daily bag and possession limits are detailed in the California Sport Fishing Regulations booklet available online or at CDFW offices. These limits vary by species and sometimes by location.
What is a GO ID, and why do I need it?
- A GO ID is a unique identifier assigned to your customer profile in the CDFW's licensing system. It's needed for purchasing licenses, validations, and report cards and for applying for drawings and tags.
Are there any special licenses for tournaments or events?
- Special permits or licenses may be required for fishing tournaments or other events. Check with the event organizer and CDFW regulations for specific requirements.
How do I replace a lost or stolen report card?
- To replace a lost or stolen report card, visit a CDFW license sales office or authorized agent and be prepared to pay the duplicate fee.
What is the cost of a duplicate sport fishing license if I lose mine?
- The cost for a duplicate sport fishing license is currently set at a specified fee. Please check the latest CDFW fee schedule for the most accurate pricing.
Can children fish without a license in California?
- Yes, children under the age of 16 can fish without a license in California, but they may still need to obtain report cards for certain species.
Are there any areas in California where I don't need a fishing license?
- A fishing license is not required when fishing from a public pier in ocean waters. However, most other public waters in California will require a license.
Who can I contact for more information or if I have issues with my license?
- For more information or assistance with licensing issues, contact the California Department of Fish and Wildlife through their website, call their customer service number, or visit a local CDFW office.