Catch & Release, Selective Harvest

Anglers are encouraged to release ALL Muskellunge taken from St. Lawrence County waters.

For other species, anglers are encouraged to practice selective harvest. This practice calls upon anglers to release the larger fish of any species and to keep smaller ones for eating.

By releasing large fish, which are typically the most productive breeders, anglers are helping to ensure fish populations for future generations.

For those anglers who want to “put a fish on the wall,” reproduction mounts are available from taxidermists across the county.

How to Release Fish

  • Avoid over fighting the fish so that it becomes stressed.
  • If possible, unhook the fish in the water.
  • Carry needle nose pliers and other unhooking tools to facilitate getting the hook out.
  • If a photo is to be taken, have the camera ready before removing the fish from the water.
  • Hold the fish by its tail, and support the midsection with the other hand until the fish swims off on its own.