Fishing legally in Maryland will warrant either a recreational fishing license or commercial fishing license, depending on the type of fishing an angler wishes to purse. A recreational license is intended for anglers who are fishing for fun or for sport. Commercial fishing permits are intended for anglers who wish to fish for profit or in order to legally sell fish. In addition, since Maryland is a coastal state, there are also saltwater fishing license options to consider when fishing outside of freshwater areas.
It is important to know the difference between the freshwater fishing license cost and cost for a saltwater fishing permit before casting a line in Maryland. There are also different prices associated with non-resident freshwater fishing license fees and resident fees. To find out more about the cost for sport fishing licenses in Maryland, continue reading below.
Who needs a fishing license in Maryland?
A freshwater fishing license in Maryland will be necessary for an angler age 16 or older. A sport fishing license will also be necessary for residents and non-residents who wish to fish in particular areas of the state. For instance, an additional game fishing license is required for fishing in the Chesapeake Bay. The only exemptions include:
- Anglers younger than 16 years of age.
- Anglers registered with the State of Maryland holding a valid saltwater fishing license.
- Anglers who hold a commercial fishing license.
- Anglers fishing from a licensed commercial pier.
- Owners fishing from a real private property.
- Anglers fishing from a licensed charter boat.
- Anglers fishing on a free fishing day.
- Anglers possessing a Potomac River Fisheries Commission recreational license.
- Resident anglers on active duty from the armed forces who are on leave.
Maryland Fishing License Requirements
A few requirements to obtain a game fishing license in Maryland, whether for recreational saltwater licenses or a freshwater license include establishing residency within the state of Maryland first. Resident and non-resident fishing licenses will have different regulations and fees, so it is important to establish in advance which category of license an angler will need.
Types of Fishing Licenses in Maryland
Knowing the varying type of recreational fishing licenses offered in Maryland can help anglers choose what works best. The types of game and fish fishing license options in MD include:
- Annual Non-Tidal Freshwater Licenses
- 7-Day Non-Tidal License
- 3-Day Non-Tidal License
- Trout Stamp
- Resident Senior Consolidated License
- Resident and Non-Resident Chesapeake Bay & Coastal Sport (annual) License
- 7-day Chesapeake Bay & Coastal Sport License
- Consolidated Chesapeake Bay & Coastal Sport Boat License
- Commercial Fishing Pier License
The term “non-tidal” indicates anglers who fish in freshwater areas. The Chesapeake Bar & Coastal sport license is directly related to recreational saltwater fishing licenses.
What types of fish can I catch with a fishing license in Maryland?
Whether fishing in Maryland with a recreational fishing license, commercial fishing permits or a saltwater fishing permit, the types of fish available are abundant. A few of the most common types of fish available in Maryland include:
- Maryland darters
- Bay anchovy
- Red drums
- Summer flounder
- River herring
- Atlanta menhaden
What types of fish require special fishing permits or tags in Maryland?
Despite holding a sport fishing license in Maryland, there is a special fishing stamp needed in order to fish for trout. The trout stamp allows residents and non-residents age 16 and older to fish for the special catch.
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How long is a fishing license valid in Maryland?
After purchasing a resident freshwater fishing license in Maryland, it will be valid for up to 365 days from the date of purchase. There are certain temporary freshwater fishing licenses, however, that are only valid for the period of time in which they are intended for.
How much does a Maryland fishing license cost?
“How much is a freshwater fishing license in Maryland?”“Does the freshwater fishing license cost more than the saltwater fishing license?” Depending on the type of license, prices will fluctuate, especially with resident and non-resident options. The prices for fishing licenses in Maryland include:
- Annual Non-Tidal Freshwater Licenses (resident) – $20.50
- Annual Non-Tidal Freshwater Licenses (non-resident) – $30.50
- 7-Day Non-Tidal License (resident) – $7.50
- 3-Day Non-Tidal License (non-resident only) – equal to the fee charged a MD resident
- Trout Stamp – $5.00
- Resident Senior Consolidated License – $5.00
- Resident Chesapeake Bay & Coastal Sport License – $15.00
- Non-Resident Chesapeake Bay & Coastal Sport License – $22.50
- 7-day Chesapeake Bay & Coastal Sport License (resident) – $6
- 7-day Chesapeake Bay & Coastal Sport License (non-resident) – $12
- Consolidated Chesapeake Bay & Coastal Sport Boat License – $240.00 for up to six passengers/$290.00 more than six passengers
- Commercial Fishing Pier License – $240.00
Are fishing license discounts available in Maryland?
A recreational fishing license discount is available Maryland for those who are legally blind, service connected disabled veterans or former prisoners of war. While these discounts are intended for residents and non-resident freshwater fishing license options and saltwater fishing permits, they do not extend to the trout stamp.
Where can I get a fishing license in Maryland?
Purchasing a sport fishing license in Maryland can happen in one of four ways: online, by telephone, in person at the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Service Center office or through local vendors. There are over 250 recreational fishing license agents throughout Maryland through which a license can be purchased.
How can I replace my Maryland fishing license?
A replacement license for a shoreline saltwater fishing license or a recreational freshwater fishing license can be emailed to an angler as long as he or she provided an email during the original purchase. This can be done if the original game license is lost or damaged. Anglers can also reprint the sport fishing license for free online. To replace a Consolidated Bay sport boat license, the fee will be $5.00.