License fees mean better fishing

March brings spring’s arrival, the start of a new fishing season and the obligation of anglers to invest in the management of the Ohio’s fish and fisheries.

For many years, March 1 not only signaled the beginning of the end of winter, but also the time when a new fishing license was required for the upcoming season. New license options give those who enjoy fishing more options, but many still use the beginning of March as the time when they buy their 12-month license.

An Ohio resident fishing license costs $25 and is valid for one year from the date of purchase. The money generated by the sale of fishing and hunting licenses and the excise taxes collected on hunting and fishing equipment fund the operations of the Ohio Division of Wildlife and the numerous management and conservation programs in the Buckeye State.

“Successful fish and wildlife management in Ohio starts with every person who purchases a fishing or hunting license,” said Division of Wildlife Chief Kendra Wecker. “License sales help the Division of Wildlife manage fish and wildlife populations and the habitats that sustain them. Thank you for purchasing a license and supporting conservation this year.”

Anglers can see and experience the benefits of the money Ohio Division of Wildlife spends on fish management. The state’s walleye stocking program is a great success, as anglers enjoy good fishing in Mosquito, Berlin, Pymatuning and other Ohio reservoirs.

Their walleye populations are supplemented by fish raised in the state hatchery from fertilized eggs obtained during the annual netting program at Mosquito Lake.

The Lake Erie steelhead fishery is another success story made possible by fishing license revenues. Top-shelf stocking and management work have resulted in a sturdy population of steelhead and spectacular fishing opportunities in the big lake during the summer and in Erie tributaries in autumn, winter and spring.

State officials have made license purchases more convenient with the free HuntFish OH mobile app. HuntFish OH is available for Android and iOS users.

In addition to buying licenses, app users can also read the regulations and view wildlife area maps.

After an online purchase, including by smartphone, anyone with an online account can obtain a free reprint of a license or permit — an option not available at agents. Customers also have the option of choosing automatic license renewal when purchasing online.

The selected license will renew automatically and ensure the license buyer always has a valid license.

Fishing, hunting and other outdoor pursuits are popular in Ohio and generate a significant economic impact. A recent news release from the Division of Wildlife reports an estimated 171 million outdoor recreation trips are made each year. Outdoor sports activity rang up a total of $5.9 billion for Ohio’s economy, according to the Economic Valuation of Natural Areas in Ohio report released by The Ohio State University.

For additional information about Ohio’s fishing licenses and the 2021-22 regulations, go to ohiodnr.gov and navigate to the fishing license section.


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