The state of Ohio has one of the most user-friendly websites if you want to learn more about getting a fishing license, the type of species you can target in the area, and the days where you’re allowed to do so. Some regulations apply to the entire state, whereas others are applicable in certain regions.
Statewide, you are allowed to fish as much blue and flathead catfish under 35 inches as you can while that measuring 35 inches or larger is restricted to one fish per angler. You are allowed to fish up to five spotted, smallmouth, or largemouth bass with a minimum size of twelve inches. As for white, striped, and hybrid-striped bass, you can catch up to thirty in a day. There is no limit to catching any other fish with the exception of yellow perch, walleye, sauger, saugeye, muskellunge, lake sturgeon, and channel catfish.
There are some free fishing days every year, and they are announced on the ODNR Division Wildlife page. For 2020, for example, these were May 6 and May 7. The cost of a fishing license at the time this article was written was more than reasonable given that you’d have to pay just nineteen dollars if you were a resident and forty dollars if you were a nonresident.
This cost is for annual permits. Since a one-day fishing license costs eleven dollars, it goes without saying that getting one for the whole year is far more convenient. Plus, a three-day nonresident license costs just nineteen dollars, so if you do not intend to spend too much time in the area, we suggest considering this alternative.
As with other states, in Ohio, you are allowed to fish without a license if you are under the age of 16. Unlike other places, here you are allowed to give assistance to other fishermen or women who might be struggling with reeling in their catches. In such a situation, you do not need a fishing license yourself, as long as you and the person you are helping are both using the same line.
Fishing on private land is prohibited, but it is a rule of common sense after all. Permanently disabled veterans, former war prisoners, as well as people older than eighty can all obtain free licenses.
Lake Erie is subject to other regulations than those that apply to the entire state. In theory, most rules that you will have to abide by in other places are also applicable to Lake Erie. However, there are certain differences that have to be noted, such as the fact that you are allowed to fish for white bass year-round, and there is no daily limit or any minimum size. You are allowed to catch and keep up to five trout and two salmon both of which have to have a minimum size of at least 12 inches.
Something else that sets Ohio aside from other locations is that it has regulations pertaining to catching reptiles and amphibians. In frog season, you can catch green frogs and bullfrogs as long as you do not use any of the following methods in order to do so:
- Stupefying substances
- Shooting with a weapon other than a bow
The same methods must be avoided in turtle season. At the time this article was written, the season for taking turtles legally was open from July 1 to December 31. Because these dates may vary from one year to the next, we suggest checking the ODNR Division Wildlife website to make sure that you do not accidentally break the law.