Is Spearfishing Legal in Freshwater?

Spearfishing in freshwater is becoming more popular as a way to experience nature and the thrill of catching your own fish. However, there are some considerations to take into account before you take the plunge. Depending on which state you plan to spearfish in, the rules governing the activity can vary greatly.

Licensing Requirements

The first thing to consider when planning a spearfishing trip is licensing requirements. In most states, it is necessary to obtain a fishing license before engaging in any type of fishing activity, including spearfishing. Additionally, some states may require a special permit for spearfishing activity.

Species Regulations

It is also important to be aware of specific regulations governing which species can be taken while spearfishing. In some states, only certain species are allowed for taking by speargun or bow-and-arrow. Additionally, some states have size limits or bag limits that must be followed when taking any species by spear.

Location Restrictions

In addition to species regulations, there are often restrictions on where you can legally practice spearfishing in freshwater. Some states restrict the use of spearguns and/or bows-and-arrows within certain areas while others may prohibit the use of these weapons within certain bodies of water altogether.


Overall, it is important to do your research before heading out for a freshwater spearfishing trip. It is essential to understand which species can be taken and where the activity is permitted in order to ensure compliance with local laws and regulations. With proper research and preparation, spearfishing in freshwater can be an enjoyable experience for all involved.

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Michael Allen