New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos today announced that the open (harvest) season for largemouth and smallmouth bass, collectively known as black bass, begins Wednesday, June 15, and runs through Nov. 30. The June 15 opener is now the standard opening date for these species, replacing the third Saturday in June. For most of the state, a catch-and-release season exists from Dec. 1 through June 14. Special fishing regulations exist for some waters as outlined in the current fishing regulations guide and should be closely reviewed before heading out to fish.
“Largemouth bass and smallmouth bass are New York’s most popular freshwater sportfish,” Commissioner Seggos said. “I encourage all to head out and experience the tremendous bass fishing we have here in New York, and while you’re at it, take a youngster along with you to make some great memories.”
New York has a number of waters that consistently rank as some of the best bass angling destinations in the country. In 2021, New York boasted a remarkable six locations in Bassmaster Magazine’s top 25 bass lakes in the Northeast. This included the St. Lawrence River (Thousand Islands) (#1), Lake Erie (#3), Lake Champlain (#4), Cayuga Lake (#11), Oneida Lake (#18), and Chautauqua Lake (#25).
Both largemouth and smallmouth bass are widely distributed across the state with plentiful great bass fishing locations in addition New York’s “big six.” For more information, visit DEC’s Places to Fish and Warmwater Fishing webpages.