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Finger Lakes and Tributaries Regulations

Finger Lakes Regulations

Conesus Lake, Hemlock Lake, Canadice Lake, Honeoye Lake, Canandaigua Lake, Keuka Lake, Seneca Lake, Cayuga Lake, Owasco Lake, Skaneateles Lake, and Otisco Lake

Special Fishing Regulations for the Finger Lakes
Water Species Open Season Minimum Length Daily Limit Method
All Finger Lakes All species except those listed below Statewide Angling Regulations apply
Northern pike 1st Saturday in May - March 15 22" 5
Walleye 1st Saturday in May - March 15 18" except 15" in Honeoye Lake 3
All Finger Lakes except Cayuga Lake, Otisco Lake, Owasco Lake and Skaneateles Lake Black bass 3rd Sat. in June- March 15 12" 5
March 16 - Friday preceding the 3rd Saturday in June Catch and Release only Artificial lures only
Brown trout, rainbow trout, lake trout, Landlocked salmon All year 15" 5 in combination. Catch shall include no more than 1 rainbow trout or 3 landlocked salmon
Owasco Lake, Cayuga Lake, Otisco Lake, Skaneateles Lake, Honeoye Brown trout, rainbow trout, lake trout, Landlocked salmon All year 15" Except 12" for Brown Trout in Otisco Lake, and 18" for Landlocked salmon in Cayuga Lake 5 in combination. Catch shall include no more than 3 lake trout or 3 Landlocked salmon
Otisco Lake Tiger Muskellunge 1st Sat. in May - March 15 36" 1
Honeoye Lake, Skaneateles Lake Alewife (sawbellies) Possession prohibited

Finger Lakes Tributary Regulations

Special Fishing Regulations for Finger Lakes Tributaries
Water Species Open Season Minimum Length Daily Limit Method
All tributaries to Canadice Lake, Canandaigua Lake, Hemlock Lake, Keuka Lake, and Seneca Lake upstream to the first barrier impassable by fish Lake trout, brown trout, rainbow trout, landlocked salmon April 1 - December 31 15" 3 in combination catch shall include no more than 1 rainbow trout
All other species Open season, daily limit and minimum length regulations that are in effect for the Finger Lakes
All tributaries to Owasco Lake, Otisco Lake and Skaneateles Lake upstream to the first barrier impassable by fish except tributaries listed below Lake trout, brown trout, rainbow trout, landlocked salmon April 1 - December 31 9" except 15" for lake trout and landlocked salmon 3 in combination
All tributaries to Cayuga Lake upstream to the first barrier impassable by fish except tributaries listed below Lake trout, brown trout, rainbow trout, landlocked salmon April 1 - December 31 15" except 18" for landlocked salmon 3 in combination
Fall Creek (Cayuga Lake) from the downstream edge of the railroad bridge below Rt. 13 to Ithaca Falls Lake trout, brown trout, rainbow trout, landlocked salmon April 1 - December 31 15" except 18" for landlocked salmon 3 in combination
Jan 1 - March 15 Catch and Release only Artificial lures only; angling prohibited between sunset and sunrise
March 16 - March 31 Angling prohibited
Spafford Creek (Otisco Lake) upstream to the first barrier impassable by fish Trout April 1 - October 15 Any size 5 with no more than 2 longer than 12"

Additional Regulations for Finger Lakes Tributaries

  1. Any action to frighten fish and move them from concealment, including herding, driving, kicking, and stoning is prohibited.
  2. Angling is prohibited from January 1 through March 31, and between sunset and sunrise from April 1 through May 15 and October 1 through December 31, except for those stream sections listed below.
  3. Possession of gaff hooks and landing nets larger than 50" around the frame or with handles longer than 20" is prohibited, except for those stream sections as listed.
  4. Use of more than one line with a single hook point is prohibited, except for those stream sections listed below.
  5. Possession of hooks with a gap greater than 1/2" is prohibited, except for those stream sections listed below.

Stream sections for which additional tributary regulations 2, 3, 4, and 5 above do not apply (trout season is closed January 1 through March 31 in these sections):

  • West River, Sucker Brook from Canandaigua Lake upstream in Ontario County;
  • Guyanoga Creek from Keuka Lake upstream to route 54A bridge in Yates County;
  • Cayuga Inlet and flood control channel from Cayuga Lake upstream to posted "No Fishing" boundary below the Fishway in Tompkins County;
  • Old Barge Canal from Seneca Lake upstream to northernmost Route 14 bridge in Montour Falls, Schuyler County.
  • Yawgers Creek from Cayuga Lake upstream to abandoned Lehigh Valley RR bridge in Cayuga County;
  • Owasco Inlet from Owasco Lake upstream 2/3 mile to marked boundary at old railroad bed in Cayuga County.
  • Fall Creek from Cayuga Lake to downstream edge of the railroad bridge below Rt 13 in Ithaca, Tompkins County.
  • Note: Dutch Hollow Brook from Owasco Lake to Rt 38A fishing or dip-netting prohibited from March 16 to the opening of walleye season.