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The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has added a link to a translation service developed by Microsoft Inc., entitled Bing Translator, as a convenience to visitors to the DEC website who speak languages other than English.

Additional information can be found at DEC's Language Assistance Page.

Central Park Lake

Central Park Lake offers an opportunity to experience nature within NYC

Without a doubt, Central Park Lake offers the most diverse freshwater fishing experience in Manhattan. The meandering shoreline of this 18-acre water body varies from rocky to grassy to treelined and creates a variety of aquatic habitats for at least nine different species of freshwater fish. And that's not all: if you're looking to catch big fish, Central Park Lake is the place for you.

Physical Features

Area: 18 acres
Approximate average depth: 4 - 6 feet

Access

Shoreline access is available at many locations around the lake. Central Park Lake is very popular, so take care when casting your line to avoid interfering with other anglers and pedestrians.

Fishing Information

To catch a good-sized largemouth bass, try a soft plastic bait like a plastic worm or a hard plastic bait such as stickbait (plastic fish with treble hooks). Panfish, including the top-sized yellow perch of this lake, can be caught using a bobber and worm. Remember to tamp down all barbs on hooks as New York City regulations require the use of barbless hooks.

Species Present

For more information on these fish species, visit the page on Freshwater Fishes.

Largemouth bass
Black crappie
Yellow perch
Bluegill
Pumpkinseed
Carp
Brown bullhead
Golden shiner
Common shiner

Special Regulations

Special regulations apply.

New York City Department of Parks and Recreation rules require the use of non-lead weights and barbless hooks.

Fisheries Survey Summary

The electrofishing catch per hour for largemouth bass 15 inches and larger, as determined during a May 2009 fisheries survey, was found to be one of the best for NYC waters (see table below). Bass were not the only large fish found. Central Park Lake has yielded the largest-sized yellow perch of any New York City waterbody during DEC Fisheries surveys performed within the last decade. While yellow perch are known to be tasty as well as fun to catch, be aware state and city regulations require all freshwater fish to be returned, unharmed, to the waterbody in which they were caught.

Largemouth Bass Catch/Hour for Eight New York City Water Bodies (table updated 2013)
Waterbody 8" and over 12" and over 15" and over
Baisley Pond 23 19 10
Central Park Lake 18 15 9
Harlem Meer 177 34 7
Indian Lake 20 20 1
Kissena Lake 23 12 4
Oakland Lake 18 8 5
Prospect Park Lake 87 21 11
Van Cortlandt Lake 109 19 6
Willowbrook Lake 110 57 3