Department of Environmental Conservation

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Central NY Fishing

Central New York encompasses a nine county area and offers a very diverse fishery from Lake Ontario in the north to the Susquehanna River in the south. There are a variety of rivers, streams, lakes and ponds spread throughout Central New York. Four of New York's Finger Lakes (Cayuga, Owasco, Skaneateles and Otisco) lie within the region. Some other popular water bodies include Oneida Lake, Whitney Point Reservoir, the world famous Salmon River, Oswego River, Tioughnioga River and Chittenango Creek. These are just a few of the many water bodies found within Central New York. This habitat diversity provides anglers with a wide selection of fish species to choose from. Central New York has produced eight New York State fishing records and two world records.

a woman holding a large brown trout

With the diversity of species and habitats in Central New York anglers have the option to fish in many ways, from wading a small remote stream for wild brook trout to trolling miles off shore on Lake Ontario for trophy king salmon. Anglers can pursue their favorite species by boat, from shore, by wading or on the ice.

Angling options include:

  • fishing the open water in the Finger Lakes year-round
  • ice-fishing
  • fishing streams with year round trout seasons
  • fishing tributaries to Lake Ontario throughout the winter. Additionally there is a catch and release bass season that makes that a year round fishery as well.

Trout Fishing Opportunities in Region 7

Visit DECinfo Locator - Interactive Trout Stream Fishing Map (Decinfo Locator is best viewed on a desktop computer)
for information on trout stream fishing, including Public Fishing Rights (PFR).

DECinfo Locator Trout Stream Fishing Map User Guide ("How to" instructions for using the fishing map on Decinfo Locator.)

Access for Anglers with Disabilities

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Read about accessible fishing piers, platforms and launches that provide access to waters in Central New York.

Fishing Hotline

NYSDEC provides a fishing hotline that is updated weekly which provides current fishing information for selected waters in Region 7. The hotline can be viewed at Central New York Fishing Hotline or heard by calling 607-753-1551.

Finger Lakes Angler Diary Program

The NYSDEC Region 7 Fisheries unit is responsible for fisheries management in Central New York. Region 7, along with Region 8, has an Angler Diary Program for the Finger Lakes and their tributaries. Region 7 covers Otisco, Owasco, Skaneateles and Cayuga, while Region 8 covers Seneca, Keuka, Canandaigua, Honeoye, Canadice, Hemlock, and Conesus Lakes. Volunteer anglers keep track of the hours they fish and the fish they catch. This information is used to help manage the Finger Lakes fisheries. Yearly summaries are available to view on line and we are always looking for more volunteer anglers, if interested click on the Angler Diary Cooperator Program link below.

Some Trout Streams in Central NY

Fishing Access Information for Central New York

Rivers in Central New York

Lakes and Ponds in Multiple Counties

Broome County Lakes and Ponds

Cayuga County Lakes and Ponds

Chenango County Lakes and Ponds

Cortland County Lakes and Ponds

Madison County Lakes and Ponds

Onondaga County Lakes and Ponds

Oswego County Lakes and Ponds

Tioga County Lakes and Ponds

Tompkins County Lakes and Ponds

Ice Fishing in Region 7