Fishing Licenses in Nevada


A recreational fishing license grants anglers permission to fish in public waters for sport in Nevada. While a sport fishing license condones the use of hooks and lines and the harvest of fish for personal use, a commercial fishing license is required for fisheries and dealers to harvest fish commercially. Additionally, other fishing licenses are required for fishing activities such as fishing in boundary waters.

The NV Department of Wildlife (NDOW) has recently simplified the game fishing license process, but anglers still need to be informed on license requirements. The following sections can answer important questions such as “What is sport fishing license?” and “How much is a sport fishing license?” that can help you determine which licenses to purchase in NV and how to save time and money on your purchase.

Who needs a fishing license in Nevada?

Any resident or nonresident 12 years old or older must have a valid NV freshwater fishing license to perform fishing activities in state waters. A commercial fishing license is given to dealers, fisheries and anglers wishing to guide others in the craft.

Nevada Fishing License Requirements

Requirements for obtaining a game or fishing license include age and residency restrictions. To get a recreational fishing license in NV, you must be at least 12 years old, be either a resident or nonresident of the state and be able to pay the license fees. You must also consent to recreational freshwater fishing license guidelines including all state fishing laws and rules for individual waterbodies.

To be eligible for fishing guide commercial fishing permits in NV, you may need to demonstrate expertise in fishing by attending and completing tests to become sub-guides or master guides. You may find all prerequisites and requirements online for these specialty permits. Additionally, bait dealer commercial fishing licenses require you to officially apply prior to importing or shipping fish.

Types of Fishing Licenses in Nevada

The types of sport fishing licenses offered in NV are as follows:

  • Annual fishing licenses
  • Annual and temporary combination fishing licenses
  • Temporary fishing licenses
  • Interstate boundary waters licenses (non-residents only)

Interstate boundary recreational fishing licenses are only valid on Lake Tahoe, Lake Mohave, Lake Mead, Topaz Lake and the Colorado River.Commercial freshwater fishing permits are available for fishing experts, known as the commercial fishing guide permit, and for fish dealers.

What types of fish can I catch with fishing licenses in Nevada?

With valid commercial or recreational fishing licenses, you may catch numerous freshwater fish. However, a few species of fish you may encounter after receiving your freshwater fishing permit must be reported and returned immediately to ensure their safety and the preservation of the fishery. For instance, razorback sucker and bony tail chub cannot be legally caught because they are endangered species. The most common fish caught with a NV fishing license include striped bass, largemouth bass, rainbow trout, channel catfish, bluegill and black crappie.

What types of fish require special fishing permits or tags in Nevada?

While recreational freshwater fishing licenses distinguish you from poachers,fishing stamps further distinguish you and are placed on fishing licenses for verification. Although you previously had to buy a trout stamp in addition to a resident or non-resident freshwater fishing license in NV to harvest trout, the privilege is now automatically included with the license.

How long is a fishing license valid in Nevada?

Adult, youth, combination game and fish fishing licenses and interstate boundary waters fishing licenses are valid for one year from the purchasing date unless otherwise specified. For example, a one-day freshwater fishing license is only effective for one day following the purchasing date. Additionally, specialty NV fishing licenses, such as senior and disabled licenses,last for one year.

How much does a Nevada fishing license cost?

The freshwater fishing license cost depends on the angler buying the license. If you are an adult (i.e. over 18 years old), you will have to purchase an adult sport fishing license at a higher price than youth license packages for ages 12 to 17. To answer the question, “How much is a freshwater fishing license?” you may refer to the list below:

  • Adult resident freshwater fishing license -$40
  • Adult non-resident freshwater fishing license -$80
  • Adult combination licenses:
    • $75 residents
    • $155 non-residents
  • Youth combination licenses -$15
  • One-day adult fishing permit
    • $9 residents
    • $18 non-residents
  • One-day adult combination licenses (non-residents only) -$23
  • Interstate boundary water licenses -$30

Each consecutive fishing day costs $3 for residents and $7 or $8 for non-residents depending on whether they are both fishing and hunting or not.

The commercial fishing license price may vary. Fishing license fees for commercial live bait dealers is $44. However, non-resident fees for commercial fishing licenses differ from resident fees for master and sub guides. Master fishing guide fees and sub-guide fees can be found online.

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Are fishing license discounts available in Nevada?

You can get discounted recreational fishing licenses by combining your hunting and fishing permits. Additionally, senior, servicemember, disabled and Native American game fishing licenses are specially offered at discounted rates to ensure that more NV residents can fish.

Where can I get a fishing license in Nevada?

You can purchase a recreational fishing license online from the NV Department of Wildlife’s website. To buy a sport fishing license, you may also call by phone. If you wish to visit a fishing license agency near you, to request a permit in person, you may browse online for a list that provides local agencies by NV cities and counties. Because not all areas in the state have fishing license agencies, you must choose the available option that is most convenient for you.

How can I replace my Nevada fishing license?

If you lose or damage your existing NV freshwater fishing license, you are encouraged to contact the NDOW, or visit a local licensing agency to replace it.


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