Requirements To Transport And Sell Black Bass
This page summarizes the transportation and sale of hatchery reared black bass (largemouth and smallmouth) regulations - Title 6 NYCRR Part 155.1 (leaves DEC website). If you wish to purchase, sell, or transport hatchery reared black bass, please review the regulation carefully.
The regulation explicitly authorizes:
- Hatchery reared smallmouth and largemouth bass to be transported and sold for stocking or exhibition purposes.
- Hatchery reared largemouth bass only to be sold, transported, and distributed for human consumption.
Requirements for Selling Black Bass
Black bass may be sold by the following entities:
- DEC permitted black bass hatcheries
- DEC licensed fishing preserves
- Wholesale distributors or transporters
(Note: No special license or permit is required for wholesale distributors or transporters, but they must possess an original bill of sale for the fish they possess and comply with all transportation and record keeping requirements detailed in the regulations)
- Markets and restaurants
Selling black bass for stocking purposes:
- The bass (largemouth or smallmouth) must originate from a hatchery permitted by DEC
- The seller (permitted hatchery) must provide the following to the purchaser:
- a sales receipt with the name of the retail seller, date of sale, name(s) of species sold, and quantity of each species sold.
- copy of the Fish Health Certification Report certifying the fish to be disease free.
Learn more about fish health certifications.
- The shipping container must be marked "black bass"
Selling black bass for human consumption (largemouth bass only):
- Sellers must issue a bill of sale to purchasers
- Sellers must retain copies of their purchase and sales records for two years
- Sellers are required to kill all largemouth bass before transferring possession to the final customer
Requirements for Purchasing Black Bass for Human Consumption
Only largemouth bass may be purchased for human consumption. The purchaser must be issued a receipt by the seller, and must keep the receipt until the fish is prepared for consumption.
A Fish Health Certification Report is not required for largemouth bass being sold for human consumption; however, live largemouth bass being shipped into New York from viral hemorrhagic septicemia (VHS) affected or at risk regions (Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and the Canadian Provinces of Ontario and Quebec) must meet the requirements of the April 2008 APHIS Amended Federal Order (PDF), which governs movements (shipments) of VHS susceptible species of live fish. These fish may need to be tested for VHS.
Black Bass Hatcheries
To learn how to become a permitted facility, visit the hatchery permit and application page.
Black bass hatcheries are DEC permitted commercial operations (in-state or out-of-state) in which black bass are bred, propagated, or otherwise cultured for sale or trade in New York. The facility must possess hatchery rearing equipment (such as buildings, tanks, raceways or other structures).
Bass raised in hatcheries outside of New York may be transported into New York provided the fish were obtained from a NYSDEC permitted facility, and that the transporter complies with the record keeping requirements specific in the regulations.
Record Keeping Requirements
Detailed requirements for record keeping including, bills of sale, receipts, and other important elements are specified in Title 6 NYCRR Part 155.1 regulations (leaves DEC website).
For further questions, call DEC's Bureau of Fisheries at 518-402-8890 or send an email.