I FISH NY serves to increase fishing participation and awareness of the outstanding fishing opportunities that New York has to offer. The program introduces people to the sport of angling through a variety of different approaches.
Look below to find a program that meets your needs.
Organized Group Fishing Education Programs
For: Summer camps, after-school groups, outdoor clubs, and scout programs; All ages and abilities
Locations Offered: Statewide
Details: DEC educators provide fishing instruction and teach about fish species, fish anatomy, fishing regulations, fishing licenses, and more. During these programs, bait is provided and gear is available to borrow for free.
More Information/Scheduling: Contact the DEC Regional Office for your county
In-School Fishing Education Programs
For: Grade school classrooms three and up
Locations Offered: Long Island and New York City only
Details: DEC educators visit classrooms and teach from a variety of lesson plans covering topics on fish anatomy, fish classification and adaptations, and food webs. Students later participate in a fishing trip to a local water body where fishing instruction, gear, and bait are provided. Schools are responsible for student transportation, an adult to student ratio no less than 1:5, and any applicable park use fees.
More Information/Scheduling: Contact the DEC Region 1 or Region 2 Office for your county
Fishing Rod Loaner Program
This I FISH NY program offers opportunities for anglers to borrow fishing equipment (rods, bobbers, and hooks) for free. This is a great way for beginner anglers to get started and familiar with the sport of fishing before purchasing their own equipment.
Borrowing Fishing Equipment
- Find a participating location near you to rent spin casting rods, bobbers, and hooks.
- Individuals 16 years or older must have a valid freshwater fishing license.
- A library card may be required. Please call ahead to the participating location.
- Individuals need to use their own bait and must follow New York's freshwater fishing regulations.
Becoming a Provider
Public libraries and public parks are eligible to participate. Email the Bureau of Fisheries for more information on how to become a participating provider in the rod loaner program.
What DEC Supplies to Providers
- Fishing equipment: spin casting rods, bobbers, and hooks.
- Literature on freshwater sportfish, knot tying, casting a fishing rod, and freshwater fishing regulation guides for patrons to take home and keep.
Responsibilities of Providers
- Loan out fishing rods to eligible patrons (children under 16 years old or people holding a valid New York fishing license).
- Maintain a log on how many fishing rods were loaned.
- Maintain the fishing rods. If you do not have someone who can maintain the equipment, we recommend contacting a local sportfishing group (e.g. Trout Unlimited, B.A.S.S., etc.) and ask if they can help.
- A fee cannot be charged for loaning out the rod; however, late return fees can apply.
Find Participating Providers
Currently, providers who lend fishing equipment are in the following counties statewide: