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Gone (free) fishing: No license required Saturday in Alabama

HUNTSVILLE – Inclement weather washed out the 40th annual Wally Vess Fishing Rodeo at Big Spring Park last Saturday, but the one ahead will provide another opportunity for potential anglers across the state for free.

Free Fishing Day 2024 for Alabama is Saturday. Residents and out-of-state visitors alike will have the opportunity to fish for free in most public waters including both freshwater and saltwater without purchasing a fishing license. The event is part of National Fishing and Boating Week, which ends Sunday.

(Chris Blankenship/Facebook)

“Free Fishing Day is the perfect opportunity for anyone who has never experienced casting a line to give it a try,” said Chris Blankenship, commissioner of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. “Fishing provides many mental and physical health benefits as well as access to a sustainable, healthy source of protein. It’s also a great way for families to spend time together outdoors.

“We encourage anyone with an interest in fishing to take advantage of this outdoor recreation opportunity.”

Free Fishing Day takes place during Alabama’s red snapper season. Saltwater anglers will not need a saltwater fishing license or reef fish endorsement Saturday. Fishing license and reef fish endorsement requirements will be in effect for the remainder of the year.

Alabama’s State Public Fishing Lakes still require a fishing permit on Free Fishing Day, and fishing in a private pond requires the pond owner’s permission. Some piers may also require fees and permits. Anglers looking for a new public fishing spot are encouraged to explore the fishing section of www.outdooralabama.com.

National Fishing and Boating Week, an annual celebration of the benefits of fishing and boating, takes place the first week of June every year. 

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