See fishing rules and regulations

  • Yukon fishing rules and regulations
  • Important fishing regulations changes for 2018-19
  • ​First Nations fishing regulations
  • ​Important fishing terms

Learn the must-know regulations for fishing and angling in Yukon. Includes key Yukon fishing regulations, regulation changes and First Nation fishing regulations.

  1. Yukon fishing rules and regulations

    You must have a valid fishing licence and follow the fishing regulations to fish in Yukon. Download the Yukon fishing regulations summary to see these regulations. This publication is also available in German

    Key Yukon fishing regulations

    These are key regulations anglers in Yukon must follow. You can see all of the regulations in the Yukon fishing regulations summary.

    Fishing licence-related regulations

    You must have a valid Yukon fishing licence, unless you qualify for an exemption. See Get a Yukon fishing licence for details.

    It is against the law to use another person’s fishing licence or Salmon Conservation Catch Card, or allow another person to use yours. You must carry your licence and Salmon Conservation Catch Card with you and produce it when asked by a conservation or fishery officer.

    In addition to your valid Yukon fishing licence you must:

    • Have a valid Salmon Conservation Catch Card if you intend to fish for any salmon, except kokanee salmon in lakes.
    • Have a sport fishing licence (free) if you are:
      • fishing using a dip net or set line;
      • fishing at Tetl’ámǟn (Tatlmain Lake) or Wellesley Lake; or
      • snagging cisco for bait off the Tagish Bridge or Carcross Foot Bridge (Nares River)
    • Get a special licence for fishing derbies. Contact the Fisheries Unit at 867-667-5721 for licensing information for fishing derbies.
    • Get a national park fishing licence if you plan on fishing in Kluane, Ivvavik or Vuntut national parks. Phone 867-634-7250 or see Kluane and Ivvavik for details.

    Other fishing regulations

    • Be aware of fishery closures. You can't fish in these waters.
    • Know and follow the catch, possession and size limits for the species you are fishing and waters you are fishing in. If you catch a fish that the regulations do not allow you to keep, you must return it to the water in the least harmful manner — even if the fish seems to be fatally injured. It is against the law to be in possession of any fish in violation of the size or catch limits.
    • Only use the type of hooks and lures permitted for the species and area.
    • It is illegal to:
      • use more than 1 line except for ice fishing when you can use 2 lines;
      • use live fish as bait; 
      • bring live fish, uncured fish eggs, crayfish, leeches or other water creatures into Yukon or transfer live fish, fish eggs, or other aquatic organisms from 1 body of water to another without a permit. See Stop aquatic invasive species for more information.
      • buy, sell or barter fish caught under the authority of a Yukon fishing licence or domestic fishing licence.
      • leave a fishing line unattended when angling. A line is attended when the angler is nearby and has a direct line of sight on it. This applies to open-water fishing and ice fishing.
      • fish within 23 metres (75 feet) downstream of the Whitehorse Rapids Fish Ladder.

    If you have questions about Yukon fishing regulations, email fisheries@gov.yk.ca or phone 867-667-5721 or toll free in Yukon 1-800-661-0408, ext. 5721.

  2. Important fishing regulations changes for 2018-19

    Changes to Yukon fishing regulations came into effect April 1, 2018.

    Waters with new regulations

    Fish Lake and Little Salmon Lake

    • Lake trout daily and possession limit changed to 1 fish 65 cm (26”) or shorter.
    • Arctic grayling daily and possession limit changed to 4. Fish 40 to 48 cm (16 to 19”) in length must be released; only 1 longer than 48 cm (19”) allowed.

    See page 21 (section G) in the Yukon fishing regulations summary for more details.

    Lake Laberge, Mayo Lake, Nares Lake and Nares River

    • Lake trout daily and possession limit changed to 2 fish. Fish 65 to 100 cm (26 to 39”) in length must be released; only 1 longer than 100 cm (39”) allowed.
    • Arctic grayling daily and possession limit changed to 4. Fish 40 to 48 cm (16 to 19”) in length must be released; only 1 longer than 48 cm (19”) allowed.
    • Northern pike daily and possession limit changed to 4. Fish 75 to 105 cm (30 to 41”) in length must be released; only 1 longer than 105 cm (41”) allowed.

    See page 16 in the Yukon fishing regulations summary for more details.

    Ladue Lake

    • Lake trout daily and possession limit changed to 1 fish 65 cm (26”) or shorter.
    • Arctic grayling daily and possession limit changed to 2 fish 40 cm (16”) or shorter.
    • Northern pike daily and possession limit changed to 4 fish 75 cm (30”) or shorter.

    See page 19 (section C) in the Yukon fishing regulations summary for more details.

    If you have questions about these regulation changes or other Yukon fishing regulations, email fisheries@gov.yk.ca or phone 867-667-5721 or toll free in Yukon 1-800-661-0408, ext. 5721.

  3. ​First Nations fishing regulations

    Most Yukon First Nations have a Final Agreement in place that sets out harvesting rights. This includes fishing rights. Maps showing Traditional Territories are available online or at your First Nation office, the Council of Yukon First Nations or  Department of Environment offices.

    These regulations apply if you are a beneficiary of a Yukon First Nation with a Final Agreement and you will be fishing for subsistence (food) in your Traditional Territory. You:

    • must follow your First Nation’s rules about harvest limits or reporting;
    • don't need a Yukon fishing licence;
    • don't need a domestic fishing licence to set a net; and
    • are subject to the conditions of your First Nation’s communal fishing licence when fishing for salmon.

    These regulations apply if you are a beneficiary of a Yukon First Nation with a Final Agreement and you will be fishing for subsistence (food) in the Traditional Territory of another First Nation with a Final Agreement (not including overlap areas). You need:

    • the written consent of the other First Nation and you must follow their rules about harvest limits or reporting;
    • a Yukon fishing licence and must follow Yukon fishing regulations if you don't have consent;
    • the written consent of the other First Nation and you must follow their rules to set a net; and
    • written consent and you are subject to the conditions of that First Nation’s communal fishing licence when fishing for salmon.

    These regulations apply if you will be fishing for subsistence (food) in the Traditional Territory of another First Nation without a Final Agreement, or in overlap areas. You need:

    • a Yukon fishing licence and must follow Yukon fishing regulations; and
    • a Yukon fishing licence and a Salmon Conservation Catch Card when fishing for salmon.

    Fishing gear: Mark your name and the name of your First Nation on each gill net, fish trap and set box so fishery and conservation officers and game guardians know that it is legal.

    If you have further questions about your rights and responsibilities when subsistence fishing email environmentyukon@gov.yk.ca or phone 867-667-5652 or toll free in Yukon 1-800-661-0408, ext. 5652.

  4. ​Important fishing terms

    These terms will help you understand the Yukon fishing regulations. See the fishing regulations summary for more helpful definitions, fish species identification, tips on live release angling and more.

    Angling: Angling is fishing with a hook and line whether a rod is used or not. It does not include fishing with a set line.

    Daily limit: the number of fish that may be caught and retained in a 24-hour period from one midnight to the next midnight. Also known as daily catch limit.

    Fish size. Size limits apply to some species. The length of a fish is the distance from the tip of a fish’s snout to the tip of its tail. All fish less than 20 cm (8”) in length, caught by angling, must be returned to the water in the least harmful manner. See the Yukon fishing regulations summary to learn tricks for measuring fish.

    Possession: having an item in your personal custody, the custody of another person, or in any other place for the benefit of yourself or anyone else.

    Possession limit: the total number of fish that an individual may have in their possession, including the freezer at home.