California Fishing License

The California Fishing License category covers everything you need to legally and responsibly enjoy fishing in the Golden State. Learn about license requirements, costs, types, regulations, seasons, limits, and more for freshwater and saltwater fishing. Get tips on where to fish across CA. Stay updated on changes to licenses, regulations, and fish populations. Master CA fishing with info direct from the CA Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Duplicate California Fishing

Obtaining a Duplicate California Fishing License Made Easy

Misplaced your CA fishing license? Our comprehensive guide shows you how to easily obtain a replacement fishing license online or in-person, covering fees, requirements, and tips to avoid future losses. Get back on the water fast with teenfish.com.


Anyone 16 years of age or older must have a valid California fishing license to fish in the state’s fresh and ocean waters. This applies to both residents and non-residents. A few exceptions include fishing on Free Fishing Days and fishing from public ocean piers.

California offers several license types:

  • Annual resident and non-resident sport fishing licenses
  • Short-term licenses (1-day or 2-day)
  • Reduced-fee licenses for low-income seniors, disabled veterans, etc.
  • Lifetime fishing licenses for residents
  • Additional report cards may be needed for certain species

Prices vary based on license type and residency. As of 2024, key costs are:

  • Annual resident license: $58.58
  • Annual non-resident license: $158.25
  • 1-day license: $19.18
  • 2-day license: $29.42
  • Lifetime license: $644.50 – $1054.25 based on age

Additional validations and report cards have separate fees.

You can buy a license:

  • Online through the CA Dept. of Fish and Wildlife website
  • From authorized local license agents like sporting goods stores
  • At CDFW license sales offices throughout the state

Be prepared with proof of residency if applicable. Online purchases require a credit card.

You can obtain a duplicate fishing license for a small fee through a license agent or CDFW office. Avoid laminating your license, as heat can destroy it. Always keep your license on you while fishing.

In addition to licensing, important regulations include:

  • Daily bag and possession limits for each species
  • Minimum and maximum size limits
  • Seasonal closures for certain species and locations
  • Gear and bait restrictions
  • Protected areas closed to fishing

Consult the current California Ocean Sport Fishing Regulations booklet for full details before fishing.

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