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Ice fishing laws, rules & reg.s

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Retired ECO:
To all that are waiting for the hard water, I hoped that I would have several ruling on ice fishing regulations by now from Albany. The new Director of Law enforcement, Bob Lucas is reviewing questions on ice fishing equipment this week with his staff. I personally know Bob and he is a straight shooter and very sportsman friendly. The Conservation Commissioner could not have chosen a better candidate. I was hoping for these ruling prior to the "Pro Bass" ice fishing weekend, not going to happen. I will attempt to get "Pro Bass" to hold another seminar as soon as I receive the information from Albany. I would be willing to facilitate same if they want me to. I will also discuss some of the ATV regulations and answer questions.

keep us up to date!!

keep up the good work eco....a real asset to this board!!!!!


here is a quote from TJC on the slammer issue and an e-mail he recieved from robert lucas. i will post the thred at the bottom

Here is the write up on
maybe this will help they are makers of slammer tipups
Q: Are Slammer Tip-Ups classified as "tip-ups" or "fishing rods" by the State of New York??

A: Attached Message
From:     Robert Lucas
To:     [email protected]
Subject:     "Slammer" question
Date:     Mon, 26 Sep 2005 18:03:33 -0400

Hi Fisherman,

We have had numerous questions similar to yours over the years as different
tip-up types and modifications have appeared.  Here's my take on this subject,
and I acknowledge up front that I am biased in favor of the fisherman, both
because I fish and because I think the sportsman should be given every
opportunity and every consideration when we can allow a new technique, tool or
method.    My take on the Slammer:   it is clearly designed to be used without
constant tending or handling by the angler.  It is designed to operate in the
same fashion as a tip-up, in that it just sits there until a fish takes the bait
and trips the device to signal the angler that there has been fish activity.
After the device has been tripped the fisherman comes over and pulls the fish
out through the ice.  We must remember that there is no definition of tip-up or
fishing rod. The law ( 11-0103-12(b) ) states that each fisherman is allowed to
use two lines, with or without rod.  Regulations (NYCRR 10.4) allow a fisherman,
when fishing through the ice to use five tip-ups in addition to two hand lines.
However neither the law or rules and regs provide a definition of what a tip-up
is or is not.  As you know, tip-ups now come in all kinds of different shapes,
configurations, styles and operational methods. There are even "tip-downs" that
we have allowed fisherman to use over the years.  Because there is such a wide
range of types I think that we would have a very difficult time in court trying
to articulate what a tip-up is or that the "Slammer" is not. And the bottom line
is why do we want to restrict what fisherman can classify as a tip-up?  What
benefit do we or the resource gain? In this instance I think we can hang our hat
on the fact that this is a device that is set up and then activated by the fish
biting the bait and causing the device to signal such bite to the fisherman -
just like every other tip-up out there on the ice. The "Slammer" is not designed
to be held in the hand or used like a traditional fishing or jigging rod.
Therefore it is a tip-up.

If you have any further questions please let me know. 

--Director Bob Lucas

Director Robert T. Lucas
NYSDEC Division of Law Enforcement
625 Broadway
Albany, NY 12233-2500
Office (518) 402-8829
Fax     (518) 402-8830
e-mail:  [email protected]

Retired ECO:

 Just received an e-mail, attached was Albany's answer to several questions on tip-up rules and regulations. This has gone out to all law enforcement personnel in the state. The short of it is that all forms of tip-ups, tip-downs and as "archbishop" found out "slammers" are considered tip-ups. The technical wording for A"TIP-UP" is "any device that is propped up in the air by any means which has a signaling device attached  that will visually/audibly indicate a strike from a distance(other than a bobber floating on top of the water)

  A " HAND LINE "   will be anything that the fisherman is in immediate attendance of, that is not supported in the air in order to facilitate any type of signaling device that will visually/audibly indicate a strike from a distance (a floating bobber on top of the water is ok).

  Example: So, a tip-up which is folded up and laying on the ice should be considered as one of the two additional hand lines allowed. As long as they are in immediate attendance and no other problems exist, no violation should be written.

  This is exactly the way it is going out to the field officers.
  You have five "signaling devices" and one jigging rod in hand and one rod on a pail close by "dead stick" with a bobber on the water loaded with minnows. You would be in compliance with the law !!!!


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