You are here:   Home » FishMT » Fishing License & Permits

Fishing Licenses & Permits

Angler AIS Prevention Pass:

The Angler AIS Prevention Pass (AISPP) is required for all individuals who fish in Montana. This program was initiated by the 2017 Montana Legislature to help fund the fight against aquatic invasive species in Montana.

The Angler AISPP is $2 for residents and $7.50 for nonresidents and is required with your purchase of a fishing license. There is no fee for youth 15 and younger. Individuals who don’t fish but would like to help in the fight against aquatic invasive species may also purchase the AISPP.

Big Salmon Lake

A valid fishing license is required for all types of fishing on state waters. To fish in Montana, most anglers need two licenses: a Conservation License and a Fishing License.

A Conservation License is needed before you can buy any fishing or hunting license that Fish, Wildlife & Parks (FWP) issues. Conservation license applicants are required to provide their social security number in addition to the information usually requested. A valid driver's license or a valid photo ID is required to purchase a license.

A fishing license allows a person to fish for and possess any fish or aquatic invertebrate authorized by the state's fishing regulations. It is nontransferable and nonrefundable. The license enables one to fish from March 1 through the end of February of the following year.

License Information

The information below will help explain fees for fishing licenses and exemptions.


Resident & Nonresident Fishing License Fees

This section of the Fishing Regulations defines the fees associated with each type of license for residents and nonresidents.


Educational License Exemptions

Fishing license exemptions are available to qualified educational events and fishing clinics. Learn more

Fishing Contests

Fishing Contest Application and Information

A fishing contest permit is required for any event, contest, derby, or tournament where an entry fee is charged or where people may win prizes for catching fish in Montana.

92 KB 141 KB

Reference Guide: Fishing Contest Permits

27 KB

Fishing Contest Report Form

31 KB 21 KB

A report form is required 30 days after contest

Fish Related Licenses, Permits, and Information

Commercial Aquatic

Commercial Fishing Ponds Application

160 KB 141 KB

To sell live fish from a permitted fish pond the pond owner is required to apply for a Commercial Fish Pond License. Learn more

Commercial Bait Seining Application

119 KB 209 KB

Commercial Bait Seining Reporting Form

This year-end report is required. Learn more

76 KB

Commercial Whitefish Application

69 KB 31 KB

Ponds & Streams

Import Permit Application

76 KB 37 KB

All importations of live fish or fish eggs for introduction into any private or public pond, stream, lake, or other water in Montana, or fish transported through Montana, must be accompanied by a permit issued by Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks.

Private Fish Ponds Application

161 KB 93 KB

Private Fish Pond Transfer Application

139 KB 78 KB

A person who owns or lawfully controls a private fish pond may obtain a license from FWP to stock the pond with fish. Koi ponds must be registered with Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks. Learn more

List of approved fish hatcheries (aka commercial fish ponds) for purchasing fish for private ponds.

14 KB

Private Pond License Search

Stream Permitting

If you are planning to do work on or near a waterway in Montana, one or several permits may be required. Refer to the Stream Permitting page for information about permits, guidelines, and maps. Learn more

Scientific Aquatic

Aquatic Scientific Collectors Permit Application

92 KB 141 KB

Reporting Form

An annual report describing the results must be submitted to the Department by December 31 of the year issued. Beginning in 2012, Scientific Collector's Permit holders have been required to provide fish measurements and metadata relating to the sampling.

Electrofishing Form 18 KB

Netting Form 17 KB

Aquatic Scientific Collector Permits are required for any learning institution, government agencies, or individual in order to take, kill, capture or possess any fish in Montana. Learn more