Pennsylvania may not be the first state that comes to mind when you think about commercial fishing. In truth, however, the Keystone state is home to a robust commercial and industrial fishing industry. When you look at the numbers, it makes a lot of sense. Pennsylvania encompasses 470,000 acres of Lake Erie, which offers bountiful fishing opportunities. There are also 4,000 lakes and ponds, as well as 86,000 miles of streams and rivers within state boundaries. If you are considering launching a business that capitalizes on Pennsylvania’s commercial fishing offerings, you are going to want to sort out a few formalities first.
You will want to make sure that you have a boat that can handle the demands of your business. This also means having the rods, lines, and safety equipment to properly outfit your crew. Next, you are going to want to form a business plan. What are you going to catch? Where are you planning to sell it? These are valid questions that you will want to answer. You will also need to make sure that you have the proper commercial fishing permits.
Pennsylvania Commercial Fishing: Different Types of Permits
Just as there are different types of fish to catch, so too are there different permits that you will need to fish in Pennsylvania. All permits are issued by the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC), and, more specifically, the Division of Fisheries Management. As the department’s name would suggest, they are tasked with overseeing the state’s fisheries. This means regulating who can use them and when. While this may seem like bureaucratic red tape, it is important to remember that their mission is to conserve the future viability of Pennsylvania’s fisheries.
Maybe your commercial fishing business is centered around providing charters and guided outings? In this case, you will need to obtain a Charter Boat/Fishing Guide Permit Application, also called a PFBC-G-1. A more standard lake fishing commercial operation will need to acquire an Application for Regulated Fishing Lake License (PFBC-109).
If your business plans to make use of Lake Erie, you will need a specific permit. The Lake Erie Trap Net License or Seine License Application for Commercial Fishing License (PFBC-171) will grant you the legal access necessary to fish on Pennsylvania’s Great Lake waters.
These permits can all be obtained via the PFBC. You can visit their website, source the correct PDF files, download them, print them out, ink them by hand, and mail them to the proper state office for processing.
We Can Help You Get Commercial Fishing Permits Online
Fortunately, there is an easier way to obtain all of the fishing permits that you need online. At the Commercial Fishing Permits Center, we feature a wide array of web applications to get all of the commercial fishing licenses you need on one convenient website. Take a moment to explore our navigation–you will see that we have easy-to-fill web forms for licenses in all major U.S. regions. If you would like to learn more about our services, contact us by phone or email today.