If you’ve ever wanted to try out fishing but aren’t sure you want to buy a fishing license, the day for you to piddle in Alabama waters is coming up on Saturday, June 8, 2024.

Alabama residents and out-of-state visitors can fish without a license in most public waters, including freshwater and saltwater.

‘Free Fishing Day’ allows locals and non-residents to enjoy the outstanding fishing Alabama has to offer without purchasing a fishing license. The event is part of ‘National Fishing and Boating Week,’ which runs June 1-9.

“Free Fishing Day is the perfect opportunity for anyone who has never experienced casting a line to give it a try,” said Chris Blankenship, Commissioner of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR). “Fishing provides many mental and physical health benefits as well as access to a sustainable, healthy source of protein. It’s also a great way for families to spend time together outdoors. We encourage anyone with an interest in fishing to take advantage of this outdoor recreation opportunity.”

There are four notable exceptions to the "free" in Free Fishing Day. One, red snapper fishing. Two, state Public Fishing Lakes. Three, private ponds. Four, some piers that require fees and permits.

Free Fishing Day takes place during Alabama’s red snapper season, which started May 24. While fishing license requirements are waived for Free Fishing Day, red snapper fishermen still need the $10 Gulf Reef Fish Endorsement. For more information, visit www.outdooralabama.com/fishing/saltwater-recreational-size-creel-limits.

Alabama’s State Public Fishing Lakes still require a fishing permit on Free Fishing Day, and fishing in a private pond requires the owner’s permission. Some piers may also require fees and permits. Anglers looking for a new public fishing spot are encouraged to explore the fishing section of www.outdooralabama.com.

“If you fish and catch nothing, you have still caught a lesson.” ― Matshona Dhliwayo #BearPointHarbor 📍 Orange Beach.

Jim ‘Zig’ Zeigler’s beat is the colorful and positive about Alabama. He writes about Alabama people, places, events, groups and prominent deaths. He is a former Alabama Public Service Commissioner and State Auditor. You can reach him for comments at ZeiglerElderCare@yahoo.com.

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