Fishing season opens on April 1

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Time to dig out your tackle boxes. The annual sport-fishing season opens April 1.

"Sport fishing is a great way for families to spend time together and enjoy the outdoors. It also plays an important role in Nova Scotia's economy, contributing $58-million in direct expenditures each year," said Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Keith Colwell.

Colwell said anglers should become familiar with the new regulations for this season. Changes include new management measures, season changes and bag limits to conserve and enhance Nova Scotia's sport fishery.

Regulations are included in the 2014 Angler's Handbook and Summary of Regulations, which accompanies each fishing licence.

More than 100,000 anglers enjoy fishing every year, including taking part in free fishing weekends each winter and summer, fishing derbies and tournaments, the Learn to Fish program for youth, and outdoor skill programs like Becoming an Outdoors Woman.

Nova Scotia residents can purchase a seasonal licence for $26.73, taxes included. For non-residents, a seasonal licence is $61.73, and a seven-day licence is $33.72. Seniors' fishing licences are available for $6.57. One-day licences, for residents and non-residents, are $12.71. All anglers 16 or older must purchase a general fishing licence.

Licences can be purchased from many gas retailers, hardware, convenience and sporting goods stores, or at any Access Nova Scotia location. They are valid until March 31, 2015. Anglers must return the licence stub at the end of the season, when they will be eligible for a prize.

A licence is not required to fish in tidal or saltwater in Nova Scotia, but season and bag limits apply. A separate licence is required to sport fish for Atlantic salmon.

More information on angling and a list of special regulations by recreational fishing areas can be found at http://novascotia.ca/fish/documents/2014anglingguide.pdf .

Geographic location: Nova Scotia

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