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Commercial black bass regulations changed by DEC

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The state Department of Environmental Conservation will make it easier to sell hatchery-raised largemouth bass as food by allowing those who purchase from licensed hatcheries to resell the fish within the state.

Under current regulations, only licensed hatchery operators can sell black bass in New York. Hatchery-reared smallmouth bass and largemouth bass may still be sold for stocking purposes, as presently provided for, but smallmouth bass cannot be sold as food.

The adopted regulations include requirements for labeling largemouth bass containers used for transportation, retaining purchase and sale records by distributors and requiring largemouth bass be killed before being sold to customers in retail markets. Bass being sold for stocking in state waters must come from sources that are free of harmful fish pathogens, a rule in place since 2006.

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