Fishing period

The salmon fishing season on the Bonaventure River ZEC begins June 1 and ends on September 30.

The catch and retention of small salmon (30 cm to less than 63 cm) is allowed throughout the season. The daily limit is two (2) small salmon. The release of large salmon (63 cm and over) is mandatory throughout the fishing season.

During the fishing season, it is permitted to fish from one (1) hour before sunrise to one (1) hour after sunset.

Sunrise / Sunset


Salmon fishing license

During the salmon fishing season, an Atlantic salmon fishing license is required to fish for all species of fish on a salmon river.

The holder of a salmon fishing license may catch and keep species other than salmon, within the catch limits of the fishing zone.

An individual under the age of 18 or a student under the age of 24 with a student card can fish on an adult's fishing license. However, the total quantity of fish caught and kept per day must not exceed the amount permitted to the license holder. In addition, the person must fish under the supervision of the license holder.

Residents under the age of 18 who hold a “Pêche en herbe” certificate from the Fondation de la faune du Québec or a “Relève à la Pêche” certificate issued by the Ministry will be able to fish for salmon without holding a fishing license. These young people will have to release the salmon they catch. Possessing access rights to the ZEC is still mandatory.


Other restrictions

An individual may not buy or possess:

  • more than one annual salmon fishing license
  • more than one three-day license for the same period or for overlapping periods
  • a three-day license if he or she has already purchased or possesses an annual license
  • a three-day license if he or she has already caught and kept four salmon in a given year


However, an individual may purchase a new three-day Atlantic salmon fishing licence:

  • if he or she has placed the tag from his or her three-day licence on a salmon and has not yet reached the annual keep limit of four salmon
  •  if the period shown on the licence has expired and the person has not yet reached the annual keep limit of four salmon

A person who has purchased one or more three-day licences and has not yet kept four salmon may purchase an annual licence. However, the number of usable tags on the annual licence will be reduced by the number of Atlantic salmon already caught under the three-day licence(s). For example, a person who has already caught one salmon under a three-day licence can only use three of the four tags on the annual licence, in order to remain within the total number of four salmon kept during the season.

In other words, any combination of annual licences and three-day licences to fish and keep Atlantic salmon can never entitle the holder to catch more than four Atlantic salmon in any given year.


Tagging and registration of salmon

The annual salmon fishing licence is issued with four tags, including one large salmon. The salmon caught and kept must be tagged. The three-days licence is issued with one tag. The licence and the tag are only valid for the 3 consecutive days indicated on the license. During the season, an individual may not under any circumstances catch and keep more than four salmon, including one large salmon on the rivers that allow it (see Catch, possession and length limits).

Anyone who catches and keeps a salmon must immediately detach the valid tag issued with the licence and, using the tags in the order in which they are attached to the license, attach it to the fish. The tag placed on the salmon caught must come from the licence of the fisherman who struck the fish, even if someone else handled the fishing rod when the fish was recovered.

It is prohibited for anyone to have in his possession a salmon caught during sport fishing that has not been tagged. It is prohibited to remove the tag except when the salmon is prepared for consumption.


Mandatory registration of catches

Within 48 hours of leaving the fishing site, a fisherman who catches and keeps a salmon must present in person his or her licence and register the salmon with an authorized individual. The whole or gutted salmon must be presented at the time of registration. The angler must allow it to be weighed and measured, the tag to be punched and samples to be taken or scientific expertise to be applied.


Daily fishing quotas

Annual license of 4 tags:

During the large salmon release period:

  • 2 small salmon caught and kept or 3 caught and released, whichever comes first


Annual release license: Maximum of 3 releases per day


Possession limit

A person may not have caught and kept more than 4 salmon per year, including only 1 large salmon, on the rivers that permit it.

Length limit

The length of a salmon is measured from the tip of the snout to the fork of the tail

  • A small salmon has a fork length between 30 centimetres and less than 63 centimetres
  • A large salmon has 63 centimetres and over
  • During the period of mandatory release of large salmon, only small salmon are permitted to be caught

To consult all the regulations, you can visit the fishing regulations section of the Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs website or consult the fishing brochure for the zone. (In case of disparity, the information from the Ministry takes precedence.)