Fee and Lease Pond Fishing


fish and fishing poleOn the water, there are no cars, no rush hour and no deadlines–just a chance to relax. Whether in conjunction with a rural bed and breakfast operation, a hunting lease venture or as the backdrop for a retreat center, rural wedding or business meeting, a pond is a focal point for natural beauty and human relaxation. This water resource is more than just a novel piece of landscape, it is one of the great overlooked revenue generators for agricultural landowners.

Many landowners across the United States have turned their farm pond or ponds into a resource that is quite attractive to different consumer demographics. These ponds are stocked and managed to provide fee-fishing opportunities to parents who wish to have a quality experience with their young children, professionals who wish to get away with business clients, families interested in an interesting alternative to a traditional reunion and as a local environmental educational resource for primary school educators..  July 2014 ... Fee and Lease Pond Fishing

Other Links

  • Commercial Trout Aquaculture in Western North Carolina: Trout Fee-Fishing Ponds, North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service, updated 2006 - A list of operations by county with contact information.
  • Developing a Fee-Fishing Enterprise: An Opportunity in Recreational Tourism, University of Maryland Cooperative Extension, 1998 - Contains an enterprise budget breakdown and a discussion of potential impacts on other on-farm operations.
  • Farm Pond Management for Recreational Fishing, Cooperative Extension Program, University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, USDA and county governments in cooperation with the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.
  • Fee Fishing in Florida, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Describes the various types of fishing license and the cost associated with each license. 
  • Fisheries, Virginia Cooperative Extension - Online publications on a range of topics: (1) Clearing Muddy Pond Waters; (2) Control Methods For Aquatic Plants in Ponds and Lakes; (3) Pond Construction: Some Practical Considerations; and (4)The Control of Burrowing Crayfish in Ponds.
  • Fish Management in New York Ponds, Cornell University Cooperative Extension - Numerous online publications on pond establishment and management.
  • 4-H Virtual (Fish) Farm, Virginia Cooperative Extension Service, Virginia Tech and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University - Fish and seafood are cash crops for many farmers. Fish are raised for food, bait and pets. Farmers sell the fish they raise to processors, grocery stores and restaurants. Many farmers also raise fish in ponds and charge people a fee to fish.
  • How can I learn to fish?, Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) - Learn how to fish and prepare your catch for cooking.
  • Management of Recreational and Farm Ponds in Louisiana, Louisiana State University, 2003 - This publication reviews planning considerations and management recommendations relating to a number of potential uses for small ponds.
  • Outlook for Outdoor Recreation in the Northern United States, U.S. Forest Service, USDA, September 2013 - This study develops projections of participation and use for 17 nature-based outdoor recreation activities in the northern United States. Fishing, visiting interpretive sites, motorized boat use, downhill skiing and horseback riding are projected to experience the most growth in per capita participation.
  • Private Pond Management, Virginia Department of Game & Inland Fisheries, 2005 - Ponds can provide angling opportunities as good as, or in many cases better than, public waters. The purpose of this publication is to assist the pond owner in pursuit of healthy sportfish populations.


  • United States Trout Farmers Association - USTFA is the oldest commercial aquaculture trade organization in the United States. Since its organization by a group of trout farmers, the association has created a strong, unified voice for the national trout industry. It now has members in nearly every state and many foreign countries.

Businesses/Case Studies

  • Rushing Waters Fisheries, Palmyra, Wisconsin - This fee-fishing enterprise has a Web site with photos of the resources and multiple tabs that cover topics including group availability, fish species, pricing and various services.
  • Fish-in Barrel, White Hall, Maryland - Example of a fee-fishing business that offers a number of species. The Web site includes a downloadable color brochure.
  • Rainbow Trout Farm, Sandy, Oregon - This youth- and family-oriented enterprise has 30 acres of trees and meadows, and ten landscaped fishing holes stocked with rainbow trout. The cedar and brick hospitality room, located at the water’s edge, is available for special events.

Link checked June 2018.