Second rod stamps allow fishermen and anglers in Colorado to have more than one line in the water while fishing. Without a second rod stamp in your possession, you may only fish using one rod at a time, unless you fishing exclusively with trotlines or jugs.
Adults aged 16 years or older must purchase and have in their possession a fishing license in order to fish or take any fish in Colorado. Youth aged under 16 years old may fish and take a full limit without a license. Seniors aged 64 and older can obtain a fishing license for $1 (.25 search and rescue fee, .75 Wildlife Management Education Fund Surcharge). Everyone who fishes with a second line, MUST obtain a second-rod stamp. A fishing ticket for not having a license (or the right license) can have lasting repercussions on your ability to hunt and fish nationwide.
Colorado Fishing regulations define the daily possession limit for each species of fish that may be taken in the state. Those daily possession limits, and when the fish counts toward your possession limit, must be observed by anglers or they face receiving a Colorado Fishing violation that may end up with costly consequences.
Colorado has many fishing areas that have special regulations on the kinds of methods you may use to fish. One such regulation is that of "Artificial Flies and Lures Only." In 2014, Colorado Parks and Wildlife Officers gave out nearly 100 tickets for "Fishing With Bait in Fly/Lure Only Water." If you are cited for fishing with an unlawful bait your first call should be to your attorney for a free consultation on your rights and defenses. However, let's look a little closer at what exactly this rule means to help avoid this problem in the first place.
Bait is defined in the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Regulations as: "any hand-moldable material designed to attract fish by the sense of taste or smell; those devices to which scents or smell attractants have been added or externally applied (regardless if the scent is added in the manufacturing process or applied afterward); scented manufactured fish eggs and traditional organic baits, including but not limited to worms, grubs, crickets, leeches, dough baits or stink baits, insects, crayfish, human food, fish, fish parts or fish eggs." The definition is unsurprising to most anglers, save for the portion regarding spray attractants. The trouble here is, for most spray attractants that would be applied to otherwise legal flies or lures would leave very little in the way of identifiable scent for a human (CPW officer) to detect. You could just receive the ticket based on having the spray attractant visible in your tackle box even if you're not actually using it.
Artificial flies and lures are defined as: "devices made entirely of, or a combination of, natural or synthetic non-edible, non-scented (regardless if the scent is added in the manufacturing process or applied afterward), materials such as wood, plastic, silicone, rubber, epoxy, glass, hair, metal, feathers, or fiber, designed to attract fish." Again, the definition is not surprising to most anglers but does give a very bright line rule for fishermen and women to consult and follow.
If you do receive a ticket for fishing with bait in fly or lure only water, you need to call The Law Office of Nathaniel Gilbert for a 100% free consultation regarding your rights, defenses, and any repercussions that could come from pleading guilty and paying the fine. Finding out too late that your fishing violation compromised your once in a lifetime elk hunt this fall could be devastating.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife often set up check stations in order to inspect fishermen in Colorado and their gear, vehicles, and landed fish. These check points can be set up anywhere, but are most often situated on the roads leading out of popular fishing areas. While the CPW wardens and officers conducting the check points do have a certain amount of authority, you still retain rights as an individual.
Colorado Revised Statutes 33-6-111 (2) states: The division is authorized to establish check stations, as needed, at locations within the state to aid in the management of wildlife and the enforcement of articles 1 to 6 [of the laws governing hunting and fishing in the state of Colorado]. Persons who encounter check stations, whether in possession of wildlife or not, shall stop and produce licenses issued by the division, firearms, and wildlife for inspection by division personnel. Any person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by a fine of one hundred dollars and an assessment of five license suspension points.
When you approach a check station after fishing, you are required to produce your fishing license and any fish you have in your possession. If you fail to do so, or refuse to do so, you will receive the fines and suspension points as outlined in the statute. However, officers of the division of Colorado Parks and Wildlife are limited in their power at check stations.
C.R.S. 33-6-101(1) states that any CPW officer has the authority "to open, enter, and search all places of concealment where he or she has probable cause to believe wildlife held in violation" of the Colorado fishing regulations may be concealed. This statute applies to both motor vehicles and vessels--Everything from a paddleboard or canoe to trucks, jeeps and RV's. Once an officer has "probable cause" to believe that some evidence of a fishing violation may have been committed is concealed somewhere in your motor vehicle or vessel, they may search those motor vehicles or vessels. Refusal to consent to a search is NOT probable cause to search. You have every right to refuse a search of your motor vehicle or vessel.
If your vehicle or vessel was searched and evidence was found that allegedly indicated a fishing violation or other crime had occurred, you need to consult with an attorney before making any decisions. The Law Office of Nathaniel Gilbert will take your call and provide a 100% free consultation so there is no downside to calling.
Colorado Fishing Violations may seem small and fishermen and anglers may be tempted to plead guilty and pay the fines. However, the violations could have serious impacts on your ability to hunt in the fall depending on the number of points you will receive on your hunting license. Hunting and Fishing Violation Attorney Nathaniel Gilbert can help you evaluate your case and find your best route back in the field.
Hunters across the nation rejoiced to see the 2016 Colorado Big Game Calendar Brochure released this month by the Colorado Department of Wildlife and Parks. For those that may be planning their pilgrimages to the Rocky Mountains in search of Elk, Deer, or Moose, the Law Office of Nathaniel Gilbert just made the process a great deal easier.
By visiting the firm web site, you'll find the season dates for Elk, Moose, Deer, Pronghorn, and Black Bear in Colorado in a convenient, easy to download file (.ics) compatible with GMail, iPhones and iPads, Outlook, and several calendar softwares and apps. Never again will you commit to that October baby shower or out of town work conference without knowing it's the same day as the Elk opener. You'll know with one glance.
Clicking the link on our Sportsman's Calendar page will automatically add the dates to your default calendar, starting with the Big Game License Application Deadline of April 5, 2016 and running to the end of 2016. Each event and season start and close date comes pre-loaded with one alert two days before each date so you never miss a beat.
As an avid outdoorsman, I am proud to offer this free service for other dedicated hunters. Check back with the firm or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn for our next calendar--Kansas Big Game, Colorado Waterfowl, Kansas Waterfowl, and MORE!