The following guidelines apply to pond management and permit procedures for the state of New York. Permit requirements for fish management in New York ponds are described on the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation web site.

Fish Stocking/Management

Before fish can be stocked in your pond, you must obtain a Farm Fish Pond License from a Regional Office of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. This license will entitle you to stock and manage your pond for the production of fish. You must also obtain a permit to stock triploid grass carp if you choose to use grass carp to control aquatic plants. Information about grass carp and obtaining this permit is also available from the New York DEC web site.

Chemical Treatment

Applying algaecides and herbicides to control vegetation in ponds may also require NYSDEC permits. Information about these requirements is available from the New York State DEC web site.

Pond Construction

Building a pond or altering a water source may require additional NYSDEC permits. The types of permits generally fall into four categories:

1. Dam safety permit - required for the construction of an impoundment structure, unless the one of following permit exemptions apply:

  • The maximum height of the impoundment structure is 6 feet or less.
  • The dam structure impounds one million gallons of water or less.
  • The maximum height of the dam structure is between 6 and 15 feet, and has an impounding capacity of less than 3 million gallons.

2. Stream Protection Permit - required for the disturbance of a protected stream.

3. Freshwater Wetland Permit - required for excavating or filling an area within 100 feet of a NYSDEC regulated freshwater wetland.

4. Mined Land Reclamation Permit - required for removing more than 1,000 tons of soil and minerals from an individual site.