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Scientific licences

We aim to review licences in a 45 day service standard.

However, our ability to do so may be affected by the volume of applications and queries received and by staff availability to respond.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada is responsible for the issuance of licences to fish for experimental, scientific, educational or public display purposes. Fishing means fishing for, catching or attempting to catch fish by any method. This definition includes fishing when there is no intent to retain any fish such as for absence/presence studies.

If you are a researcher, research institution or biological consultant and need to harvest fish for these purposes, you must have a scientific licence.

There is no fee for a scientific licence unless it is for public display purposes, in which case the fee is $100.

If you intend to fish for bivalves that are in a contaminated area you require a licence issued under the Management of Contaminated Fisheries Regulations (MCFR). A $107.57 fee applies for this licence.

Depending on the complexity of the application and availability of staff it could take up to 45 days to process, approve and send out a licence.

Applications and permits

Introductions and Transfers

When any of the following activities apply, you must apply for and be in possession of an Introductions and Transfers licence (s. 56 Fishery (General) Regulations) for each instance. Transferring fish without a valid licence is a violation of the Fisheries Act.

Introductions and Transfers licence application forms

Questions and applications:

Related materials

Contact us

North Coast Area

Telephone: 250-627-3499

South Coast Area (marine and freshwater)


Fraser and Interior Area (marine and freshwater)

Telephone: 604-666-7575

BC Interior Area

Telephone: 250-851-4950

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