Fishing Regulations

The fishing licence

Fishing in the public waters of the walloon region requires a fishing licence delivered in the post offices from that region. That licence is personal and valid for the current year.

Two categories of licence are available depending on the fishing method used:
Licence A (500 BF) allows all kinds of fishing methods using one or two lines from the bank.
Licence B (1500 BF) allows all kinds of fishing methods using one or two lines from the bank or elsewhere (i.e. wading, boat fishing, fishing from a fixed platform).

Children under the age of 14 are exempted of fishing licence in the walloon region if obeying the three following conditions:

Fishing on saturdays, sundays, bank and school holidays;
accompanied by their father, mother, tutor or any person having attained the age of majority delegated by them, in the possession of a fishing licence;
fishing using one line fitted with a single hook.

Fishing rights

Rivers are classified in two categories:

1. Navigable or floatable rivers (indicated in red on the map that you can buy in every postoffice): only the walloon region fishing licence is required.

2. Non navigable nor floatable rivers (indicated in blue on the map): require also the authorisation of the riparian owner or the purchase of a fishing permit from the local angling association.

 Seasons and timetables

Fishing seasons depend on the species of fish pusuited:

trout: from the third saturday of March until September 30th included;
coarse fish: from the third saturday of June until the friday preceding the third saturday of March included;
carnivora (perch, pike, zander) and grayling: from the third saturday of June until December 31th included.

For more details concerning opening and closing dates for each river refer to the comprehensive table outlined in "Where and when and what you may fish in 1995 in walloon region".

Fishing is allowed 30 mins before sunrise until 30 mins after 30 sundown.

 Classification of river systems

The law on angling distinguishes three categories of rivers:

1. Trout streams: rivers and tributaries in which trout is the main species
2. Mixed waters: wider rivers populated by fast water coarse fish (barbel, chub etc) and by salmonids (trout and sometimes grayling) as well as carnivorous species.
3. Coarse fish rivers containing mainly slow water cyprinids (dace, breme, tench, carp etc) and carnivorous species.

 The walloon region is divided in two parts:

1. Northern part situated north from the Sambre and Meuse;
2. Southern part situated south of the Sambre and Meuse, and including these rivers.

 Fishing methods authorised

The use of a fishing rod is the sole method authorised; the angler must be in the position of keeping a constant attention to it.

The number of hooks (single, double or treble) is limited to three.

The use of a landing net is restricted to the landing of fish caught with rod and line.

Any foul-hooked fish must be put back in the water with due care and attention.

Forbidden methods are: fishing under the ice; blood and bone marrow used as bait; fishing with tin or lead devons, trolling from a boat equipped with an outboard motor.

 Fishing areas

Areas were fishing is forbidden are indicated by the administration with signs picturing an angler crossed with a red stripe. One or two complementary arrows indicate the direction of the interdiction.

Areas where fishing is forbidden are usually located in the vicinity of dams and sluices, yachting harbours and spawning areas.

 Protected species

Angling for the following species is forbidden during the whole season: bouvière, sturgeon, flounder, lamprey, pond and river loach, seatrout and atlantic salmon.

Important notice !

The hereabove mentioned information is only a brief summary of the existing reglementation, we therefore strongly advice the visiting angler to inquire about this reglementation in its integrality.


The angler is a responsible individual:

he obeys the reglementation, shows respect for the fish and the environment;

he contributes to the conservation of piscicultural resources;

he leaves no trace of its passage on the river bank;

he is courteous with other fellow anglers and people using the river;

he respects private property;

he gives the alarm when pollution is observed.