updated 30 April 2020

Covid-19 Notice – Fishery Closure

Effective March 28th, 2020 all IFI owned and managed fisheries are now closed until further notice.

Effective 9 April 2020, ESB has closed all its fisheries.

  • Entire River Shannon system
  • River Lee catchment,
  • River Liffey catchment,
  • Erne and Assaroe Lake.

Waterways Ireland has closed all its canals and navigable waters to angling. Covid-19 Update 24 April 2020

15 April: NPWS has closed the Killarney Lakes and all NPWS waters to angling Boating and fishing no longer allowed in large parks and reserves [Irish Times article]

Covid-19 Angling Guidelines

IFI has received input from the Dept. of Health in relation to the drafting of these recreational fishing guidelines and wish to advise as follows:

At present there have been no specific restrictions placed on recreational angling under the current Covid-19 guidelines however anybody intending to fish must ensure that they adhere to the latest advice on Covid-19 which is published here:


and here:


03 April

03 April 2020


IFI angling guidelines that have been issued are to facilitate those that wish to take angling as their brief exercise while at all times following Government and HSE guidelines relating to social distancing.

IFI offers further clarification as follows:

  1. Fishing for a brief period means no more than an hour to an hour and a half
  2. Fish in a location less than or equal to 2km from your home
  3. Driving to fish is considered non-essential travel and therefore it is NOT APPROPRIATE for people to drive to a location whether within 2kms or further from home for the purpose of fishing.
  4. Fish only where you have permission to fish  – do not enter into private fisheries
  5. Use only legal methods
  6. Where you intend to fish club waters, check that they are open for fishing ( even if they are within 2km, they may not be open).

28 March

All IFI owned and managed fisheries are now closed.

Anglers, angling clubs and fishery owners are advised to adhere to Government and HSE guidelines, to take normal safety precautions when fishing and in relation to Covid-19 should take the following into consideration:

  • Leaving home may only be undertaken for brief individual exercise – within 2 kilometres of your house. (You can bring children but must keep 2 metres away from others for social distancing).
  • Avoid crowded places
  • Reduce social interactions
  • Anglers should remain 2 metres apart (roughly one rod length) from each other and other members of the public
  • If applicable, anglers should check that the fishery is open in advance of fishing
  • Fish only if legally permitted to do so
  • Anglers need to be aware that they are in areas that are not routinely disinfected or cleaned and use all precautions to keep themselves and other safe from Covid19

Permits and licences are no longer for sale on-line. IFI approved distributors are recommended to not sell licences or permits on behalf of IFI at this time.

If you do intend to go fishing you should adhere to the guidelines for getting outdoors responsibly published by Leave No Trace.

Contacting IFI

Following the HSE and the Government’s advice in relation to the delay of COVID-19, Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) has closed all offices. IFI staff are working from home.

At this time the only way to contact IFI is by email and telephone. Contact details are available at the Contact us tab. Office phones are diverted to staff who can deal with your query. Under the circumstances there may be delays in replying to your query.

IFI staff will respond to emergency calls as appropriate.

Licence and permit sales have been suspended and IFI has closed all state managed fisheries.

IFI has a 24 hour confidential hotline 0818 34 74 24 through which members of the public may report incidents of illegal fishing, water pollution and invasive species which will continue to operate. Please be aware that our service provider is experiencing a high volume of calls at this time.