Fishing Responsibly in Toronto’s High Park

Fishing is currently permitted in season along a designated section of the Grenadier Pond shoreline (see map below). Grenadier Pond is a protected natural area. If you fish here, be sure you know and follow fishing regulations and catch-and-release techniques.

No boats are permitted on the pond. Anglers must have a current Ontario Resident's Anglers License and observe sport fishing regulations. Fishing line must be properly disposed of to protect wildlife.

High Park Permitted Fishing Area

Responsible Fishing Practices

The fish community of Grenadier Pond is continually under stress. Top predators such as bass help maintain a balance of fish in Grenadier Pond. As a conscientious angler, you can minimize your effect on this balance by following these guidelines:

  • Have your fishing license with you at all times.
  • Fish safely and avoid interfering with other wildlife or other park users.
  • Cast with caution, watch out for other people.
  • Observe sport fishing regulations and carefully dispose of any broken fishing lines and hooks. Either take them home with you or place them deep inside the covered garbage bins where they won't be a hazard to wildlife.
  • Learn how to properly catch and release fish; they can be easily damaged.
  • Catch-and-release is recommended. Be sure to safely remove the hook and line. Consider using barbless hooks, forceps or needle-nose pliers in dehooking, lead-free sinkers and artificial lures.

Fish handling advice:

  • Minimize the time you fight with the fish in the water.
  • Minimize the handling and time out of the water.
  • Your hands should be wet and bare when you handle fish. If handled by dry hands or gloves, damage results to the mucous covered skin and could lead to death from infections.
  • If you must lift the fish, hold it under the gills with one hand and just ahead of the tail with the other but do not touch the gills, or hold it under the belly area – otherwise internal organ damage may result.
  • Never hold a fish like the old-time angler used to (by the eye sockets) as this certainly will injure and likely kill the fish.
  • Do not throw the fish back into the water, putting it into shock; instead, gently lower the fish and cradle it (facing into the current) until it swims out of your hands.

Download Fish Etiquette bookmark

Fishing at Grenadier Pond. Photo: Karen Yukich
Fishing at Grenadier Pond. Photo: Karen Yukich

City of Toronto Bylaw: § 608-38. Fishing.

While in a park:

A. No person shall fish in an area posted to prohibit fishing;

B. No person shall store or leave any lures, bait, hooks, lines, poles or other equipment in the park in a location or manner that may injure other persons or wildlife; and

C. All permitted fishing must be carried out in compliance with all Ministry of Natural Resources Rules and Regulations.

NOTE: The license rules are the same for the whole province: "Outdoors Card and valid fishing license required" (unless you are under 18 or age 65+, in which case you need ID only). The fishing season rules are the same for the entire district (Fishing Zone 16) - check the for the details for each species.

Protecting Wildlife

Fishing can have unintended victims. Please be aware of wildlife and make every effort to keep them safe.

For more information see Factsheet: Impacts of Recreational Fishing on Wildlife and the Environment, Updated Apr. 12, 2017

What to do if you hook a turtle by Canadian Herpetological Society

Dead Snapping Turtle on hook found at Grenadier Pond. Photo: anonymous

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