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Overview of Georgia Aquaculture Regulations

Information for Grass Carp Dealers

The following information pertains to the sale of grass carp in Georgia. It applies to Georgia-based individuals and companies and out-of-state individuals and companies doing business in Georgia or with Georgia pond owners. Below are some facts and information about grass carp and the sale of grass carp in Georgia.  

Grass carp facts
  • Grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idella) are an exotic fish species and are covered under Georgia Law in code sections O.C.G.A. 27-5-4 and 27-5-5.
  • Only triploid grass carp may be sold or stocked in Georgia.
  • Grass carp may only be purchased from properly licensed grass carp dealers. View an on-line list of authorized suppliers here.
  • All grass carp dealers must be licensed through DNR (Wild Animal License).
  • No permit is required for persons (pond owners) buying triploid grass carp from wild animal dealers licensed by Georgia DNR to sell grass carp if the buyer retains the bill of sale as proof, and the grass carp are stocked into a private pond.
Does everyone selling grass carp need a license, even if it they are only selling a few?

Yes. All individuals, companies, or retailers selling grass carp need to be licensed by DNR and have a current Wild Animal License authorizing that activity. This applies to the sale of all grass carp, regardless of the quantity involved.

If someone is advertising grass carp for sale in the newspaper, market bulletin, or on-line they must be authorized by DNR, right?

No.  Just because someone is offering grass carp for sale (even a professional consultant as  part of their services) they may not be properly licensed. A list of authorized grass carp dealers is available here. This list is updated several times a year. You may also call your local Fisheries Management office to verify a dealer. When in doubt, ask about a dealer or supplier before you buy.

Can grass carp be sold with an Aquaculture Registration? 

No. An Aquaculture Registration only covers the culture and sale of domestic fish species (such as channel catfish, largemouth bass, bluegill, rainbow trout, etc.) It does not allow you to raise or sell grass carp. Information on Aquaculture Registrations and general aquaculture permit requirements may be found here.

How do you know a dealer or supplier is properly licensed and selling triploid fish?

You can check our website or contact our Fisheries offices to verify the status of a dealer or supplier. You can also ask to see a copy of their current license authorizing that activity. Fish coming from out-of-state suppliers will have a triploid certification for shipment into Georgia. All Georgia-based dealers and suppliers should also be selling triploid fish. Ask if the fish are certified triploid.

What about traveling or mobile fish trucks that come to farm and garden centers from time to time, do they need to be licensed?

Yes. Those dealers must be licensed by DNR and possess a current license while doing business in Georgia.

I don't raise grass carp, I only pick up the fish from a larger grass carp supplier and provide them to pond owners.  Do I need to be licensed?

Yes. Even if you are only a middleman and resell fish to pond owners you are considered a dealer and need a license. The only way that you would not need a license is if you are an employee of a licensed dealer or business and deliver fish as part of your job (you are not making a profit from the sale or delivery of the fish and are not acting as an independent agent, consultant, or contractor). You would however need to have a copy of the license in your possession.

How much do licenses cost and how do you get one?
  • Grass Carp Dealer (Wild Animal License or WAL) applications are available from the DNR Special Permit Unit (770-761-3044).
  • WAL fees are $236 annually.
How long are licenses valid?

The Wild Animal License is good for one year and valid from April 1 through March 31of the next year. If you are an active dealer you must renew your license each year by April 1. 


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