Mattamuskeet National Wildlife Refuge
Southeast Region

Fishing on Mattamuskeet


Lake Mattamuskeet is a very shallow lake allowing only small boats access to approximately 40,000 acres of prime warmwater fishing. In addition to the lake, there are miles of canals available for bank fishing. Favorite species to catch are largemouth bass, white perch, crappie, sunfish, catfish and blue crabs.

Download the Mattamuskeet National Wildlife Refuge Sport Fishing Regulations (PDF)



A freshwater fishing license is required to catch crabs. Crabs must be caught by hand lines only – up to five lines per person. Crab pots are not permitted. Crabs must be at least 5 inches, point to point, and the limit is 12 per person per day.



A freshwater fishing license is required to fish. The lake is closed to all boats from November 1 to March 1.



A blue crab amongst grasses and shallow water

A blue crab. Photo: Brian Henderson, Creative Commons Attribution license. View/download on Flickr.


A beautiful lavender and pink sunset over the lake with grasses in the foreground

A lavender and pink sunset over Lake Mattamuskeet. Photo: Allie Stewart, USFWS. View/download on Flickr.


Mattamuskeet National Wildlife Refuge
85 Mattamuskeet Road
Swan Quarter, NC 27885
(252) 926-4021 FAX: (252) 926-1743

Last Updated: 10/27/14