Definition of Fishery

Business or process of catching, processing, or selling fish. A hatchery or place for catching fish, A right or liberty of taking fish at a particular place or waters. A species of incorporeal hereditament, anciently termed "piscary,” of which there are several kinds:

Common fishery. A fishing ground where all persons have a right to take fish. Not to be confounded with "common of fishery,” as to which see Common, n.

Free fishery. A franchise in the hands of a subject, existing by grant or prescription, distinct from an ownership in the soil. It is an exclusive right, and applies to a public navigable river, without any right in the soil.

Right of fishery. The general and common right of the citizens to take fish from public waters, such as the sea, great lakes, etc. Shively v. Bowlby, 152 U.S. 1, 14 S.Ct. 548, 38 L.Ed. 331. Such rights are restricted however by federal and state laws that establish fishing seasons, licensing requirements, catch limits, etc.

Several fishery. A fishery of which the owner is also the owner of the soil, or derives his right from the owner of the soil. 2 Bl.Comm. 39, 40. One by which the party claiming it has the right of fishing, independently of all other, so that no person can have a coextensive right with him in the object claimed; but a partial and independent right in another, or a limited liberty, does not derogate from the right of the owner.

That's the definition of Fishery in Black's Law Dictionary 6th Edition. Courtesy of