Almost time to get fish houses off the ice

The deadline for removing ice fishing houses from Minnesota inland waters north of U.S. Highway 10 is March 18, the Department of Natural Resources said today in a reminder.

The area facing the deadline is located north of an east-west line formed by Highway 10 at the Minnesota-North Dakota border, east along state Highway 34 to Highway 200, east along Highway 200 to U.S. Highway 2, and east along U.S. Highway 2 to the Minnesota-Wisconsin border.

Dark houses, fish houses and portable shelters must be off the ice of inland lakes no later than midnight March 18. For Lake of the Woods and other Minnesota–Canada border waters, the deadline removing houses is March 31, but anglers should get their shelters off the ice earlier if conditions warrant.

The DNR will take enforcement action if shelters are left after the deadline. Those anglers who don’t remove their shelter can be prosecuted. Conservation officers may remove the structure and confiscate or destroy it. It is also unlawful to store or leave a shelter at a public access.

“Anglers should also remove any refuse or litter from the lake,” said Capt. James Dunn, DNR enforcement division. “Wood blocks used to support a shelter or any type of anchoring device need to be removed.”

After removal dates, shelters may remain on the ice between midnight and one hour before sunrise only when occupied or attended.

In North Dakota, permanent houses must be off the ice by midnight Friday.

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