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Ice anglers: Have fun, follow rules

Wednesday, February 3rd, 2010 at 8:23 am

With a month of ice fishing patrols behind them, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) conservation officers have seen some violation patterns and offer a few tips to anglers for staying citation-free.

Officers say that the three most common violations are too many lines, no fishing license in possession and overlimit.

“The real message is that good fishing is still happening around the state,” said CO Jeff Birchem of Baudette. “So get out there and enjoy the great resources that Minnesota has to offer, follow the rules, and be safe!”

* Minnesota, anglers are allowed to use two lines in the winter, except on trout lakes where only one line is allowed.

* Anglers must have a valid Minnesota fishing license in their possession while fishing.

* Anglers should take a little extra time to familiarize themselves with the regulations that are relevant to the lake you’re fishing.

* Fish with statewide length limits, such as muskie, sturgeon, catfish, salmon, splake, brook trout, brown trout, and rainbow trout, must be transported with head and tail intact so the fish can be measured. Northern pike and walleye are exempt from this rule. Sauger that are dressed or filleted will be counted as walleye.

* Likewise, when on or fishing experimental, special, border or other waters with size restrictions different from statewide regulations, all fish for which the size restriction applies must have their heads, tails, fins, and skin intact and be measurable. The exception is fillets, which may be possessed if the person is preparing a meal, or if the fillets have been packaged by a licensed fish packer.

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