Check 2019 fishing regulations before heading out 

Anglers will find a variety of regulation updates when they open up the 2019 Minnesota fishing regulations, including a continuous fishing season on South Dakota border waters, fall trout fishing in Rushford, and changes for walleye regulations on large lakes like Leech, Kabetogama and Lake of the Woods. 

“Before going fishing, anglers should be sure to check page seven of the fishing regulations that details what’s new for 2019,” said Al Stevens, fisheries program consultant with the Department of Natural Resources.

The 2019 Minnesota Fishing Regulations booklet is available March 1 online and anywhere Minnesota fishing licenses are sold. It includes the following regulation changes:

  • A continuous season begins Friday, March 1, for walleye, northern pike and bass on South Dakota border waters of Big Stone, Traverse, Mud and Hendricks lakes.
  • The 17- to 28-inch protected slot limit for walleye in Namakan, Kabetogama, Sand Point, Little Vermilion and Crane lakes is now a protected slot limit of 18 to 26 inches.
  • On Lake of the Woods, the DNR reduced the combined possession limit for sauger and walleye to six. Of that, no more than four may be walleye.
  • On the Rainy River and Fourmile Bay of Lake of the Woods, the spring walleye season from March 1 to April 14 is changed to catch-and-release only.
  • Anglers will no longer have a protected slot limit for walleye in Leech Lake, but the bag restriction remains.
  • Anglers will no longer have special regulations for northern pike in Lake Vermilion in St. Louis County, East and West Sylvia lakes in Wright County, Sturgeon Lake in Pine County and Big Fish Lake in Stearns County.
  • Anglers will no longer have special regulations for walleye in Pearl Lake in Stearns County.
  • Within the city limits of Rushford, anglers in the fall will be able to catch-and-release stream trout in Rush Creek.

Before making changes in any regulation, the DNR evaluates the regulation, shares what’s found in the evaluations and angler surveys, hosts public input meetings in the fall, and reviews comments from the public about the regulations. The DNR also considers goals of individual lake management plans.

“We’re always trying to improve fish populations and make fishing better or more sustainable, and we sincerely value the public’s input in this process,” Stevens said.

For more information about fishing in Minnesota visit mndnr.gov/fishing.