Removing lake plants could require a permit

Lakeshore property owners are reminded that a permit may be required to remove aquatic plants, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.  Full Story

Grants available for groups that help more people hunt and fish

Grants are available for groups that help more people hunt and fish through a program that, so far, has funded 34 projects ranging from an outdoor adventure club at Roseville Area High School to classes for the Fairmont community that get friends and family fishing together.   Full Story

DNR adds more counties to burning restrictions list

Because wildfire risk remains high, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has added the following counties to the burn restriction list effective immediately:  Full Story

Decades later, Mt. Tom still provides fantastic views

Sibley State Park icon remains jewel in Kandiyohi County

Rising above the treetops at Sibley State Park is an icon of Kandiyohi County –Mt. Tom and its viewing shelter. The shelter, constructed in 1938, became a destination for people who visited one of Minnesota’s best-known state parks.  Full Story

Reminder: Northern pike zone regulations in effect for fishing opener

Anglers planning to fish for northern pike when the season opens Saturday, May 12, are reminded that new regulations for catching and keeping northern pike will be the most significant change they’ll find in the 2018 Minnesota Fishing Regulations Booklet.  Full Story

Fishing opener: What people need to know

The tradition of fishing opener in Minnesota centers around roughly half a million anglers going fishing the day the season opens for walleye, sauger, northern pike and trout in lakes – this year on Saturday, May 12. Here are some reminders for the 2018 fishing opener.  Full Story

Dry, windy conditions prompt Red Flag Warning for most of the state

Conditions ripe for wildfire

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources reminds people that a Red Flag Warning has been issued by the National Weather Service today.  Full Story

Itasca County fishing closures will protect spawning fish

Anglers in Itasca County will notice fishing closure signs at several area lakes and a creek this spring. These temporary closures are regularly enacted during the start of the fishing season to protect concentrations of spawning fish that may be vulnerable to over-harvest. Full Story

New DNR website application enlists public to help document bear expansion

Citizen-science project to collect bear sightings outside primary bear range

Minnesota’s black bear range has been slowly expanding southward and westward. To better understand and document this expansion, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources designed a new reporting application on its website to gather bear sightings made by the public outside the primary bear range.  Full Story

The water’s fine – or almost melted – so let’s go fishing!

By Jeff Ledermann, angler and hunter education and skills team supervisor

So you might have heard that fishing is a big deal in Minnesota. Maybe you’ve even thought it sounds kind of fun. Then reality sets in and here comes the list of chores, hassles and other plans – all those reasons we end up watching beautiful vistas through our friends’ social media feeds instead of enjoying Minnesota’s great outdoors ourselves.  Full Story

Grand Marais area fisheries announces survey work

Each year, fisheries staff from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Grand Marais area office conducts fisheries surveys and assessments to monitor changes in fish populations, and to evaluate management strategies. Full Story

DNR fisheries summer fieldwork schedule on Aitkin area lakes

Each year, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Aitkin area fisheries staff conducts fisheries surveys and assessments to monitor changes in fish populations, and to determine if management strategies have been effective. Full Story

Minnesota, Wisconsin DNRs to discuss bag, size limits on Mississippi

Minnesota and Wisconsin natural resources departments will hold five public input meetings in mid-May to kick off a multi-state review of bag and size limits for gamefish on the Mississippi River between Hastings, Minn., and the Iowa border.  Full Story

DNR urges extreme caution on late-season ice

Lakes in every part of Minnesota are experiencing later-than-usual ice-out but temperatures are rising and the Department of Natural Resources reminds anyone venturing onto remaining ice to use extreme caution – or stay off altogether. During the past week, conservation officers throughout the state report deteriorating ice conditions and instances of people and equipment falling through.  Full Story

Special regulations vs. northern pike zones: Which wins?

One question that may arise from anglers reading the northern pike zone regulations in effect when the season opens Saturday, May 12: What about special regulations that apply to individual waters?  Full Story

May is Minnesota Arbor Month

New videos show how to plant trees for clean water

To help celebrate Arbor Month, the Department of Natural Resources has created three short and fun videos that demonstrate how to plant, water, and mulch trees. Planting trees is the easiest and most natural way to keep water clean.  Full Story

Hook a catfish and get hooked on fun

Consider the lowly catfish. With its long, whisker-like barbels and flattened face, it might not be the prettiest fish swimming in Minnesota’s waters. But more and more anglers around the state are finding it an attractive species, both for sport and for the frying pan.  Full Story

DNR Enforcement Division announces promotions

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Enforcement Division has promoted four officers – Chelsie Leuthardt, Brandon McGaw, Jen Mueller and Brett Oberg – to the position of regional training officer. They’ve been in their new positions since April 18.  Full Story

DNR urges Minneopa State Park visitors to keep bison calves’ safety in mind

Calves mark successful introduction of Theodore Roosevelt National Park herd genetics

With new bison calves expected at Minneopa State Park in the coming weeks and months, managers with the Department of Natural Resources Parks and Trails division are reminding visitors to keep calves’ safety in mind by remaining in their vehicles along the park’s popular bison range road.  Full Story

DNR to hold confiscated hunting, fishing equipment auction

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has scheduled an auction of confiscated hunting and fishing equipment for Saturday, Aug. 4. The auction, which is open to the public, will include items from people who forfeited their equipment after committing serious game and fish violations. More than 200 firearms, over 40 bows, and a variety of other hunting and fishing-related equipment will be available.  Full Story

Buy a walleye stamp and help maintain fishing opportunities

Some anglers go above and beyond to make fishing better in Minnesota by purchasing walleye stamps that help the Department of Natural Resources add walleye to lakes where there otherwise would be none.  Full Story

Sophia’s Law takes effect May 1

New carbon monoxide law aimed at saving boaters

In advance of the 2018 boating season, Minnesota will be the first state in the nation to require carbon monoxide detectors and warning stickers on certain boats. Sophia’s Law, named after 7-year-old Sophia Baechler, who died tragically from carbon monoxide poisoning while on her family’s boat, takes effect May 1.  Full Story

Why the zones? New regulations for keeping northern pike explained

The new northern pike fishing regulations, which were announced recently and go into effect on the May 12 fishing opener, have three distinct zones to address the different characteristics of pike populations in Minnesota, according to the Department of Natural Resources.
Full Story

With late ice-out, DNR crews face a challenge to get ramps and docks ready by fishing opener

The lingering cold weather is delaying ice-out on Minnesota lakes and rivers, which could make it difficult for DNR crews to have the 1,500 public water accesses it manages ready in time for the May 12 fishing opener. Full Story

Bear hunt applications available; deadline is Friday, May 4

Hunters are reminded that applications for bear hunting licenses are being accepted now through Friday, May 4, wherever Minnesota hunting and fishing license are sold, online at and by telephone at 888-665-4236. Full Story

DNR adds 2 metro area open-house meetings about deer plan

Two additional open-house meetings are scheduled in the Twin Cities metro area to help people understand and ask questions about Minnesota’s draft statewide deer management plan. Full Story

New estimate shows healthy Mille Lacs smallmouth bass population

Since the late 1990s, Mille Lacs Lake has become an increasingly popular destination for anglers who want to catch trophy-sized smallmouth bass. Until now, it wasn’t known how many of these fish – prized more for their fight than their fillets – called the lake home. A population estimate completed in 2018 shows there are some 67,000 smallmouth bass in the 128,000-acre lake. Full Story

New underwater-themed geocaching challenge begins on Earth Day

A new geocaching challenge called the Aquatic Quest, which focuses on plants and animals that live in Minnesota’s lakes, rivers and ponds, is being offered by the Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

Popular expanded hours and interpreters make DNR info just a call away

Have a question for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources in the evening or on a Saturday?  Need an interpreter?  No problem. Full Story

If it’s predictable, it’s preventable: Wildfire Prevention Week 2018

This Wildfire Prevention Week (April 15-21), the Department of Natural Resources encourages people to look past the late-season snow and start getting ready for wildfire season.  Full Story

DNR crews see productive winter of prairie habitat restoration

With the buzzing of chain saws and constant drone of heavy machines, the landscape on the Lac qui Parle Wildlife Management Area in west-central Minnesota is changing. Contractors are busy removing trees from the prairie as part of a wildlife habitat restoration project.  Full Story

DNR announces temporary, seasonal fishing closures

To protect spawning fish, the Department of Natural Resources has begun to close certain portions of some Minnesota waters. The closings are routine and based on local conditions.  Full Story

Northern pike added to state’s catch-and-release record program

Anglers who catch and release northern pike can earn state records through an expansion of a Minnesota Department of Natural Resources record fish program that previously included only lake sturgeon, muskellunge and flathead catfish in the catch-and-release category.   Full Story

Volunteers add $7.4 million in value to DNR

Nearly 23,000 citizens donated services valued at $7.4 million during 2017 to assist the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources in accomplishing its conservation mission through a variety of projects and programs, according to the new 2017 Annual DNR Volunteer Report released today. That’s the equivalent of an extra 135 full-time staff. Full Story

DNR’s main trout hatchery in disrepair, jeopardizing statewide stocking efforts

Conducting repairs at the state’s 15 hatcheries is part of Gov. Mark Dayton’s $130 million request of Legislature for DNR’s natural resources asset preservation

Minnesota’s flagship state-owned trout hatchery in Lanesboro needs $5 million in improvements so anglers can continue to enjoy a regular supply of stocked trout in streams and lakes throughout the state.  Full Story

New plan fosters better understanding of deer management, more citizen input

Comments accepted through May 9; informational meetings begin statewide later this month

Minnesota’s new deer plan sets a new statewide harvest target, increases citizen participation in deer management, and outlines ways to keep the population and habitat healthy.  Full Story

DNR, REI team up to provide trip-planning assistance at new Adventure Station

Wondering where to break in those new hiking boots? Looking for tips on where to pitch that new tent? Stop by the new Adventure Station at REI’s flagship store in Bloomington for some advice from the pros.  Full Story

Get fishing questions answered or a license on the go at Fish Minnesota

What species can I fish for? What kind of bait is legal? What kind of fish can I keep? Don’t have a fishing regulations book handy? No problem. You can find the answer at Fish Minnesota, the fishing information webpage at Story

Upper Red Lake walleye regulations announced for 2018 open water season

Anglers fishing Upper Red Lake this spring will again be able to keep four walleye of which only one may be longer than 17 inches, continuing the same regulation that was in place this past winter and the previous 2017 open water season.   Full Story

Be aware of bears this spring; DNR lists tips for avoiding conflicts

Anyone living near bear habitat is reminded to be aware of bears this spring and check their property for food sources that could attract bears.  Full Story

Minnesota fishing facts

Anglers and waters

  • There are about 1.4 million licensed anglers in Minnesota.
  • About 500,000 people are expected to fish on Minnesota’s opening day of the walleye and northern pike season, Saturday, May 12.
  • Minnesota has 11,842 lakes, 4,500 of which are considered fishing lakes. There are over 18,000 miles of fishable rivers and streams, including 3,800 miles of trout streams.
  • Average annual expenditure per angler in Minnesota is about $1,500.*
  • Although not every kind of fish lives everywhere, 162 species of fish can be found in Minnesota waters.

Full Story

License sales support diverse angling opportunities

Walleye might be Minnesota’s most popular fish, but the state’s waters also are renowned for trophy catfish, muskellunge and smallmouth bass. All of the state’s large rivers are home to lake sturgeon, which can weigh as much as 100 pounds. In southeastern Minnesota, trout rise to flies in the region’s cold, clear spring creeks. Along the North Shore, large migratory rainbow trout known as steelhead provide thrills.   Full Story

DNR statement regarding White Bear Lake ruling

Today, Department of Natural Resources Commissioner Tom Landwehr issued this statement about a recent Ramsey County District Court ruling: Full Story

Many Minnesota outdoor recreational facilities, buildings in disrepair

Gov. Mark Dayton asks Legislature for $130 million in natural resources asset preservation support for DNR

Visitors to Jay Cooke State Park are awed by the scenic views of the St. Louis River and the historic swinging bridge. But one thing they won’t find at this iconic park is water for drinking or flushing toilets.

That is because the park’s main water line failed this winter, forcing the park to shut down the water supply and close all of its bathrooms with flush toilets. Full Story

DNR seeks comments on EAW for Blue Mounds State Park restoration project

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is accepting comments through April 25 on an environmental assessment worksheet to address conditions left by flooding in Blue Mounds State Park.  Full Story