Minnesota Fish Houses and Wheelhouses Require License Purchase This Season

MINNESOTA – Beginning this ice fishing season, anglers using a wheelhouse type of ice or dark house shelter are required to purchase a license to place the shelter on the ice, even when occupying it, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

A new definition for portable shelters has been provided in law, which states that a portable shelter is one that collapses, folds, or is disassembled for transportation.

A shelter meeting the new definition of portable only needs a license when a person leaves it unattended, meaning they are father than 200 feet from the shelter.

“Wheeled fish houses, which formerly were considered portable – and thus excluded from licensing requirements for shelters – will now need to be licensed,” said Al Stevens, fisheries survey and systems consultant with the MnDNR. “In the past, anglers using wheelhouses could use them without shelter licenses as long as they were occupied, including overnight.”

An annual resident shelter license is $16, a three-year license is $43. Owners of houses to be rented pay $31 annually or $88 for a three-year license.

A valid license tag must be attached to the outside of the fish house in a readily visible location. On border waters, a shelter license is not required on the Minnesota side if the neighboring state doesn’t require a shelter license for its waters.

Licenses can be purchased at DNR license agents across Minnesota at licenses.dnr.state.mn.us

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