Michigan ice fishing season ends soon with shanty removal dates set
MID-MICHIGAN (WJRT) - Michigan’s ice fishing season is quickly drawing to a close.
The Michigan Department of Natural Resources has set ice shanty removal deadlines for the state, beginning with Lake St. Clair this weekend. All shanties must be removed from the lake by sunset on Sunday.
Ice shanties must be removed from waterways in all counties south of Arenac, Isabella, Midland, Gladwin and Ogemaw by March 1. The deadline for those counties and the rest of the northern Lower Peninsula is March 15.
Shanties must be removed from Upper Peninsula waterways by March 31.
The DNR cautions that anglers need to remain aware of changing ice conditions regardless of the deadline for removing their shanties. The structures must be removed early if the ice weakens and no longer can support them.
Shanty owners face up to 30 days in jail and a $500 fine if their structure falls through the ice. If a government agency has to remove a shanty, the owner can be billed for three times the actual cost of the work.
“Based on the 10-day forecast, portions of the Lower Peninsula are predicted to experience fluctuating temperatures near or above freezing,” said First Lt. Jason Wicklund of the DNR Law Enforcement Division. “Temperature fluctuations can create unstable and unsafe ice conditions very fast. It’s the angler’s responsibility to safely remove their shanty before it falls through the ice.”
After the removal deadlines, ice fishermen can bring shanties onto the ice for daily use as long as they remove it by the end of each day.
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