Fishing in Minnesota? Know When You Need a License

If you’re planning on fishing in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, it’s crucial to know when you need a fishing license. Minnesota, renowned for its abundant fishing opportunities, boasts over 10,000 lakes and more than 16,000 miles of fishable streams and rivers. But before you can cast your line, you need to ensure you have the proper license.

When You Need A License

In Minnesota, anyone 16 years of age or older must have a valid fishing license to fish in state waters. This includes:

  • Minnesota residents
  • Non-residents
  • Children under 16 who are fishing with a parent or guardian who has a valid fishing license

Types Of Licenses

Minnesota offers several types of fishing licenses, depending on your age, residency status, and duration of stay. These include:

Resident Licenses

Resident licenses are available for Minnesota residents who have lived in the state for at least 60 days prior to purchasing a license. These licenses are valid for one year from the date of purchase and include:

  • Individual angling license
  • Family fishing license
  • Combination angling and hunting license

Non-Resident Licenses

Non-resident licenses are available for individuals who do not meet the residency requirements for a resident license. These licenses can be purchased for various durations and include:

  • Individual angling license
  • Family fishing license
  • 24-hour angling license
  • 72-hour angling license
  • 7-day angling license
  • Season angling license

Other Licenses

In addition to angling licenses, there are also other licenses available for special circumstances, including:

  • Lifetime licenses for Minnesota residents
  • Veteran licenses for Minnesota residents who are veterans of the U.S. armed forces
  • Disability licenses for Minnesota residents who have a qualifying disability
  • Border waters licenses for anglers who fish on both Minnesota and Canadian waters

Where To Get A License

Fishing licenses in Minnesota can be obtained online, by phone, or in-person at a licensed agent. Licenses are also available at Department of Natural Resources (DNR) offices throughout the state.

License Fees

The cost of a fishing license in Minnesota varies depending on the type of license and your residency status. Here’s a breakdown of some of the most common license fees:

  • Resident individual angling license: $25
  • Non-resident individual 24-hour angling license: $12
  • Non-resident individual 7-day angling license: $43
  • Non-resident individual season angling license: $51

Rules And Regulations

When fishing in Minnesota, it’s important to follow all rules and regulations set forth by the DNR. Some of the most important regulations include:

  • Fishing seasons and limits: The DNR sets specific seasons and limits for different types of fish to ensure that populations remain healthy and sustainable.
  • Catch-and-release: Some species of fish are protected and must be released immediately after being caught. It’s important to know which species are catch-and-release and how to handle them properly.
  • Use of bait: There are restrictions on the type of bait that can be used when fishing in certain areas.


Fishing in Minnesota is a popular pastime for residents and visitors alike. But before you hit the water, make sure to obtain the proper fishing license and follow all regulations set forth by the DNR. By doing so, you can help ensure that Minnesota’s fishing resources remain healthy and abundant for generations to come.


Q1. Who needs a fishing license in Minnesota?

All anglers 16 years and older are required to have a fishing license to fish in Minnesota waters, including residents and non-residents. There are also special regulations for fishing trout, salmon, and sturgeon that require additional permits.

Q2. When do I need a fishing license in Minnesota?

A fishing license is required year-round in Minnesota for both ice fishing and open water fishing. However, there are some exceptions, such as during Minnesota’s annual “Take a Kid Fishing Weekend” when adults can fish without a license if they are accompanied by a child age 15 or younger.

Q3. Where can I buy a fishing license in Minnesota?

Fishing licenses in Minnesota can be purchased online through the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources website or through an authorized license agent, which include sporting goods stores, bait shops, and many other locations throughout the state. Licenses can also be purchased over the phone by calling 888-665-4236.

Similar Posts