U.P. ice shanty March 31 removal deadline approaching

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MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) - As the ice continues to melt, ice shanties need to be removed from Upper Peninsula waters.

On March 31 at midnight, ice shacks are no longer allowed to be on the ice overnight, which is two weeks later than the downstate deadline. If you continue to use your ice shack, it must be taken down daily. All other personal items and trash must be removed as well.

If your ice shanty is not removed, you’re subject to a $100 to $500 fine, plus triple the amount it costs for your shack to be taken off the ice. While March 31st is the official deadline, if ice conditions are unsafe, your shanty must be removed beforehand.

"There's always one or two somewhere within my work area where someone leaves an ice shack out. Make no mistake about it, people do call. I mean that's kind of a big deal to people because when they get left out, they don't just go away - they end up falling through the ice and then they drift somewhere and end up on someone's shore on their property as litter, or if you're boating it's a boating hazard for you to strike, so the general public doesn't like to see these shacks get left out, so we do enforce that, we make sure they come off," says Lieutenant Pete Wright, a District 1 Law Supervisor for the Michigan DNR Law Enforcement Division.

March 31 is also the last day of eligibility for 2017 licenses. Beginning April 1st, you will need 2018 fishing, hunting, and ORV licenses.