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For portions of the lower peninsula, it's time to remove the ice shanty

The date to remove an ice shanty from lakes in Kent, Ottawa and Muskegon counties is midnight March 1.

MUSKEGON COUNTY, Mich. — The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) reminds anglers that ice shanty removal date for Kent, Ottawa, and Muskegon counties is March 1.

Owners of ice shanties not removed by midnight face possible fines and even jail time.

If a shanty is removed by a government agency, the court can require the owner to reimburse that agency for up to three times the cost of removal.

Regardless of the set removal dates, changing ice conditions could require the removal of fishing shanties every year once ice can no longer safely support them. 

"They're melting into the ice, water is forming around them and then it refreezes," said Michigan DNR Conservation Officer Ann Cullen. "People need to be careful when they're getting those things off the ice and hopefully they're thinking ahead and bringing some equipment out there that they need while keeping in mind the unsafe ice conditions."

Shanties in the northern Lower Peninsula must be removed by midnight Monday, March 15. Those counties include Alcona, Alpena, Antrim, Arenac, Bay, Benzie, Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Clare, Crawford, Emmet, Gladwin, Grand Traverse, Iosco, Isabella, Kalkaska, Lake, Leelanau, Manistee, Mason, Mecosta, Midland, Missaukee, Montmorency, Newaygo, Oceana, Ogemaw, Osceola, Oscoda, Otsego, Presque Isle, Roscommon and Wexford.

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