Many outdoor enthusiasts are likely wondering where the time has gone.
It’s that time of year to start planning the removal of your ice hut from area lakes.
Huts located in West Hip, North Bay and on Lake Nipissing (Zone 11) have to be removed by March 31 but check the Fisheries Management Zones table and map below for other areas and different dates.
Map courtesy of the MNRF
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry is reminding anglers that many lakes across the province have significant slush conditions. You need to plan ahead in order to remove your ice hut on time.
Conservation Officers encourage anglers to make sure their huts are placed on the ice in a way that prevents them from freezing into the ice, such as blocking the skids up off the ice which will make removal easier to do when it comes time for removal.
Ice hut owners are responsible to remove all debris and garbage from the ice in the vicinity of their ice huts. Leaving debris frozen in the ice becomes an environmental and a public safety concern as boaters could collide with wooden blocks, tarps, ice hut parts, etc.
Conservation officers ask that all ice hut owners start now developing a plan and implementing it on how they will remove their ice huts before the specified deadline, do not wait until the last minute to move them. For instance, packing a trail to the ice hut shows responsible ownership.
If ice huts remain out on the ice beyond the specified deadline, the matter will be investigated and may result in charges being laid against the owner(s) of the hut.
Remember, it is an offence under the Public Lands Act to leave your ice hut out after the ice breaks up, regardless of whether registration and removal dates apply.
Have further questions? Be sure to reach out to your local MNRF enforcement unit as conservation officers are there to help you and answer any questions you may have. To report a natural resources violation, call the MNRF TIPS line at 1-877-847-7667 toll-free any time or contact your local ministry office during regular business hours. You can also call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477). And, visit Ontario.ca/mnrftips to view an interactive, searchable map of unsolved cases. You may be able to provide information that will help solve a case.