Michigan Fishing License Rules Explained

Studying Time: 5 minutes

Bordering 4 of the 5 Nice Lakes, Michigan is all about severe sport fishing. A statewide custom for households from Detroit to Mackinaw Metropolis, you’ll have the choose of over 11,000 lakes, 3,000 rivers, and one of many longest large water coastlines in the entire nation. However earlier than you head off, listed below are some recommendations on find out how to get your Michigan fishing license!

Who wants a fishing license in Michigan?

Any angler over the age of 17 wants to purchase a fishing license, whether or not you’re by yourself or on a fishing constitution. Relying on whether or not you’re from Michigan or from out of state, you’ll have to use for separate permits. A resident is anybody who has been residing in MI constantly for six months or longer. You possibly can show this by way of your state-issued driver’s license or social safety quantity.

Whether or not you’re seeking to go fishing on the Nice Lakes, smaller lakes, or one of many quite a few rivers that make up Michigan’s productive waterways – one license suits all. Shopping for a fishing license in Michigan provides you the correct to fish on any physique of freshwater across the state.

Exceptions to Michigan Fishing License Necessities:

  • Youngsters aged 16 and beneath don’t want a fishing license to fish in Michigan
  • Adults aiding a toddler could assist arrange the fishing gear, bait the hook, and forged with out a fishing license. For all different fishing actions, an grownup will need to have their very own license
  • Michigan residents in lively obligation within the army companies don’t want to carry a license supplied they will show their standing
  • Resident veterans who’re unemployable attributable to incapacity can fish with out a license
  • Non-resident army personnel stationed in Michigan can get a license at resident costs
  • Registered blind residents are eligible for senior costs for his or her license

Michigan fishing license Value

Michigan state residents and non-residents can buy 24-hour and 72-hour licenses for a similar value. Nonetheless, costs differ for annual fishing licenses.

24 Hour License 72 Hour License Annual License
Resident $10 $30 $26
Non-resident $10 $30 $76
Senior resident $10 $30 $11

All state residents can benefit from the good low cost that an annual license supplies. Should you’re a senior citizen residing in Michigan, for simply $1 greater than your 1-day license, you’ll have the ability to purchase a yearly cross. For these between the ages of 17 and 65, the yearly license continues to be cheaper than a 3-day cross.

Should you’re from out-of-state, you’ll face an enormous leap in value, although, and pay $76 to your annual license. Together with the fishing license of their selecting, all non-residents additionally want to purchase a $1 Sportcard to go together with the license.

When do Michigan fishing licenses expire?

The fishing season in Michigan runs from March 31 yearly. However what does that imply to your license?

  • 24-hour and 72-hour licenses are legitimate for the time interval. From the second you buy them, you’ll have the precise devoted time to go fishing. Should you purchase your license forward of time, you’ll be able to select which date you want to it to be legitimate and it’ll stay legitimate for both 24 or 72 hours after that, relying on the license.
  • Each annual license will run up till March 31 the next 12 months

Can I get a lifetime license?

No. Regardless of proposals within the state legislature to deliver again lifetime fishing licenses in Michigan, there may be nonetheless no possibility to purchase a allow for the remainder of your life.

The place to Purchase a Michigan Fishing License

Michigan state has made a concerted effort to maintain up with expertise. This implies you may be fishing inside minutes of paying to your fishing license. Get your license in any of the next methods:

  • On-line. Each residents and non-residents are capable of apply for a fishing license on-line. It’s by no means been simpler! Present all the mandatory documentation and obtain the PDF type license and carry it in your cellular gadget or print it out.
  • In individual. All throughout the state, there are many official shops promoting fishing licenses. From bait and deal with shops to Walmart, there’s one in your doorstep.

Simply remember to present some type of proof of residency while you apply and be sure to have a type of identification alongside along with your license everytime you go fishing.

What to Do if You Lose Your License

The Michigan DNR recommends contacting their Assist Desk on 517-284-6057 within the occasion of dropping your license. They may let you understand what to do to retrieve your allow and get again on the water instantly.

Fishing Different States With a MI Fishing License

With the wealth of water on provide throughout the state of Michigan, you don’t really want to move into one other state to go fishing. However it’s fairly straightforward to cross over into Wisconsin, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and even Canadian waters with out that means to. Fortunately, Michigan has offers with the next states:


Residents of each Michigan and Indiana can fish in one another’s interstate waters with simply the one license. An settlement between the 2 states implies that when you have a resident-issued Michigan fishing license, you’ll be able to wander alongside the southern basin of Lake Michigan and smaller our bodies of water alongside the state border and fish free of charge.


You possibly can benefit from loads of Wisconsin and Michigan’s wealthy and productive waters with the identical fishing license. Should you fish any of the intrastate waters, together with components of Lake Michigan or Lake Superior, your Michigan fishing license shall be legitimate in Wisconsin, and a Wisconsin license shall be legitimate in Michigan – whether or not you’re a resident or not! Discover out which areas this is applicable to right here.

Should you catch a Sturgeon or a Musky, you could adhere to every state’s rules. Anybody with a Wisconsin license in Michigan should report back to the MI county authorities the place it was caught. Should you’re a Michigan-licensed angler in Wisconsin, you’ll must get your WI Sturgeon tag beforehand. Whereas MI residents can get this for $20, these of you from neither Wisconsin nor Michigan should pay $50.

Frequent Questions on MI Licenses

  1. Do I want a fishing tag?

    No. You not want a tag to catch protected species like Sturgeon and Muskie. Nonetheless, you do must report your catch, both on the DNR web site or by telephone at 844-345-FISH.

  2. Do I want a separate license for ice fishing?

    No. When ice fishing in Michigan, you simply want the identical freshwater fishing license as all through the remainder of the 12 months. Should you’re utilizing an ice hut, it is best to simply guarantee that your full title and handle or driver’s license quantity is seen on each facet.

  3. Can non-residents get a senior low cost?

    No. Sadly, there aren’t any reductions out there for non-residents.

  4. How previous do I must be to get a senior license?

    65. Senior licenses can be found for anybody aged 65 or over.

  5. Do I want a license to fish on personal property?

    It relies upon. If the water you're fishing is completely enclosed by your land (equivalent to a non-public pond), you don't want a license. Nonetheless, if it borders you land (equivalent to a river) you do.

We tried to cowl the whole lot you should find out about licenses in Michigan. Should you nonetheless have questions, we advocate getting in contact along with your native DNR workplace. If not, it’s time to seize your rod, perhaps e book an area constitution, and get fishing!

Leave a Comment