Current 2020 Mille Lacs Lake Fishing Regulations

Including tributaries to posted boundaries


Regulations on this page effective November 6th, 20202

Mille Lacs Lake has special fishing regulations that differ from statewide or border water regulations for those species identified below and take precedence. Unless specified below, all general regulations, season dates, limits, possession, transportation, and border water regulations apply. 

  • Northern Pike: Beginning May 9, 2020, through March 31, 2021, all northern pike greater than 30 inches must be immediately released. Limit of three. Same regulations for spearing, which concludes Sunday, Feb. 28, 2021.
  • Small mouth and Large mouth Bass: Beginning May 9, 2020, through May 22, 2020, all bass must be immediately released. Beginning May 23, 2020, all bass greater than 17 inches must be immediately released. Limit of three in combination. Small mouth harvest ends Sunday, Sept. 13. Large mouth harvest ends Sunday, Feb. 28, 2021.
  • Tullibee (Cisco): Possession limit 10.
  • Walleye: Beginning August 1, 2020, through November 30, 2020, all walleye must be immediately released. Beginning Dec. 1, 2020, through Sunday, Feb. 28, 2021, the possession limit is one walleye between 21-23 inches or one fish longer than 28 inches. All other walleye must be immediately released.
  • No culling or live-well sorting: Fish taken into possession are considered part of an angler’s bag limit and cannot be exchanged with another fish. However, when the season for bass is open, small mouth bass and large mouth bass may be culled following statewide culling rules.
  • Night Closure:
    • Effective 10 p.m. on May 11 through 11:59 p.m. on November 30
    • From May 11 through June 5, no fishing for any species from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.
    • From June 6 through November 30, no fishing from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. except for species and methods listed below:
      • Muskellunge and northern pike may be targeted with artificial lures longer than 8 inches or sucker minnows longer than 8 inches. While fishing during the night closure, you may not possess or target any species other than muskellunge or northern pike.
      • Bow fishing for rough fish is allowed beginning June 6 – You may not possess angling equipment while bow fishing and only rough fish may be in possession.
  • Bait Restriction: Beginning July 1, 2020, through July 31, 2020, alive, dead, preserved, or parts of minnows, fish, nightcrawlers, worms, leeches, and crayfish may not be used as bait. Sucker minnows longer than 8 inches may be used as bait.

Tagged Fish: Please record the tag number, species, fish length, date & place caught, angler type (e.g. boat, launch, shore, ice, etc.), and whether released (leave tag attached) or kept (send tag). Postcards are available at public accesses & businesses on Mille Lacs Lake. Fish can be reported by:

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