New Turtle Regulations in Minnesota You Might Not Know About

ST. PAUL, MN ( – Minnesota has implemented new regulations regarding the taking of turtles, following legislative changes in 2021 and 2023. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is reminding residents of these important updates. Conservation Management and Rare Resources Supervisor Lacy LaVine highlights key changes:

  1. Commercial Harvest Prohibition: The commercial harvest of Western Painted Turtles and Common Snapping Turtles is now prohibited [4].
  2. Licensing Requirements: Anglers now need both an angling license and a recreational turtle license to legally take turtles [1].
  3. Prohibited Methods: The use of firearms or any implements that could impale turtles is prohibited [1].
  4. Size and Possession Limits: There are minimum size and possession limits for Western Painted Turtles [2].
  5. Protected Species: The taking of Spiny Softshell Turtles and other unspecified species is prohibited without an aquatic farm or private fish hatchery license with a turtle endorsement [1].

These regulations aim to enhance the protection and conservation of Minnesota’s native turtle populations.

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