Manitoba, with its vast array of lakes and rivers, offers some of the best fishing opportunities in Canada. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a beginner, fishing in Manitoba is an experience you won’t want to miss.
This guide will provide you with all the information you need to plan your next fishing adventure, including the types of fish you can catch, the best fishing spots, the rules and regulations you need to follow, and the costs associated with fishing in Manitoba.
- Cost of Fishing in Manitoba
- Fishing Rules and Regulations in Manitoba
- Understanding Manitoba Fishing Season Dates
- Navigating Changes in Manitoba Fishing Laws in 2023
- Types of Fish in Manitoba
- Best Fishing Spots in Manitoba
Cost of Fishing in Manitoba
The cost of fishing in Manitoba can vary depending on several factors. Here are the costs for angling licenses as of 2023:
- Manitoba Resident (16-64 years old): One-day license – $8.00, Annual license – $25.00.
- Senior (Age 65 and Older): No License Required
- Active Military Member or Veteran: No License Required
- Canadian Resident (16 years and older): One-day license – $12.00, Annual license – $47.00.
- Non-Canadian Resident (16 years and older): One-day license – $19.00, Annual license – $62.00.
Remember, these costs do not include GST and an administration fee, which will be added to all angling licenses.
Fishing Rules and Regulations in Manitoba
Fishing in Manitoba is regulated by the Provincial Fisheries Act and the Fisheries Act of Canada. Here are some key points to remember:
- Angling License: All anglers aged 16 and over are required to have a valid Manitoba fishing license. Licenses may be printed or carried on an electronic device, and anglers must be able to show their angling license to an Officer upon request.
- Bait Restrictions: Certain types of bait are prohibited to protect local fish populations. Nightcrawlers, earthworms, leeches, frogs, and salamanders can be used as bait in all fishing divisions in Manitoba. However, the possession of crayfish is prohibited.
- Catch and Release: Certain fish species must be released if caught. All walleye, sauger, trout, smallmouth bass, and channel catfish entered must be released.
- Ice Fishing: Anglers may use only one rod and line, except during ice fishing, when two may be used. Only two hooks or lures may be used per line. Anglers must, when fishing in open water, keep their line in sight at all times, and when ice fishing, stay within 50 m of the line.
- Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS): To stop the spread of AIS, you must clean, drain, and dry your watercraft and equipment before placing it into another water body. Dispose of bait possessed in an AIS Control Zone before leaving the shore.
Understanding Manitoba Fishing Season Dates
When planning your fishing trip in Manitoba, it’s crucial to be aware of the fishing season dates. These dates are set to ensure the sustainability of fish populations and vary depending on the species and location.
Key Points to Remember:
- General Fishing Season: As of 2023, the general fishing season in Manitoba opens on May 13 and closes on March 31 of the following year. This period is when most fish species are active and feeding, providing excellent opportunities for anglers. Whether you’re targeting Walleye, Northern Pike, or Lake Trout, understanding the general fishing season is crucial for planning your fishing adventure.
- Species-Specific Seasons: Some species and locations may have different season dates. For example, certain species, like the Lake Sturgeon, have specific seasons due to their unique breeding patterns. Always check the latest regulations before heading out to ensure you’re fishing within the legal dates. This not only helps protect the fish populations but also ensures you’re abiding by the Manitoba fishing laws.
- Year-Round Fishing: Certain fish species can be fished year-round. This includes species like the Northern Pike and Walleye, which are popular targets for ice fishing during the winter months. Year-round fishing opportunities allow you to enjoy the thrill of fishing no matter the season.
Navigating Changes in Manitoba Fishing Laws in 2023
Every year, there may be changes to the fishing laws in Manitoba to adapt to changing environmental conditions and ensure the sustainability of fish populations.
Significant Changes in 2023:
- One-Day Angling License: In 2023, a one-day angling license option was introduced. This change provides more flexibility for anglers, especially those who only plan to fish for a day. Whether you’re a resident or a non-resident, you can now enjoy the thrill of fishing in Manitoba without committing to a longer-term license.
- Year-Round Fishing: Another notable change in 2023 is the year-round fishing opportunities for certain species across the province. This change allows anglers to enjoy fishing at any time of the year, provided they follow the specific regulations for the species they are targeting. This means more opportunities to enjoy the sport you love, no matter the season.
Types of Fish in Manitoba
Manitoba’s diverse aquatic ecosystems are home to a wide variety of fish species. Here are some of the most popular ones among anglers:
- Walleye: Known for their fighting spirit and delicious taste, Walleye are a favorite among Manitoba anglers.
- Northern Pike: These aggressive predators are thrilling to catch and can be found in many of Manitoba’s lakes and rivers.
- Lake Trout: Found in the colder, deeper waters of Manitoba’s northern lakes, Lake Trout are a prized catch for many anglers.
- Rainbow Trout: These beautiful fish are stocked in several lakes and ponds throughout Manitoba.
- Smallmouth Bass: Known for their aggressive strikes and acrobatic fights, Smallmouth Bass are a favorite among sport anglers.
Best Fishing Spots in Manitoba
Manitoba is known for its numerous lakes and rivers that offer excellent fishing opportunities. Here are some of the top spots:
- Lake Winnipeg: Renowned for its Walleye and Northern Pike, Lake Winnipeg is a must-visit for any angler.
- Lake Manitoba: This large lake offers excellent Walleye, Northern Pike, and Perch opportunities.
- Red River: A hot spot for Channel Catfish, the Red River is a favorite among local and visiting anglers.
- Whiteshell Provincial Park: With numerous lakes and rivers, this park offers a variety of fishing opportunities.
How much is a non-resident fishing license in Manitoba?
From the latest information I could find, a non-resident one-year fishing license in Manitoba will cost 62$.
Are fishing licenses free for seniors in Manitoba?
Yes, senior fishing licenses are free in Manitoba
Can you buy a Manitoba fishing license in a store?
Yes, there are participating retailers in Manitoba that are able to sell printable fishing licenses in their stores.
What is the Walleye limit in Manitoba?
Currently, the Walleye limit in Manitoba is four fish that do not exceed any more than 55 cm in length.
Fishing in Manitoba offers a unique and rewarding experience for both novice and experienced anglers. With its diverse fish species and abundant fishing spots, there’s something for everyone. However, it’s essential to be aware of the rules and regulations, including the need for a fishing license, to ensure a lawful and enjoyable fishing experience.
By following these regulations, you’re not only complying with the law but also contributing to the sustainability of Manitoba’s precious aquatic resources.
So, whether you’re planning a day trip or a week-long fishing adventure, Manitoba is the place to be.