Fishing

Lakes


Little Falls area fisheries

Office address

Map of Little Falls work area

16543 Haven Road
Little Falls, MN 56345
320-616-2450
littlefalls.fisheries@state.mn.us

Minnesota map showing Little Falls location

Anglers who fish in Benton, Morrison, Mille Lacs and Todd county benefit from the management, habitat and oversight work of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources' Little Falls area fisheries staff.

Area Fisheries Supervisor Eric Altena and a staff of four full-time and two part-time employees manage 90 fishing lakes and 471 miles of rivers and streams. These waters include popular fishing destinations such as Alexander, Big BirchLicense Dollars At Work campaign link and Shamineau lakes plus portions of the Mississippi, Crow Wing, Rum and Sauk rivers.

  • Area highlights
  • Fishing license increase
  • Notices & links
  • Area staff

At work for you

Fisheries staff monitors erosion and fish habitat degradation on Little Rock Creek.

Fisheries staff monitors erosion and fish habitat degradation on Little Rock Creek.

  • Stock two water bodies with pure-strain muskellunge.
  • Stock 38 lakes with walleye fry or fingerlings.
  • Produce and stock 1,500-5,000 lbs. of walleye fingerlings each year.
  • Produce up to 5,000 muskelunge fingerlings each year.
  • Provide fish for two county fair displays.
  • Provide support for watershed districts and youth education efforts.

Facts about the fishing license fee increase

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Why Little Falls area fisheries needs a license fee increase

Virtually all the work of the Little Falls area fisheries staff is funded by money raised through fishing license sales. But reductions in buying power due to increasing costs for products, services and equipment have put this work and the recreational opportunities it creates at risk.

In response, the DNR is seeking a fishing license fee increase in the 2017 legislative session. The increase would raise the price of a resident annual fishing license from $22 to $25. Other fishing license types also would increase. The proposed increases should sustain existing fisheries operations until 2021.

The increase for an individual license – roughly the price of a scoop of minnows – may fill some existing vacancies but will not create any new positions. It will simply sustain existing programs and area office budgets, many of which already are reduced.

What happens with a fee increaseWhat happens without a fee increase
 

State lottery & legacy amendment dollars are off limits

Clean Water Land & Legacy Fund logo Enviornment and Natural Resources Trust Fund logo

State law prohibits tax dollars, including funds generated by the Minnesota Legacy Amendment and Minnesota State Lottery, from funding area fisheries offices and the core work they do. Fisheries management that creates world-class fishing here in Minnesota is a user-funded, user-benefit system.

General hunting and fishing license fees were last increased in 2012 at an amount designed to keep game and fish operations solvent for about six years. Prior to that, it had been 10 years since the last general fee increase. Periodic fee increases – one about every five years since 1970 – are how Minnesota funds routine fisheries management. Many fishing organizations traditionally have supported periodic fee increases because high-quality fishing is recreation worth paying for.

In November 2016, the Game and Fish Fund Budget Oversight Committee – a citizen group that monitors the DNR's fisheries, wildlife and enforcement revenues and expenditures – recommended that the Legislature increase fishing and hunting license fees during the 2017 legislative session.

The DNR's fisheries section has a long tradition of belt-tightening. Statewide, staff size is down about 13 percent from roughly a decade ago. Moreover, the section is holding an additional 24 vacancies, most of which will not be filled even with fee increase. This means it is common for field offices to have fewer employees and leaner budgets than they once did.

Notices, web links & area information

Contact our Little Falls staff

Name
Position
Phone
Email
Eric Altena Area supervisor 320-616-2450, Ext. 225 eric.altena@state.mn.us
Brady Becker Assistant area supervisor 320-616-2450, Ext. 226 brady.becker@state.mn.us
Steve Marod Fishereis specialist 320-616-2450, Ext. 239 steve.marod@state.mn.us
Tanner Stevens Fisheris specialist 320-616-2450, Ext. 227 tanner.stevens@state.mn.us
Larry Zimmerman Fisheries technician 320-616-2450, Ext. 247 larry.zimmerman@state.mn.us
Audrey Kuchinski Aquatic plant specialist 320-616-2450, Ext. 235 audrey.kuchinski@state.mn.us
Roxi Lukasavitz Office administrative specialist 320-616-2450, Ext. 221 roxi.lukasavitz@state.mn.us