Taking a nuisance animal

Nuisance animals are wildlife (not domesticated animals like dogs or cats) that cause property damage. Some animals which are normally protected by Minnesota Statute can be taken without a license or permit if they are doing damage. The animals included under this provision of Minnesota law include: mink, squirrels, rabbit, hare, raccoon, bobcat, fox, muskrat, opossum and beaver. Other unprotected birds include the English sparrow, starling, and common pigeon. All of these animals may be taken by the landowner, manager or occupant if the animal is causing property damage.

When taking protected nuisance animals, notify a Conservation Officer within 24 hours. Please refer any inquiries you may have regarding this list to the DNR Information Center. What does "taking" mean? Taking means capturing, relocating or killing a nuisance animal. This can be done in any manner except by the use of poison, artificial lights or with a motor vehicle. The most common methods for taking an animal would be with a firearm or bow and arrow. These methods, however, cannot be used everywhere. A person should consult local laws before applying controls.

In many urban areas or areas regulated by local ordinance, an individual may be restricted to live trapping. Many of the pages here will give suggestions as to how this is best accomplished. Once the animal is caught, a person may choose to destroy or relocate the animal. If one chooses to relocate a captured wild animal, it should be relocated 10 to 15 miles from where it was captured in order to ensure that it does not return. It is necessary to obtain permission from the governing agency or landowner before releasing the animal. Remember to consult local laws before applying controls.