FREDERICTON (GNB) – Ice-fishing shelters must be removed from all provincial waterways by March 10 in the southern part of New Brunswick and by March 31 in the northern part of the province.

“Ice fishing is an excellent and healthy way to enjoy our natural waterways and environment,” said Environment and Local Government Minister Serge Rousselle. “That is why we all need to do our part to ensure good environmental stewardship.”

Ice fishers have a responsibility to ensure that they do not harm the environment. Owners of shelters must remove them before waterways thaw, or by the respective deadlines of March 10 and March 31. Owners are encouraged to monitor the weather and remove their structures before they become an environmental hazard.

“With changing weather patterns, it is more important than ever for owners of ice fishing shelters to be vigilant in maintaining their shelters so we can protect our waterways,” said Rousselle.

Waste and debris resulting from either poor site management or failure to remove shelters before spring breakup pose a risk to provincial waterways.

Signs are posted at popular ice-fishing sites, reminding shelter owners to respect waterway regulations and how to properly maintain their shelters until the end of the fishing season.

The department encourages all New Brunswickers to be responsible stewards of the environment, and to report any infraction of environmental regulations.