Section of Fisheries

A guide to aquatic plants


Steve Enger, Coordinator
500 Lafayette Road Box 25
St Paul, MN 55155-4025
tel. (651) 259-5092

Aquatic Plant Management Program

Program Information

Aquatic plants growing in public waters are owned by the state. The purpose of the Aquatic Plant Management Program is to protect native vegetation and the aquatic environment from unnecessary harm while allowing lakeshore homeowners to control some aquatic vegetation for water access. The use of pesticides in lakes to control submerged vegetation or aquatic nuisances, the use of automated plant control devices, or the destruction of emergent vegetation by any means, require DNR permits. Permits are issued by Regional Fisheries Managers. All four DNR regions are staffed by Aquatic Plant Management Specialists.

Overall program coordination is also managed by staff in the Division of Fish and Wildlife. These staff are responsible for developing and providing educational and informational materials for permit applicants; for providing technical advice to the general public; for coordinating with the Department of Agriculture on herbicide regulations; for updating and revising the aquatic plant management rules; for working with commercial aquatic plant harvesters; and for coordinating statewide efforts with the regional fisheries aquatic plant management specialists. The program includes a full-time aquatic plant botanist responsible for focusing research on native aquatic plant communities.

The Aquatic Management Program also includes an effort directed at pesticide enforcement. Aquatic pesticide enforcement specialists supervise herbicide treatments and investigate reports of the misuse of pesticides in lakes or the unlawful destruction of aquatic vegetation.

Permit Applications

(The following are This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it. files.)

The application for aquatic plant management permit is in a PDF form below. Please use the most-recent version of Acrobat Reader ( to complete the form. Once completed, print the file and mail the completed form, and payment, to the appropriate regional office; explained in the instructions. The form may also be printed and completed long hand if you wish. However, completing the form electronically is preferred. If the form is not working, follow the Acrobat Reader link ( and re-install the most-current version. If something is amiss on your computer, re-installing the free Adobe program usually corrects the problem.

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Information Resources