DNR launches bait shop locator application to assist public

New tool can be used by anglers planning to purchase bait during their trip..
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Statewide DNR News

June 30, 2016

Contact: Tom Goniea, 517-284-5830 or Elyse Walter, 517-284-5839

DNR launches bait shop locator application to assist public

Screenshot of Retail Bait Shop Locator applicationThe Michigan Department of Natural Resources recently launched a new tool on its website that assists individuals with locating retail bait shops across Michigan. The Retail Bait Shop Locator is a comprehensive map featuring licensed bait retailers that sell minnows, wigglers and crayfish to the general public.

The web-based application is ideal for those planning trips across the state who might need to purchase bait along the way. It can be found by visiting Michigan.gov/fishing and clicking on Fishing in Michigan, and then Commercial Bait Industry in the left navigation. The Retail Bait Shop Locator is not a downloadable app, but is compatible with all types of electronic devices.

Anglers regularly contact the DNR to inquire about where to purchase live bait. This application was developed to help anglers get the information they need. The DNR regulates this industry and issues minnow dealer licenses annually throughout the state, which will allow the Retail Bait Shop Locator to stay up to date each year.

“We would advise the public to always call any listed retail outlet found in the application before making a trip to purchase bait,” said DNR fisheries biologist Tom Goniea. “Some locations are seasonal or have varied hours and may not carry an angler’s preferred bait.”

The Retail Bait Shop Locator lives within a new section of the DNR’s website that is dedicated to the commercial bait industry. Found on the Commercial Bait Industry page, this website provides tons of information on this little-known sector, including harvest regulations, where bait harvest occurs, how live bait gets from the wild to local bait shops, the economic impact of bait collection and sales, and much more.

The DNR believes the new Commercial Bait Industry page will be useful to the public in better understanding how valuable bait is in Michigan. The site will be updated with new information and retail locations for bait purchase as necessary.

/Note to editors: Accompanying photos are available below for download. Suggested captions follow.

RetailBaitShopLocator-screenshot: Visitors to the Retail Bait Shop Locator will be greeted by a screen that highlights the locations of retail bait shops in Michigan.

Sorting Minnows into Grader: The bait industry is an important part of Michigan's economy. The DNR, through a new section of its website, hopes to raise awareness of how that industry works./


The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state’s natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to www.michigan.gov/dnr.

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