It's a problem that we've talked about before. People leave trash on the ice like they think it's going to melt on the snow. Cigarette butts, beer cans, fish guts, fishing shelters, empty propane canisters, food wrappers, and other disgusting stuff ends up in our lakes every spring when the ice melts. What's the penalty for people who litter on the lake? It's $100. That obviously is not deterring people enough from trashing our lakes.

It's absolutely disgusting to see what people leave behind. Trash that sinks to the bottom of the lake can also affect the fish spawning. Not to mention the hazards it creates for people who swim in the lake, or some of it that could float and damage boats.

Reading people's angry comments on the post show that many people believe there should be harsher punishments for people who litter on the lakes. I agree with them. In the scheme of what the DNR can do to punish you in other activities such as confiscating equipment, revoking privileges, and other things, it doesn't seem like a $100 fine is nearly enough. If you leave your shelter on the ice the DNR can take it or burn it down.

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Unfortunately there aren't enough conservation officers to find any prevent people from littering. Some have suggested that there be some time of reward system for turning in litter bugs. Other people suggest that they lose their hunting and fishing rights for a year. Maybe if more people started getting harsher fines and penalties, we might just be able to cut down on how much people litter.

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