Are lighted fishing lures illegal? All things about your lure (2024)

In addition to traditional fishing, fishermen will find ways to improve their fishing equipment to quickly harvest more fish. And it is no exception that lighted fishing lures are also one of them. However, to see if it is valid or not, let’s look at this article.

Are lighted fishing lures illegal?

Lighted fishing lures are not legal. Some places like Wyoming will ban the use of artificial light to assist in attracting or catching fish. In Ontario, it is illegal to use artificial lights to attract fish, but there are exceptions for rainbows, lake whitefish, or lake herring (cisco) if you are fishing with a dip net or if the light is part of a lure attached to a line used in fishing. However, there are also states in the US that do not prohibit this, such as Indiana and Utah.

lighted fishing lures

Why are lighted fishing lures illegal?

Fishing with lights will be beneficial because they act as bait and attract many different types of fish. However, the most significant risk left will still be the environment.

Destroy the habitat of fishes

Introducing artificial light into underwater ecosystems can disrupt natural processes or, more specifically, directly impact the habitat of marine life. Lighted lures will cause light pollution and affect the behavior of fish, insects, and other organisms. For example, lights can attract bait fish and lead to overconcentration in specific areas. Predator and prey dynamics can change, leading to overall ecosystem balance. If fish can hunt, they will be less effective because predators rely on darkness to hunt. Or even feeding patterns and interactions with prey may change.

Affects the number of fish in the sea

You may overexploit certain species as the light will simultaneously concentrate around many fish and other predatory fish. You could even catch bycatch if non-target species like sea turtles may become entangled or trapped near a light source. In particular, sea turtles are attracted to light and can get caught in fishing gear. Finally, if some fish species spend less time near light, their feeding and breeding cycles will be affected.

It could be harassment and disturbance

In some states, lighted fishing lures are illegal because they can be used to harass wildlife or annoy other fishermen. At that time, the light will easily attract attention to the creatures, and if the hunting is too large, the fishermen will feel it, affecting their lifestyle. However, it will be insignificant compared to the consequences of changing the fish’s lifestyle.

Related questions

Can you throw lures at night?

The answer is yes, and there are even quite common cases, such as bass fishing. Anglers have often used spinnerbait as bait to lure bass when fishing at night for many years. Poppers will be a great choice for topwater bait when fishing at night due to their slow catchability. Additionally, big worms 10″ or larger are great to catch in the summer, especially after dark.

Can you use lighted lures in MN?

Based on the latest law enacted by the state of MN in 2023, using artificial lights to lure or attract fish or to see fish underwater is prohibited. However, fishermen will still have some exceptions when attaching illuminated artificial baits to the hook at the end of the fishing line or using lures with lights for spearing. In addition, the requirement that batteries used in fishing lures not contain mercury or be restricted to fishing with arrows.

What lures are illegal in Minnesota?

In the state of MN, the use of Baitcloud or similar products is considered illegal because this product violates MN law regarding the use of artificial baits. Specifically, these products will attract fish’s attention with scent, sound, and visual attractants. And to use this product, you must put many chemicals into the sea to be successful. Remember that chemical attractants are not an approved method of catching fish. Dropping a lure ball into the water is considered trash throwing or throwing.

Wrap up

To know if lighted fishing lures are illegal, try to look up this information before you start fishing in the state you are about to visit. Some states will absolutely ban this, but some states will be more open or introduce other regulations.

However, in general, fishing with lighted lures will give some negative impacts on the environment. And in my opinion, I would refrain from doing this.

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