Otter Tail County’s Dock and Riparian Use Ordinance requires docks and lifts to be registered with the county when being moved from one body of water to another. Minnesota law requires dock and lifts to be dried for 21 days before moving from one body of water to another.

“We recently computerized the dock and lift registry. Members of the public can now register their equipment from the comfort of their couch,” said Spencer McGrew, Otter Tail County’s Aquatic Invasive Species Specialist. 

The Dock and Lift Registry is designed to raise awareness about the 21-day dry time for docks and lifts. Docks and lifts can harbor adult zebra mussels, which are a serious aquatic invasive species. The mussels secrete a powerful adhesive to attach themselves to hard objects, including docks and lifts. They can also survive being dry for extended periods, closing their shells and “holding their breath.” The 21-day dry time is designed to kill zebra mussels that otherwise might hitch a ride from one lake to another on a dock or boatlift.

Dock and lift owners can register their equipment by calling (218) 998-8113 or by registering it online at

“As people upgrade their equipment and think about selling their old dock or lift, it is important to clean, drain, and dry them for 21 days,” said McGrew.

About Otter Tail County 

AIS Task Force

It is the Mission of the Otter Tail County Aquatic Invasive Species Task Force to develop programs and strategies to support and enhance the protection of Otter Tail County waters. 

In order to accomplish this, the Task Force will promote public awareness, education, containment, research and provide recommendations to the Otter Tail County Board of Commissioners.