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Waterways

Protect the waters of the state

You can help us preserve Wisconsin waters for current and future enjoyment.

Why We Regulate Waterways

Waterway regulations keep waterways safe and accessible to all Wisconsinites

All Water Permits

Find the permits you need for your waterfront property projects in the DNR’s ePermitting system

Construction Projects

Explore waterways regulations related to construction projects, including dredging, ponds and a variety of structures

Shoreline Protection Projects

Explore waterways regulations for stream bank erosion control, lakeshore maintenance, and beach maintenance

Waterways Contacts

Waterway Cleanup FAQ

Determine what permits may be required for cleaning up debris on waterways from storms and other natural hazards

Crossings

Explore waterways regulations for bridges, culverts, fords, and temporary crossings
Crossings

Water Levels

Find waterways regulations for lake levels, withdrawals and irrigation, and information about dams
Water Levels

Recreation Projects

Explore waterways regulations for boat structures, piers and docks, buoys, and more
Recreation Projects

Habitat Projects

Find waterways regulations for aquatic plant management, fish habitat projects, and other wildlife habitat activities
Habitat Projects

Public Trust Doctrine

Learn about how the public trust doctrine works to provide access to Wisconsin waterways
Public Trust Doctrine

Waterways Permit Process

Review key aspects and timelines for general and individual waterways permit applications, such as fees and exemptions
Waterways Permit Process