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Registration to sell aquatic organisms

State law requires those selling live, non-native aquatic organisms in Michigan to register and report to the DNR

Registration requirement

Pet shops, nurseries and other businesses or hobbyists selling live, non-native aquatic species must register annually with the DNR. The requirement comes as part of legislation that amended Sec. 41329 of Act 451, P.A. 1994, effective Mar. 21, 2019.

A separate registration is required for each location of sale. Anyone selling at trade shows must register separately for each sale event.

A confirmation number is provided for each registration. The seller is required to retain and conspicuously post the confirmation number at the sale location as proof of registration. 

Registration expires on Dec. 31 of the issuing year and must be updated each year.

Who needs to register?

Anyone selling live aquatic animals or plants in Michigan, including:
  • Wholesale vendors.
  • Retail vendors and shops.
  • Hobbyists.
  • Water garden shops and nurseries.

Exemptions to the registration requirement include:

Register here

Print Certificate of Registration

Reporting requirement

A person or entity required to register to sell live, nonnative aquatic species must also report sale information to the DNR.  The seller's registration confirmation number will be needed for reporting.

Registrants are required to report the name and number of individuals of each aquatic species sold using the online reporting form. Some species are exempt from reporting; however, all sellers must submit a report regardless of the species sold. The form provides additional information on species exemptions.

The annual report should include species sold from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31.

Report here

Required notification for trade shows, auctions or sales events

If you are hosting an event where live, non-native aquatic organisms will be sold or auctioned, you must notify the DNR at least 10 days before the event by using the form below. 

Regarding registration requirements as described above, if all sales transactions are handled by the auction host and sale proceeds go to the host, not the donors, then individual club members or auction members are not required to register. 

If individuals are selling organisms and handling the sales transactions at the auction, these individuals will have to register themselves, and the "Business Location" when registering will be the address where the auction is occurring.

Provide notification of an event

What is the DNR doing with this information?

Live non-native organisms, if released into the environment, have the potential to become invasive. This information is helping the DNR track which species are being sold in the state of Michigan. By tracking which species are being sold, the DNR can increase awareness of future potential invaders that could harm Michigan's environment or economy. 

Helpful Information

Frequently asked questions: Registering to sell aquatic organisms - printable PDF