From the DNR:
*Some vacant area updates came in late and are posted at the end.
District 1 – Baudette area
CO Ben Huener (Roseau) monitored angling and boating activity on the Warroad River and Lake of the Woods. A boat with two anglers was found in possession of 17 walleyes over their limit, including multiple illegal length fish. Other violations for the week included operating a watercraft under the influence of alcohol and other anglers in possession of illegal length walleyes. Area ATV activity was also checked.
CO Jeremy Woinarowicz (Thief River Falls) checked area anglers and ATV operators. Calls for gray wolf depredation and nuisance bears were addressed. Enforcement action for the week included allowing illegal operation of ATV by juvenile, watercraft registration and equipment violations, angle without valid license and non-resident purchase resident licenses.
CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck) monitored fishing, boating activity and AIS compliance on Upper Red Lake and special regulation lakes. Time was spent on a follow up investigation from a commercial taxidermy inspection. CO Regas patrolled area ORV, OHM and ATV trails. Assistance was given to the Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office with a fire call where a gentleman had obtained a burning permit to burn a brush pile. However, while obtaining the burning permit from a local Fire Warden the gentleman failed to inform the Fire Warden the brush pile was inside his aging chicken coop. Upon ignition of the brush pile the coop burned and the fire spread to an equipment shed and one other structure neither of which the gentleman intended to burn down. Enforcement action was taken for fail to control a permit fire. Enforcement action for the week included fishing, boating and registration violations.
CO Robert Gorecki (Baudette) monitored angling and ATV activity throughout the week. High waters and debris from recent rains has reduced clarity and made boating difficult on the Rainy River. Recent rains have significantly raised water levels throughout the area. Anglers and boaters are reminded to slow down to avoid erosion of the river banks and striking objects in the river.
Blackduck #2 – vacant.
Karlstad – vacant.
Thief River Falls #2 – vacant.
Warroad #1 – vacant.
Warroad #2 – vacant.
District 2 – Bemidji area
CO Tom Hutchins (Crookston) reports checking a suspected wolf depredation complaint. Time was also spent inspecting possible wetland and public waters violation sites. Anglers and watercraft operators were also checked. Boat operators and anglers were also reminded about various AIS related laws. Violations included multiple persons fishing without licenses and various watercraft violations.
CO Dan Malinowski (Fosston) monitored ATVs, angling, boating, public access storage problems, high water/beaver disputes and a wetland fill. He planned another FAS class, participated on radio public events and a take a kid fishing day. One individual was told to take down birdfeeders since he had a problem bear. He placed them just inside a door with a window and the bear took that as an invite to come in for dinner.
CO Tim Gray (Bagley) checked anglers, assisted at the CO Academy and took numerous wildlife calls.
CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji) checked anglers and boaters on area lakes during the week. CO Vollbrecht assisted with watercraft training week for the academy at Camp Ripley. Officer Vollbrecht taught the laws portion of an ATV safety class. A call of a deer being shot during the early morning hours was investigated with the sheriff’s department. The suspect fled on foot into a wooded area with a loaded rifle. The deer and vehicle were seized. The investigation continues and charges are pending.
CO Brian Holt (Bemidji) checked anglers and patrolled area forest roads for OHV activity. Time was also spent working AIS. A complaint was received of individuals living at a camp site in the Mississippi Headwaters State Forest.
CO Gary Forsberg (Pelican Rapids) reports a busy weekend with high boat traffic. Fishermen were finding good walleye activity with panfish starting to bite better. Time was also spent working on waters violations, removal of aquatic vegetation, orphaned ducklings and time was spent talking to the Twin Valley youth firearms safety class.
CO Angie Warren (Detroit Lakes) checked anglers and boating activity on area lakes. Follow up was conducted on a reported illegally taken fish and illegal activity in WMAs. Reports of unlawful aquatic vegetation cutting and possible over limit angling activity were investigated. CO Warren received calls of an injured bald eagle, injured deer, and an osprey nest that was blown down during recent storms. ATV activity was also worked.
WREO Joe Stattelman spent the week working AIS law compliance around the Becker, Otter Tail, Polk, Mahnomen, Clay and Clearwater counties. Time was spent checking boaters and fishermen at public access points. Time was also spent at the CO Academy assisting with Use of Force training scenarios. Assistance was given with interviews on an ongoing musky case. Several WCA cases were worked on with Local Gov’t Units and county attorneys.
Moorhead – vacant.
District 3 – Fergus Falls area
CO Troy Richards (Fergus Falls) continues to observe increased activity on area lakes. Reports of additional nuisance beaver complaints and questions relating to angling have been handled. Snapping turtles continue to migrate across the roads and motorists need to exercise caution so they don’t hit them with their vehicles.
CO Tricia Plautz (Henning) assisted the county with a careless boat operator and cited an individual for possession of freshwater clams. The officer checked boaters and fishermen throughout the week. A walleye tournament was monitored with many walleye caught over the weekend. PWC complaints were handled and AIS enforcement was worked.
CO Paul Nelson (Elbow Lake) worked complaints of nuisance beaver, ATVs and temporarily abandoned fawn deer. Additional time was spent checking fishermen, boaters and AIS compliance. Commercial enforcement was worked as well as a case of an individual putting fill in a lake.
CO Shane Osborne (Evansville) prepared the region air boat for potential flood call outs. Calls in regards to floating docks, nuisance beaver problems and boating law questions were answered. Fishermen and ATVs were checked with good compliance. Several boats were checked throughout the week and Osborne found few problems with AIS violations.
CO Mitch Lawler (Alexandria) reports high water activity throughout the week proved to be a challenge for lake home owners with docks nearly underwater. Boaters and PWC operators were out in full force with good compliance found. Fishing activity was monitored with lots of big panfish being caught. Enforcement action was taken on a camper who camped for the entire week at Lake Carlos State Park and left without paying. It was discovered that this same camper also owed Douglas County Parks Department money for camping at their campground the previous week and not paying them. AIS and ATV activity continued to be monitored as well.
CO Jeff Johanson (Osakis) continued to work fishing, boating, and AIS enforcement on and around area waterways. AIS compliance continues to be good throughout the area. Floating bog issues continue to be dealt with on area lakes. Discarded rough fish continue to be found at popular bow fishing and spearing areas. In other areas, fish are removed from the kill site only to be dumped in road ditches a short distance away. The public is not happy about this activity and calls seem to come in on a weekly basis. Additional time was spent working ATV enforcement and possible shoreline alterations. Several days were spent at Camp Ripley instructing at the CO Academy.
CO Tony Anderson (Morris) focused enforcement efforts on fishing and boating activity. Anglers report that fishing has slowed on area lakes. COs Anderson and Baumbarger worked Lake Minnewaska. The COs assisted a stranded boater with a tow back to the access after their boating outing turned into motor troubles. Anderson issued an RPN to a local business for placing fill in a wetland next to a parking area. Another local contracting business was issued paperwork for failing to file the required BWSR “work in wetland contractor’s responsibility” form. Minnow transportation permits were issued as well as calls handled regarding goose shooting permits, mowing in a nesting area and boating questions.
CO Daniel Baumbarger (Glenwood) reports enforcement efforts for the week included checking fishermen, boaters, ATV operators, and following up on an ATV complaint generated in the Hill City area. Additional time was spent on injured and orphaned animal calls. Baumbarger assisted the Pope County Sheriff’s office on Saturday by towing a stranded boat on Lake Minnewaska. The 46 foot boat was from a local restaurant that was giving a tour of the lake to a bachelorette party. Upon arriving at the boat, the occupants thought that the engine trouble was a ruse, and that the officers in the boat were the “entertainment” for the afternoon. All folks aboard were somewhat disappointed when they found out otherwise, but were happy to be returned safely to shore.
Wheaton – vacant.
District 4 – Wadena area
CO Paul Parthun (Lake George) worked angling, OHM and AIS details. He assisted the local sheriff’s department with an ATV accident.
CO Gary Sommers (Walker) focused on sport fishing, boating, AIS, and ORV activity. CO Sommers assisted with a TIP call on Lake Winnie. CO Sommers received calls regarding target shooting on private property, fireworks and nuisance bear. CO Sommers received a call regarding a gill net on the Leech Lake Reservation which was referred to a Tribal CO.
CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) primarily worked on boating and fishing enforcement. Nuisance bear complaints continue to come in. CO Mathy also assisted with a boat safety class and was interviewed by the Cass Lake Times about the upcoming Operation Dry Water weekend.
CO Larry Francis (Remer) worked fishing and boating activity. CO Francis addressed calls regarding a nuisance beaver that was impacting a township road and unlawful boat operation. He also investigated a report of an abandoned boat on State property. Enforcement action taken for transporting aquatic plants, fail to remove boat plug, no license in possession and fishing after revocation.
CO Duke Broughten (Longville) spent the week focusing on angling, boating, and ATV activity. Angling success has been slow across the Longville and Leech Lake area. CO Broughten responded to ATV and boating complaints. CO Broughten also gave a laws and ethics presentation to the Fork Horn 1 Camp at the Deep Portage Learning Center. Enforcement action included no angling license in possession and no navigation lights on watercraft after sunset.
CO Jeff Halverson (Staples) spent the week checking anglers, boaters, and ATV operators. CO Halverson received calls of nuisance beaver and bear.
Water Recourse Enforcement Officer Shane Siltala met with local SWCD staff to discuss wetland enforcement activities. He also continued to follow up on open public water and wetland violation cases. In one case a landowner continued to work illegally in a protected wetland after being issued a Cease and Desist Order and enforcement action was taken. Time was also spent patrolling area counties for wetland violations and checking fishermen on area lakes.
CO Sam Hunter (Park Rapids) patrolled areas of the BWCA with CO Manning. CO Hunter also checked anglers and conducted boat safety equipment checks on area lakes. ATV activity in the area remains high. CO Hunter educated watercraft owners about AIS at public water access sites.
District 5 – Eveleth area
CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls) provided assistance to local agencies during the week and monitored fishing and boating activity in the area.
CO Troy Fondie (Orr) reports another rain filled week with little outdoor activities happening. Standing water and high concentrations of flying insects were noted. Administrative reporting, office work, and computer based training continue.
CO Brad Schultz (Cook) reports continued poor weather kept outdoor activities to a minimum. A few muskie anglers were observed. A report of dumped fish carcasses in a vacant station was checked into. The biting bug population remains high.
CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked anglers, boaters, OHVs, and coordinated the collection of a road killed moose for the DNR Wildlife Division. The officer spoke to the Hibbing Kiwanis’s organization luncheon. One angler first said they had a license, but changed their answer after a short time while another angler without a license thought that as long as he didn’t keep any fish that he didn’t need a license, however he learned that he was wrong. Yet another angler said he had purchased his fishing license the day checked, but didn’t have it with him, and signed the affidavit of having a license. In reality, he purchased his license less than an hour after he was checked and is now the recipient of two citations instead of one. Enforcement action was taken on no angling license, no license in possession, angle with extra lines, exceed motorboat decibel limits, other boating violations, OHV trespass, and OHM and ATV violations.
CO Matt Frericks (Virginia) spent time investigating a public waters and wetland violation on Lake Vermilion. The landowner took the liberty to place a significant amount of fill in the lake bed and adjacent wetland to build a boat house. Further site visits with DNR hydrologists and St. Louis County planning and zoning officials are planned and a cease and desist order will likely be issued. Anglers were checked on area lakes. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license.
CO Mark Fredin (Aurora) testified at a court trail on a snowmobile while intoxicated case from last winter. He assisted Montana Game Warden’s with locating and interviewing a suspect about violation of Montana residency big game laws. Numerous turtles are being seen laying eggs along road sides, please use caution.
International Falls # 2 – vacant.
Ray – vacant.
Tower – vacant.
District 6 – Two Harbors area
CO Sean Williams (Ely) reports another week of cooler wet weather dominated the Ely area. Most anglers reported very little luck, and only a few fish were seen. Violations included operating an ATV on a county highway, and angling without a license in possession.
CO Marty Stage (Ely) worked fishermen throughout the week. One group had been fishing with too many lines and had not purchased any licenses. They were not happy to be getting tickets and felt that because they were heading into town shortly to get fishing licenses, that they should not be cited. They said they had gotten to the cabin late the night before and just hadn’t had time to get to Ely to buy them yet. Stage informed them that they had been observed fishing in the same place the night before. They had also been fishing the night before with too many lines. Their explanation for that was that it was legal to have two lines in Iowa.
CO Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) checked anglers both inside and outside the BWCA. Canoeists are reminded that, to be legal, canoes need current registration from your home state or Minnesota. Mosquitos and biting insects are still as aggressive as ever.
CO Mary Manning (Hovland) worked angling and boating activity throughout the week, as well as patrolling state parks and campgrounds. A remote BWCA patrol was conducted with other officers.
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked mainly anglers, boaters, and ATV’s throughout the week. Enforcement action included various boating, angling, and ATV violations. Time was spent on a couple ongoing investigations and a nuisance bear complaint as well.
Silver Bay – vacant.
District 7 – Grand Rapids area
CO Randy Patten (Northome) checked anglers and boaters, assisted with a youth boat and water safety class, and enforced aquatic invasive species regulations. Enforcement action taken for transporting watercraft with plugs in.
CO Jayson Hansen (Bigfork) checked anglers, worked boating enforcement, AIS, and assisted with a boat and water class in Grand Rapids. He also patrolled campgrounds and recreation areas. Permits were issued for nuisance beaver.
CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) checked anglers, monitored OHV activity, helped with a boat and water safety class in the Grand Rapids station and assisted the county with two requests for a K-9. The area anglers are having better luck as the water levels start to drop back towards normal. Enforcement action was taken for angling license issues and arrests for outstanding warrants.
CO Sarah Sindelir (Grand Rapids) helped other officers from around the area teach a boat and water safety class on Pokegama Lake this past week. The class is held annually, weather permitting, and gives an opportunity to kids to get their watercraft safety permit for legal operation. A no wake speed limit has been implemented on Pokegama Lake as of last week and will be enforced until lifted. No wake zones are from shore to 300 feet out and will be on the Mississippi River, Jay Gould Lakes and Pokegama Lake. She received a call concerning a fawn stuck inside the fenced daycare area at the IRC building over the weekend. The caller was asked to get the fawn out by Officer Sindelir and successfully did. Usually, people are instructed to not touch a fawn or pick it up because the chances of the doe coming back for it once it has human scent on it is unlikely. In this case, that wasn’t an option and everything worked out for the best. Officer Sindelir also received a report of some adult males fishing on the pier at Forest Lake who had said they didn’t have fishing licenses. She observed 3 adult males fishing for a while and made contact with them as they were leaving the pier. Enforcement action was taken for no angling licenses and fish were seized.
CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) worked ATV and angling activity with enforcement action taken for operating an ATV on a public highway, operating an ATV without registration, allowing a minor to ride on an ATV without a helmet, dumping refuse in a state campground container not generated there. A hands-on boat and water class was also attended on Pokegama Lake where roughly 40 youth received their certification to operate watercraft. An ATV class was also attended where a law talk was given to the youth.
CO Gary Lefebvre (Pengilly) worked fishermen, watercraft, ATV trails, state parks and campgrounds. He also taught a boating safety class during the week.
CO Shawn Wichmann (Hill City) monitored fishing and ATV activity throughout the week. Enforcement action was taken for fishing without a license and no license in possession.
CO John Velsvaag (NE Region ATV officer) patrolled complaint areas in Pine County and answered questions about statewide length limits and possession of pike and walleyes. CO Velsvaag also assisted with angling complaints on area lakes.
District 8 – Duluth area
CO Kipp Duncan (Duluth) spent time working fishing and boating enforcement on area lakes. ATV complaint areas were also worked during the week. Officer Duncan talked at a fishing youth day camp about regulations and answered many questions from the group. Several calls were answered and also returned during the week.
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) worked boating and ATV activity in the area. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license. More K9 training was conducted to prepare for upcoming testing with K9 Schody. A number of nuisance animal complaints were handled by phone.
CO Jeff Humphrey (Cromwell) worked angling/boating, invasive species, and OHV enforcement throughout the week. CO Humphrey patrolled in Moose Lake State Park, and the Fond du Lac and General Andrews state forests for unlawful OHV activity. CO Humphrey also continued aquatic invasive education and compliance checks. Several nuisance bear calls were received during the week. CO Humphrey assisted Montana Wardens with a license fraud investigation. Assistance was also given to State Patrol in the search for a fleeing suspect in Pine County. Boating, camping, and ATV violations were encountered.
Lake Superior Marine Unit
Sgt. Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) Used days off. He worked ATV enforcement in the Brimson area. He also worked on watercraft maintenance items.
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Unit) assisted with watercraft training for the recruits at the academy. An ATV stop found an operator was who warned for the same violation the previous week; progressive enforcement action was taken this time. Calls were returned in reference to commercial fishing, burning permits, and wildlife questions. Enforcement action taken for ATV violations
District 9 – Brainerd area
No report available at this time.
District 10 – Mille Lacs area
No report available at this time.
District 11 – St. Cloud area
CO Caleb Silgjord (Sauk Centre) spent time during the week monitoring area anglers. A good crappie bite is still going on and the temptation for one angler was just too much. The angler was caught making not one but three trips to an area hot spot. A decision the angler later regretted after CO Silgjord made contact with him. CO Silgjord took questions regarding a variety of DNR topics at Spunk Days in the City of Avon. CO Silgjord also investigated a property damage complaint at the Birch Lake State Forest Campground.
CO Brian Mies (Annandale) checked anglers during the past week. CO Mies worked on a burning complaint. CO Mies worked AIS and boating.
Conservation Officer Mike Martin (St Cloud) assisted at the academy.
CO Rhonda Friese (Long Prairie) continued to receive nuisance beaver complaints. Anglers checked reported poor catching success. Lake accesses were checked for possible AIS violations. A possible WCA issue is under investigation.
CO Joyce Kuske (Little Falls) recorded ATV Public Service Announcements at the Little Falls radio station, spoke at a youth Firearms Safety class at Rice Creek Hunting and Recreation club and participated in a community safety day at the Cushing Lutheran Church. Bear complaints continue to come in with the common complaint of “bear on the house deck.” CO Kuske took down a hummingbird feeder at one complainant’s house and assisted with stashing the garbage can of sunflower seeds. A Class 2 (side by side) ATV was stopped as it had kids with no helmets and assistance was given to the Morrison County Sherriff’s Dept. with a felon that fled on foot into a wooded area. A call was received of a homeowner near the Mississippi River who was concerned about a beaver attacking their kids. It turns out the homeowner did not live on the river and the dangerous animal in question ended up being a woodchuck not a beaver. The homeowner was reassured the woodchuck was not dangerous but given direction on how to dissuade it from digging holes in their yard.
CO Todd VanderWeyst (Paynesville) assisted Minnesota Board of Animal Health with several elk that escaped after a tree fell on the fence. The officer took a complaint of over limit of bass and found it to be unsubstantiated. The officer did find over limits on catfish and anglers using too many lines.
CO Paul Kuske (Pierz) honored the 2013 DNR Volunteer ATV Safety Instructors of the Year. While on patrol CO Kuske found a 15 yr. old operating an ATV illegally. The parents allowed her to operate the ATV without safety training, no helmet, a juvenile passenger with no helmet and expired registration. CO Kuske assisted with instruction at the CO Academy. The week’s theme was watercraft regulations and operation. Darks skies and rain clouds didn’t hide a prohibited materials fire that two individuals had on their property. The local fire dept. was called to extinguish the fire and enforcement action was taken. A wetlands investigation was initiated when a person failed to get a permit to fill a wetland area along lake front property. A game farm elk was reported loose in an area of Morrison Co. The owner has yet to be identified. In the meantime, DNR Wildlife and Board of Animal Health officials were notified of the escaped cervidae.
District 12 – Princeton area
No report available at this time.
Cambridge – vacant.
District 13 – West Metro area
CO Steve Walter (Waconia) handled a bear sighting in San Francisco Township. After interviewing a suspect, he admitted to dumping a truck load of garbage at the Swede Lake public access; enforcement action was taken. Several boat and water safety presentations were given to kids at the Jordan Elementary School. The Carver County Sheriff’s Department was assisted all weekend on Lake Waconia with the “slow, no wake” restriction on the entire lake in place.
CO Tony Salzer (Osseo) patrolled Hennepin County for angling activity. CO Salzer continued to work on a report and assisted with academy training at Camp Ripley. Salzer also met with law clerks from the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office
CO Brent Grewe (Minnetonka) spent the week checking anglers and patrolling station lakes. CO Grewe followed up with complaints. Violations included lifejacket violations and license issues.
CO Kevin Neitzke (Ft. Snelling) did boating and AIS enforcement. He checked fishermen in Hennepin and Dakota counties. CO Neitzke investigated several complaints and answered law questions for the public. He also patrolled Ft. Snelling State Park which is partially closed due to flooding.
CO Vang Lee (ELCOP) worked shore fishermen and boaters in the metro area lakes and rivers. He followed up with some AIS violations and did division online training. Enforcement action was taken for fishing without a fishing license.
CO Thephong Le (ELCOP) patrolled the Bloomington station for angling activity and got equipment ready for flood response. He returned calls on fishing regulation inquiries, accidental trapped otter and injured animals. He assisted at the Conservation Officer Academy at Camp Ripley.
Bloomington – vacant.
Mound – vacant.
Prior Lake – vacant.
District 14 – East Metro area
No report available at this time.
Eagan – vacant.
Hastings – vacant.
Maplewood – vacant.
Metro Officer – vacant.
District 15 – Marshall area
CO Ed Picht (Montevideo) attended an event for a new ATV club that was formed in Appleton. He assisted local law enforcement with weather watching and flood related issues. Boat and Water, angling, and AIS issues were addressed. A report was taken of a person using a personal watercraft to run over geese on Big Stone Lake. If you have any information on this incident, please contact CO Picht or CO Miska.
CO Gary Nordseth (Worthington) along with neighboring Conservation Officers participated in water rescues on the Rock River and Interstate 90 as a result of the wide spread flash flooding. Time was also spent checking anglers and boaters on area lakes.
CO Jim Robinson (Slayton) spent the week working anglers, invasive species, and boating safety. Murray County has been placed in a “No Wake” status on all waters by the Murray County Sheriff due to flooding. Enforcement action was taken on ATV violations.
WREO Larry Hanson (Southern Region) issued an extension in Sibley County and an extension in McLeod County for WCA violation. Follow-ups were completed on both PW and WCA cases. Officer Hanson assisted with an AIS compliance check in Brown County. Enforcement action was taken for failing to remove boat plugs.
Benson – vacant.
Madison – vacant.
Redwood Falls – vacant.
District 16 – New Ulm area
CO Jeff Denz (Willmar) conducted inspections on weed rollers and addressed permit issues. He checked anglers and boaters. Denz also spoke about laws and ethics to a youth Forkhorn camp. He monitored boats for compliance with AIS laws.
CO Jen Mueller (Hutchinson) checked anglers and boater during week. Time was also spent on AIS. She spoke at a two FAS classes and a youth ATV safety class during the week. Mueller also taught at the academy at Camp Ripley. A report of a fawn separated from its mother due to flood waters was taken.
CO Thor Nelson (New Ulm) assisted fire department and law enforcement staff with flood evacuation and traffic control. He spent the remainder of the week working fishing, ATV, AIS, state park and WMA enforcement activities. Catfish, bullheads, sunfish and bass are continuing to bite. Walleye and northern fishing activity remained slow.
CO Jason Beckmann (Windom) spent the week on sport fishing enforcement, invasive species enforcement, flood related issues, and teaching at Academy 15 at Camp Ripley. An AIS checkpoint was conducted at Lake Hanska with other area officers. Boaters still need to be reminded that the plugs on the boat and live wells need to be pulled and remain open during transport.
CO Mike Gruhlke (Jackson) worked angling, ATV, boat and water safety enforcement, and aquatic invasive species law. Gruhlke also completed a radio program discussing topics including the use of personal watercraft, boat and water safety, and other area activity.
CO Eric Schettler (Fairmont) spent a majority of the time on the water checking watercraft and angling activity. Storms dropped a lot of rain resulting in some lakes having ordinances of slow-no-wake, which slowed recreational watercraft activity. An AIS checkpoint was staffed in a neighboring station. Public waters violations were investigated. Assistance was given to local agencies for placing nautical markers on lakes in proper position after damaging storms.
Litchfield – vacant.
Willmar #1 – vacant.
District 17 – Mankato area
CO Chris Howe (St. Peter) worked angling, boating, and flooding activity. “No-wake” restrictions are in place on most area lakes, due to extremely high water levels. Airboat assistance was given to a local Sheriff’s Office related to flood response. CO Howe assisted Mankato PD officers with the “Cops ‘n Bobbers” youth fishing event, and presented the Wall of Shame display at an NWTF “JAKES Day” event at the Nicollet Conservation Club.
CO Brent Ihnen (Waseca) patrolled for anglers, boaters, and PWC operators. Officer Ihnen also spent time monitoring AIS compliance at area PWAs.
CO Luke Belgard (Faribault) worked angling, boating, AIS and ATV activity. Recent rain and high water has slowed the bite in local lakes. TIP calls, nuisance animal complaints, and questions from the public were fielded. An ATV case was worked.
CO Corey Wiebusch (Mankato) assisted with high water related needs in his area this past week. The officer also helped in enforcing the no-wake rule on lakes due to high water. Anglers and boaters were checked.
CO Chad Davis (Owatonna) worked angling, ATV, AIS, and boat & water activity during the week. Nuisance animal calls were also reported. High water was monitored for flood problems at area lakes & rivers with all the recent rain. Violations encountered regarding ATV and angling issues.
CO Steve Chihak (Spring Valley) spent the week working angling, boat and water safety, and AIS enforcement. Time was spent responding to various wildlife complaints. Assistance was provided to the Mower County Sheriff’s office. Requests from the public seeking information were returned.
Albert Lea – vacant.
District 18 – Rochester area
No report available at this time.
Rochester #2 – vacant.
Planning is ongoing for this year’s training activities, including ordering equipment and supplies and reserving training areas at Camp Ripley.
NR Pilot John Heineman (Bemidji) flew training flights for unusual altitudes and spins. Heineman also trained on helicopter emergency procedures with NR Pilot Brad Maas. A Leech Lake creel survey was also flown.
CO Pilot Bob Geving along with other DNR pilots conducted spin training activities at Crookston municipal airport. Geving also conducted a station flight for officer.
NR Pilot Luke Ettl (Grand Rapids) supported resource assessment by flying sketch mapping flights. He also transported a CO pilot in order to reposition aircraft.
NR Standby Pilot Brad Maas completed a training flight with NR Pilot Heineman, and aircraft maintenance was done as well.
CO/Pilot Chris Lofstuen (Bemidji) spent the week flying creel surveys over Leech Lake. Several were aborted due to low clouds/fog over the lake. A course on spin training was attended with other pilots and a flight was flown over Paul Bunyan State Forest in support of ground crews searching for a woman involved in an ATV accident. A local seaplane base was visited and the owner and maintenance worker were presented an aquatic invasive seaplane sign to post at the ramp. They were also given assistance with an ongoing theft problem occurring at the base.
CO Pilot Jason Jensen (Brainerd) reports a week of specialized training from U of M Crookston instructors on stall/spin flight characteristics. Jensen also looked for APM and WCA violations in certain areas of west central Minnesota. Jensen obtained a specialized piece of equipment for use in fish stocking efforts in International Falls. The item was from Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and will be used in future fish stocking operations.
Water Resource Enforcement Officers
WREO reports are now placed within district reports.
Please check the DNR WEB SITE at www.mndnr.gov for a current class listing of all DNR Enforcement Education Courses and instructor training sessions
If you missed a fall class and are over 18, check on-line for Adult Home Study or On-Line course information is also located at www.mndnr.gov.
Please check the DNR WEB SITE www.mndnr.gov for a current class listing of all DNR Enforcement Youth Snowmobile Safety Courses and instructor training sessions. Adult Snowmobile Safety Training CDs are available by calling 1-800-366-8917 or 1-888-MINNDNR.
Youth ATV Courses (12 to 15 years old) class postings for around the state are posted on the web site at www.mndnr.gov. Students are reminded that they must complete the CD portion of the course before attending the classroom portion of the course. Youth/Adult ATV Safety Training Course CDs are available by calling 1-800-366-8917 or 1-888-MINNDNR
Reminder—anyone born after December 31st, 1979 cannot purchase a license to hunt in Minnesota without first taking a DNR Safety Training Course and receiving a certificate. In addition many states have even more stringent mandatory Hunter Education requirements. Check before you go!!!
Reminder—Any resident born after December 31st, 1976, who operates a snowmobile in Minnesota, must possess a snowmobile certificate. Two options are available to complete certification. Ages 11 and older can attend the traditional youth course. Those 16 or older can take the at home CD course.
Reminder—Anyone born after July 1st, 1987, who operates an ATV on public lands and waters in Minnesota, must successfully complete the ATV Safety Training CD course. Persons under age 16 must complete the ATV CD Course and riding component before riding on public lands. Youth/Adult ATV Training CDs are available by calling 1-800-366-8917 or 1-888-MINNDNR.
SCHEDULED INSTRUCTOR TRAINING SESSIONS
If you are 18 or older and would like to become an instructor for Snowmobile Safety, ATV Safety, Firearms Safety, Trail Ambassador or one of the Advanced Hunter programs, contact your local Conservation Officer or Regional Safety Training officer. Instructor clinics are scheduled throughout the state and are listed on the DNR Website.
NE RTO Shelly Patten attended two days of meetings with the Conflict Management Team as part of the Culture of Respect initiative. The team is working to create tools and resources for employees and supervisors in dealing with conflict in the workplace. RTO Patten also attended RTO meeting at Camp Ripley. Patten assisted other RTOs with Academy training with different hunting firearms. RTO Patten traveled to Lakeshore Conservation Club to assist with a youth FAS field day. Instructors of that group are to be commended for providing a youth filed day that follows the DNR guidelines to the letter.
NW RTO Jon Paurus assisted with academy training. Much of the training focused on boat and water activities and sport fishing. A monthly meeting was attended and several calls from instructors with questions regarding safety training programs were answered.
Southern RTO Dan McBroom spent the week preparing for upcoming HEFAS instructor classes, assisted with COC training at Camp Ripley, and attended an RTO meeting at Camp Ripley. Time was also spent preparing props for upcoming field days.
West Central RTO Frank Rezac reports assisting with Academy Use of Force training and firearms familiarization at Camp Ripley. He also attended an RTO meeting at Camp Ripley, planned for instructor appreciation events, and took registration for upcoming Instructor certification training.
SW Metro RTO Alex Gutierrez attended the monthly RTO meeting. Many things were discussed including the retirement of the program manager, Capt. Mike Hammer. RTO Gutierrez also provided training to the academy COC’s regarding firearms, familiarization. The RTO worked on several projects including some for the Inver Grove Heights Darvan Acres.
Recreational Vehicle Coordinator Leland Owens last week attended the monthly Regional Training Officers meeting. He took part in a conference call of the Off-Highway Vehicle regulations booklet committee. Owens assisted with presenting the 2013 Volunteer ATV Instructors of the Year Award. Emails and calls regarding off-highway vehicles were answered and returned. Equipment maintenance was also taken care of.
CO Bob Mlynar (Aitkin) worked fishermen, boating and aquatic invasive species enforcement during the week. Charges were filed on an individual for illegal length walleyes and an over limit. Angling privileges will be revoked for one year, pending convictions. Three anglers were cited for possession of marijuana and another for boating under the influence of alcohol. The officer also assisted with 2 moose that were hit by a vehicle south of McGregor.
CO Jim Guida (Brainerd) patrolled area lakes for angling and boating violations this week. A urine test result from a BWI arrest was received from the BCA reporting a .172 alcohol concentration result which is well over the .08 limit. Numerous boating and angling violations were detected including: Insufficient PFDs, No Audible Device, No Type IV PFD, No Fire Extinguisher, No License in Possession and Angle with Extra Lines. Two individual were also addressed for consuming/displaying intoxicating liquors within a State Park/Day Use Area. An evening work detail was done with an area Officer yielding numerous contacts and violations. A few children received awards for wearing their PFDs.
CO Karl Hadrits (Crosby) reports activity this week including response to high water and nuisance beaver issues, patrol of the Crow Wing State Forest for recreational use, investigation of reported suspicious fishing activity, and patrol of area lakes for boating and fishing activity. Numerous contacts were made for boating equipment, operation, and registration violations, and no fishing licenses.
CO Mike Lee (Crosslake) checked anglers this past week who were reporting slow activity for walleye and pan fish on area lakes. Officer Lee assisted with training at Academy 15 this past week. The cadets went through Use of Force Training scenarios, dealing with many different types of situations Conservation Officers encounter. Officer Lee assisted with a Boating Safety Class held at the Big Sandy Army Corp of Engineers Camp ground. The kids received classroom instruction, and hands on operation of different type’s watercraft.
CO Tim Collette (Pequot Lakes) spent time in the Foothills SF monitoring ATV activity, checked boating activity and anglers on area lakes, and assisted with watercraft training for new recruits at Camp Ripley. Calls of nuisance beaver, timber theft and vandalism, and cutting trees and damaging campsites in the state forest were handled.
CO Patrick McGowan (Pine River) spent time at Camp Ripley training at the Conservation Officer academy. CO McGowan also patrolled the Whitefish Chain for boating and angling activity. Enforcement action was taken for numerous angling violations, no watercraft registration, illegal riding on the gunwale of a boat, insufficient PFD’s, slow no wake violations, and illegal boat exhaust.
CO Amber Peterson (McGregor) reports responding to several calls of bear roaming near homes. CO Peterson reminded residents to bring in bird feeders and be sure that garbage is not accessible to the bears. She spent time patrolling local lakes finding that the bite had slowed a bit with recent weather changes. CO Peterson also assisted at Camp Ripley with use of force training for Academy 15.
District 10 – Mille Lacs Area
CO Dan Starr (Onamia) assisted at the academy for boat and water week. Starr then worked fisherman, off road vehicles, and park violations the rest of the week. Assistance was given to neighboring officers with two road kill moose.
CO Greg Verkuilen (Garrison) worked angler enforcement where summer patterns are setting in. Some lakes have a majority of non-residents who were very content to be catching abundant bass. Regardless of which state people drove from the lack of federally required boating equipment was still a problem. Off-road vehicles were also checked where wet trails led to illegal roadway operation. Verkuilen also assisted with a hunter education class and gave a school presentation.
CO Luke Croatt (Wealthwood) investigated an illegal camp site in an area WMA. Time was also spent assisting with academy training at Camp Ripley during the week and patrolling area lakes.
WREO Robert Haberman conducted a Lake Service Provider training with area ECO staff in Baxter this week. Over 30 LSP’s attended the training. WREO Haberman also investigated a LSP working without a permit. The individual was located and enforcement action was taken. WREO Haberman also worked on AIS enforcement throughout the area.
CO Scott Fitzgerald (Malmo) reports checking fishermen out on Mille Lacs Lake during the week and weekend. Most reported a slower day time bite for walleyes but the small mouth bass were biting fairly consistently. ATV traffic was monitored in the Solana State Forest and surrounding county lands. The Officer assisted in teaching new Conservation Officers at the Academy at Camp Ripley. Assistance was given to a neighboring Officer for a Boat and Water Safety Certification class at Big Sandy Lake and lots of fishing, ATV, and boating law related questions were fielded throughout the week. Calls of nuisance animals were also fielded during the week and weekend. Invasive species laws were also monitored around the mille lacs lake area. Please remember to drain live wells, pull your drain plug and leave it out when transporting your watercraft down the road and clean off all vegetation from your watercraft before you leave the access.
CO Bret Grundmeier (Hinckley) spent more time at the Conservation Officer Academy, instructing new CO candidates, on watercraft law enforcement. A livestock depredation investigation was completed at a local farm where it was determined that a calf was likely killed by a Black Bear. Several nuisance bear complaints were also handled. Lake levels continued to be very high along with fast moving area rivers and streams that can be dangerous for boaters and shore anglers. Boaters are urged to keep their wake and waves to a minimum when operating near flooded shoreline areas.
CO Eugene Wynn (Pine City) received several complaints of nuisance bears throughout the week. Bears will be very persistent. Keep garbage, bird feeders, and even empty bird feeders out of their sight. CO Wynn also followed up on complaints of dogs chasing deer, and other baby animals. CO Wynn continued follow up on angling complaints and checked boaters and accesses throughout the Pine City area.