ELY: A couple bears had gotten food and it was apparent that some of the campers were being lax with their food storage techniques. Because it is a motor route, some BWCA users bring big coolers and think that the cooler will keep a bear out. Often the bear will tear it open, haul it away, or roll it around until it opens on its own. One group that was forced from their campsite felt that they had been doubly wronged by the bear because first it ate most of the food from the cooler, then came back and ate the rest of it. That bear has now learned that good food comes from campers. That is not likely to be unlearned.
*Reminder to leave young wildlife alone. Even if it looks abandoned, the mother is usually nearby.
District 1 – Baudette area
CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked anglers on Lake of the Woods. A detail was worked with Lt. Znajda and Major Salo at the Northwest Angle. Enforcement action was taken for an extra line and on two anglers that were found to be in possession of 14 walleyes over their limit. An over limit and illegal length walleye was also found near Long Point while working with CO Prachar.
CO Eric Benjamin (Warroad) worked boat and water safety, AIS, angling and ATV enforcement. Boaters have been doing well with draining livewells and pulling plugs prior to transporting to and from water accesses.
CO Hannah Cowden (Warroad) checked anglers and boaters as well as ATV activity in the state forest. AIS activity was also focused on. Multiple nuisance bear complaints were handled.
CO Nicholas Prachar (Baudette) had a busy week of ATV enforcement. CO Prachar worked with CO Huener on Lake of the Woods and found violations of illegal length fish, over-limits of walleye and children under 10 years old not wearing a PFD.
CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck) reports primarily working angling and boating activity on special regulation lakes and Upper Red Lake and AIS enforcement throughout the week. Time was spent investigating a variety of wildlife complaints involving nuisance bears, swan depredation and wrapping up a wolf depredation investigation. The walleye and panfish bite on the lakes has been good; however, the bite was too good for a number of anglers who learned a hard lesson and understanding of the daily possession limit. Enforcement action for the week included walleye over limits, panfish over limits, angling with extra lines, angling license violations, watercraft registration violations and AIS violations.
Baudette #2 -vacant.
Blackduck #2 – vacant.
Karlstad – vacant.
District 2 – Bemidji area
CO Tom Hutchins (Crookston) reports attending training in St. Paul. Time was also spent checking watercraft operators and anglers. AIS enforcement was worked at area public water access sites. ATV complaint sites were also checked.
CO Dan Malinowski (Fosston) monitored angling, ATVs, boating and leeching activities. He participated in a radio interview and a “Take A Kid Fishing” event. A concern was received about possible WMA trespass/use. Assistance was given to another agency including an ongoing domestic involving a firearm. Bear sightings have increased. They are very active damaging bees, bird feeders, a pickup and a screen door attempting to gain entry to an occupied home.
CO Tim Gray (Bagley) checked anglers, boaters and off-highway vehicles.
CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji) monitored angling activity on most area lakes. CO Vollbrecht worked a detail on Upper Red Lake with CO McGowan. Several over limits and slot fish were detected during the detail. CO Vollbrecht monitored ATV activity and took complaints of an individual dumping boulders into an access point on a small lake. The boulders were being placed during night time hours by an individual. Time was spent checking boats and trailers for AIS compliance at boat accesses and well-traveled roads. CO Vollbrecht is currently investigating a complaint from the local State Park of an individual camping at the park without purchasing a park pass or camping permit. The individual left early in the following morning and left their tent behind.
CO Brian Holt (Bemidji) patrolled ATV trails in the Mississippi Headwaters State Forest. Time was spent checking angling activity and AIS compliance in Itasca State Park. Canoeing and angling activity was also monitored along the Mississippi River. Officer Holt attended a Take a Kid Fishing Event in Laporte to discuss the importance of boat and water safety.
CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports contacting anglers and ATV riders, investigation of a trespass TIP and contacting commercial minnow trappers.
CO Al Peterson (Osage) worked angler and boating activity. He also followed up on on-going cases and worked ATV enforcement.
CO Gary Forsberg (Pelican Rapids) spent the week checking fishermen, working shoreline issues and aquatic plant removal. Time was also spent dealing with a dock dispute, nuisance bears and beavers. He also assisted with an ATV work party.
CO Angie Warren (Detroit Lakes) worked angling and boating activity on area lakes. Public accesses were monitored for AIS compliance. Areas were patrolled for ATV activity. CO Warren received calls in regards to nuisance bears, possible illegally taken goose, an injured loon, possible injured fawn and an orphaned loon. CO Warren reminds the public to leave baby animals alone because in most cases they are not abandoned and the mother will come back to them.
CO Bill Landmark (Moorhead) spent the week monitoring ATV activity, angling activity, boat and water safety, and AIS violations. A wolf depredation complaint was received in Norman County and trappers were called into the area. The officer also attended a firearms safety class in Twin Valley where he taught the law and ethics portion of the class. The officer fielded many calls from the public regarding young wildlife and use of public access sites. These calls included a newborn fawn picked up by a citizen and waterfowl without their mother. Please leave young animals alone as it is likely their mothers are nearby and survival without their mother is slim. Enforcement action for the week included juveniles under 18 not wearing a helmet on an ATV, angling without license in possession, insufficient number of lifejackets, no type IV throwable cushion, and parking in a prohibited area at a public access.
WREO Joe Stattelman spent the week focusing efforts on AIS enforcement, PW violations, APM violations and open cases, and WCA violations and open cases. Several CDOs were filed as well as several restoration orders. Several site visits were conducted. Time was spent working fishing and ATV activity. A neighboring officer was assisted with a nuisance bear complaint.
District 3 – Fergus Falls area
CO Troy Richards (Fergus Falls) reports angling pressure has entered into the early summer pattern with many non-residents being checked. Some of the folks are familiar faces and choose the area annually to spend their vacation time. Most enforcement time was spent checking boaters and anglers with violations addressed.
CO Tricia Plautz (Henning) worked fishing and boating enforcement throughout the week. Plautz responded to a fishing complaint of anglers in a spawning area, followed up on a complaint of over limit of fish, issued nuisance beaver permits, and received two separate bear complaints in the area. AIS enforcement was conducted at area public accesses. A complaint of night bow fishermen was handled with an angry lakeshore owner upset due to the activity.
CO Paul Nelson (Elbow Lake) checked fishermen, boaters and worked AIS enforcement. Complaints were handled regarding fish going through the Lake Christina pumps, a bear sighting, oversized docks and litter. Additional time was spent working ATV enforcement and bringing the work truck in for service.
CO Mitch Lawler (Alexandria) had a busy week patrolling the Alex area lakes for fishermen and recreational boaters. Violations ranged from fishing without a license to insufficient PFD’s onboard to a walleye overlimit case. One angler was found to be triple-tripping on a hot crappie bite. He caught his limit in the morning, at lunch and again after dinner. He had also caught and kept his limit once the day before. When all fish were counted, he had a 30 crappie overlimit in possession. A nuisance beaver trapping permit was issued as well as monitoring AIS activity.
CO Tony Anderson (Morris) focused enforcement efforts on anglers, boating safety and AIS law compliance. COs Anderson and Baumbarger conducted a work crew for Boat and Water Safety law compliance on Lake Minnewaska. Anderson worked with the USFWS on a complaint about persons placing tile across a WPA without first obtaining a permit to do so. Several COs were given assistance with computer RMS (record management system) issues and minnow transportation permits were issued. Calls from the public were handled regarding take-a-kid fishing weekend and fawn deer.
CO Daniel Baumbarger (Glenwood) reports enforcement efforts for the week included checking fishermen, boaters, ATV operators, and monitoring AIS compliance. Two calls were received from watercraft inspectors about zebra mussels attached to boats. Boaters are reminded to check every nook and cranny for these small mussels, and pay close attention to parts of boats that are constantly submerged. Additional time was spent speaking at a youth safety event at Lake Minnewaska, and teaching a youth ATV safety class in Glenwood.
Wheaton – vacant.
District 4 – Wadena area
CO Paul Parthun (Lake George) addressed nuisance animal complaints, assisted other officers with violations and checked area trout lakes. Enforcement action was taken for angling violations, boat and water violations and ATV violations.
CO Sam Hunter (Park Rapids) assisted the city and state patrol in searching for a fleeing suspect. Officer Hunter took possession of two fawns that were taken into captivity. A reminder that fawns found in the wild are rarely abandoned. Please leave the fawns where you found them so their mothers will come back and get them.
CO Greg Oldakowski (Wadena) checked anglers and boaters, as well as some ATV and OHM activity. Several calls were received regarding baby animals.
CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) continued to check anglers, boaters, AIS, and ATVs. Calls of persons catching illegal size walleyes, persons shooting woodpeckers, injured bears, nuisance beavers, littering, and AIS questions were handled. Fish catching continued to be good in the area. Enforcement action was taken for over limit of northern pike, litter, boating violations and angling violations.
CO Duke Broughten (Longville) spent the week focusing on angling, ATV, and boating activity. Angling success continued to be poor. CO Broughten investigated a TIP call and a public waters violation. CO Broughten also completed commercial inspections.
CO Colleen Adam (ATV REC) had a busy week responding to injured or “abandoned” animal calls. Just because you see a fawn does not mean it is abandon. If you see a road kill doe that would be about the only situation in which human intervention is a rescue, otherwise you are likely taking babies away from their mother and subjecting the deer to a compromised life. Officer Adam patrolled area trails and found ATVs using a snowmobile only trail and a pickup truck that was stuck in the middle of the same trail system. She assisted the county on medical and an intoxicated pedestrian.
Remer – vacant.
District 5 – Eveleth area
CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls) reports assisting Int’l Falls PD and Koochiching County Sheriff’s Dept. in executing a search warrant in search of a missing person. Fishing, boat safety, and invasive species enforcement on Rainy Lake and Lake Kabetogama continue to be officers main work activities. Enforcement action for week consisted of no angling license in possession, illegal length walleye, and no ATV safety certificate.
CO Jim Van Asch (International Falls) reports monitoring angling and boating activities in the Kabetogama Lake area. The fish are not exactly jumping in the boat though; anglers are having moderate success both in the early morning and evening hours. CO Van Asch also spent time attending training in St. Paul, completing a wolf depredation investigation, and handling nuisance animal complaints. Enforcement action was taken for no angling license in possession, possession of an illegal length walleye, failure to display valid watercraft registration, and a parent knowingly allows a minor to violate game or fish laws.
CO Troy Fondie (Orr) monitored angling activities, checked public access sites, monitored forest roads and monitored boating activities. Computer data entry is ongoing. Equipment supplies were tended to. Rains have diminished outdoor activities.
CO Marc Hopkins (Tower) spent the week working area lakes. Numerous contacts were made and enforcement action was taken on no license in possession, no PFD, no registration, and failure to drain boat or remove plug. The Officer also assisted area fisheries with their electro-fishing and survey of bass on Eagles Nest. ATV enforcement was taken on allowing illegal operation by a juvenile and operating on a roadway. A couple more bear complaints were taken and landowners were advised to remove anything that attracts bears like, bird feed, pet food, and garbage.
CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked anglers, boaters, Kabetogama Lake, OHMs, and dealt with higher than average number of nuisance animal complaints regarding beaver, bears, abandoned woodchucks, an abandoned fawn, and a coyote trying to kill dogs. As usual, the fawn was not abandoned and only hiding as the doe had instructed. Enforcement action was taken on no PFDs, no angling license in possession, unregistered OHM, and operate OHM on a public highway.
CO Matt Frericks (Virginia) spent time checking anglers on area lakes and rivers. For the second week in a row CO Frericks checked an angler who had purchased a combination angling license and wasn’t legally married. The combination angling licenses are reserved for married couples. If you are engaged or living together you are not eligible for the combination angling license. In both instances, the anglers were cited and their licenses were seized and invalidated. ATV activity remains high. Enforcement action was taken for operating an ATV with too many passengers.
CO Mark Fredin (Aurora) worked boating and fishing activity throughout the week. Violations of failure to transfer boat registration, expired boat registration, and no angling license were found. A number of anglers were out in pursuit of muskie on Vermilion and most reported little success. There were some walleye and crappie being caught on area lakes, but fishing has slowed. Violations of OHM and ATV’s operating within road way were also addressed.
Ray – vacant.
District 6 – Two Harbors area
CO Sean Williams (Ely) assisted the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and an APHIS wildlife biologist with several wildlife complaints inside the town of Ely. Officer Williams also patrolled motor portions of the BWCA with Officer Marty Stage. Angling activity was slower than what was expected and fishing success was slow. Violations included unregistered canoe, no floatation device in a watercraft and, angle without a license in possession.
CO Marty Stage (Ely) dealt with bear issues in the Pipestone BWCAW area. A couple bears had gotten food and it was apparent that some of the campers were being lax with their food storage techniques. Because it is a motor route, some BWCA users bring big coolers and think that the cooler will keep a bear out. Often the bear will tear it open, haul it away, or roll it around until it opens on its own. One group that was forced from their campsite felt that they had been doubly wronged by the bear because first it ate most of the food from the cooler, then came back and ate the rest of it. That bear has now learned that good food comes from campers. That is not likely to be unlearned.
CO Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) did a coordinated, remote, patrol along the Canadian border with the Border Patrol and COs from the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. Angling activity has been way down over the opening weeks of the fishing season. Too many people were encountered without fishing licenses in possession. Some were reminded that they need a pre-trip list that includes life jackets, or better yet, leave your life jackets stored in the boat. People who like to feed the birds are calling in complaints about bears wrecking their bird feeders. Bears can’t tell if the sunflower seeds are left for them or the birds.
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked on a wetlands case, handled wolf complaints, assisted with the Babbitt ATV safety class, and spent time acquiring, setting up, and training on new equipment. Enforcement action included operating OHM on highway, no driver’s license, expired OHM registration, no navigation lights after sunset, and no license in possession.
CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Tofte) worked boat and water safety and checked angling activity on inland lakes and trout streams. Several calls were taken regarding nuisance bears. People are reminded to bring in their trash and remove bird feeders. Complaints on ATV and OHM activity on illegal trails are starting to come in as the weather gets more enjoyable. Enforcement action was taken for allow unlawful operation on an ATV, angling and boating violations.
District 7 – Grand Rapids area
CO Randy Patten (Northome) checked anglers and boaters, patrolled for illegal ATV activity, enforced aquatic invasive species laws, and handled wildlife complaints dealing with bears; beavers; and eagles. Enforcement action taken for transporting aquatic vegetation and possess illegal length walleyes.
CO Jayson Hansen (Bigfork) checked anglers, boating activity, and answered various wildlife calls. He patrolled area lakes and assisted other law enforcement agencies on calls. He also worked on various tasks for upcoming trapping, firearms, and use of force training. Violations included traffic and fail to drain water related equipment.
CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) worked angling activity the past week. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license in possession, operating an unregistered watercraft, operating a watercraft without enough PFDs or throwable, operating an type 1 ATV on a public highway and angling with a game fish.
CO Gary Lefebvre (Pengilly) worked fishermen, watercraft, AIS, state parks and campgrounds. He also a trespass and several boating complaints during the week.
CO Shawn Wichmann (Hill City) spent the week working fishing and ATV activity. Wichmann investigated a call about a possible fishing over limit. After investigating, a subject was found to be over his limit of panfish and other illegal small game animals.
CO John Velsvaag (NE Region ATV Officer) worked in several complaint areas this past week; he checked ATV and OHM activity. CO Velsvaag also assisted with a fishing complaint. He took a call about a fox with mange.
District 8 – Duluth area
CO Andy Schmidt (Brookston) worked area lakes and rivers during the week for anglers and boaters. ATV complaint areas and trail heads were worked. Follow up on a trespassing complaint was completed. Bear complaints continue and the most common complaint revolves around garbage containers and bird feeders. Reports of abandoned fawns were handled and reporting parties were advised to leave the fawns alone.
CO Jeff Humphrey (Cromwell) worked angling, boating, AIS, and OHV enforcement throughout the week. CO Humphrey continues to receive calls and complaints on nuisance and injured/orphaned wildlife to include wolf, bear, beaver, and loon. CO Humphrey investigated and confirmed another wolf livestock depredation complaint. A wetland/waters complaint was received and is under investigation.
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) worked on wetland violations and fishing activity in the area. More time was spent working Invasive species enforcement in the area as well. Enforcement action was taken for failing to remove boat plug, angle without license in possession, and transporting fish without patch of skin. K9 training continues with K9 Schody. Time was spent training with other dogs in the metro this past week. Complaints of bears tearing down bird feeders are coming in. People are reminded to take you bird feeders down and remove other food sources from around the house if you don’t want bears coming to visit. One beaver complaint was received where beaver are flooding a field and destroying trees.
CO Kipp Duncan (Duluth) continued to work fishing and boating enforcement on area lakes. Many shore fishing anglers were also checked throughout the week. ATV and OHM enforcement was worked in past complaint areas. Officer Duncan continues to field calls of so-called problem bears and the problem seems to always go away when the caller removes the food source that is attracting the bear.
CO Randy Hanzal Duluth (Duluth) checked anglers, boater and ATV users during the week. Both walleyes and panfish have been plentiful throughout the station. Many watercraft users are still transporting there watercraft with the drain plugs in place. It’s been surprising to the officer how much water is accidentally being transported in the hulls of people’s boats. This water can contain a variety of invasive species. Please check those drain plug, remove any water and dry. You don’t want to be the one to ruin your favorite fishing lake.
Water Resource Enforcement Officer Mike Scott (NE MN) attended a DNR AIS meeting with counties from the Arrowhead region of Minnesota. Officer Scott followed up on several AIS violations where people were found to be transporting zebra mussels to public accesses. Enforcement action was taken for transporting AIS. Officer Scott checked anglers on area lakes and rivers. He assisted a family with landing and releasing a 26 inch sturgeon on the St. Louis River. Enforcement action was taken for no fishing license in possession, and fishing without a license.
Lake Superior Marine Unit
Sgt. Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers along the St. Louis River and Lake Superior. Fielded several bear complaints in the Duluth city limits. He advised homeowners to take down (bird) wildlife feeders. Bring in garbage cans until garbage night. Responded to a cougar sighting in the woodland neighborhood, the cougar was a grey fox. Several questions regarding the Wisc./Minn. boundary waters of the St. Louis River and Duluth/Superior harbor. Enforcement action pending on burning prohibitive materials in Lakewood Twp.
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers and boaters on Superior. A new-hire was taken as a ride along. Follow up on ATV and ORV enforcement was completed. Boaters were checked for AIS compliance with low violation rates found. E Enforcement action was taken for ATV and OHM violations.
District 9 – Brainerd area
CO Karl Hadrits (Crosby) reports checking fishing and boating activity, responding to miscellaneous wildlife issues, assisting the Cuyuna Range Elementary school firearms safety program with their range / field day, patrolling in the Cuyuna Country State Recreational Area, and investigating complaints of damage to state property and suspicious fishing. Enforcement contacts were made for fishing license and boating equipment violations.
CO Mike Lee (Crosslake) checked anglers this past week with so-so success being reported by anglers. Officer Lee assisted with a district AIS checkpoint held in the Crosslake Area, with compliance of AIS regulations being very good. While working the checkpoint numerous residents of the area stopped by to thank officers for their continued work in AIS regulations. Officer Lee assisted with a safety program held at Camp Ripley this past week. Military personnel and their family members were able meet with and ask questions of different groups pertaining to outdoor summer activities. Officer Lee answered questions regarding boat and water safety along with AIS Regulations, and other recreational activities.
CO Tim Collette (Pequot Lakes) checked anglers, boaters, and monitored aquatic invasive species activity at boat landings. Beaver permits were issued for flooding problems, and a call was handled of someone picking up four swan chicks because they didn’t see the mother anywhere around. Enforcement activity included juvenile ATV riders without helmets, allowing illegal juvenile ATV operation, angling with extra lines, angling without valid licenses, no life jackets on watercraft, and expired boat registrations.
CO Patrick McGowan (Pine River) patrolled Cass and Crow Wing County lakes for boating activity. CO McGowan also worked Upper Red Lake, and attended the Whitefish Chain lake association meeting. Enforcement action was taken for over limit of walleyes, illegal length walleyes, angle with extra lines, and numerous boating violations.
CO Randy Posner (Brainerd) reports that he worked on fishing enforcement this past week. The anglers are out and the walleye bit has slowed the water temps are still cold. The pan fish have been cooperative. Violations he observed were transport live fish and no license. He worked on aquatic invasive species prevention on Gull Lake. Plugs in boats, water in live wells and aquatic vegetation on trailers were found. He checked Lake Service Providers hauling lifts and watercraft with zebra mussels attached. The mussels found where determined to be dead and had attached to the equipment last year. Enforcement action was taken. He worked on a report of loud music from a camper at Rock Lake. The music was found and problem was corrected. He talked with an angler who was on the lake and had a near miss in the early morning fog. His electronics that he had relied on for location had failed. Boaters are reminded to be prepared for adverse weather conditions and to be aware of how quickly the weather can change.
CO Bob Mlynar (Aitkin) worked angling, watercraft and AIS enforcement during the week. An individual was charged with illegal possession of a fawn and the officer also assisted with a district AIS check station near Crosslake.
CO Amber Peterson (McGregor) checked anglers on area lakes and patrolled ATV activity. She also followed up on a shoreline violation.
District 10 – Mille Lacs area
CO Greg Verkuilen (Garrison) worked lake activity which included increases of swimmers, non-resident anglers, personal watercraft activity, and bow fishing. With cabins getting opened up, calls were taken regarding nuisance wildlife like beavers cutting trees and squirrel infestations. ATV traffic is also picking up and generating complaints like wetland destruction and highway operation.
CO Chris Tetrault (Isle) fielded several phone calls regarding nuisance animals. The officer picked up a lost dog and transported to a local animal shelter until the owners are identified. Anglers on area lakes were checked with mixed success. ATV traffic was high and so was compliance.
CO Scott Fitzgerald (Malmo) reports checking fishermen out on Mille Lacs Lake during the week and weekend. Patrol was done in the Solana State Forest for ATV traffic and also for forestry violations. The Officer investigated a possible wetlands violation along with the local Zoning and SWCD Office. The Officer assisted a neighboring Officer with an ATV Safety Class were the students were given the law and ethics portion of the class. A big thanks to the White Pine Riders for hosting the training. A call of a wolf taking a cow was investigated. The kill was confirmed as a wolf kill and the APHIS federal trappers were already trapping on site from a previous depredation. Off-highway motorcycle activity was monitored throughout the station and lots of fishing, ATV, boating, AIS and wolf related law questions were fielded throughout the week and weekend. Enforcement action for the week included various OHM, fishing and boating related law violations.
CO Dan Starr (Onamia) worked on a public waters/removal of aquatic vegetation situation where the landowner was dragging a cutting device for weeds behind his motorboat. The area contained mostly wild rice. An early muskie case was also worked on, with the assistance of a Mille Lacs Band Conservation Officer. Enforcement action was taken for an oversized walleye. Baby critters of various species are showing up all over, which if seen, the public should simply leave them alone. Large flocks of non-breeding geese were also observed along with numerous sandhill cranes. Multiple strutting tom turkeys, that made it through season, were also observed. Turned in furbearing animals were also prepped for a skinning demonstration at a local 4H Club. Numerous bear concerns continue to be heard.
CO Bret Grundmeier (Hinckley) worked multiple ATV complaint areas throughout the week. Violations found included everything from unregistered machines to tearing up river and lake beds to illegal operation on highways by juveniles. One ATV loaded down with several 10- to 13-year-olds was found driving down a busy highway and pulling a boat. The youngsters and their equipment were escorted home and the parents were educated about ATV laws and safety.
CO Eugene Wynn (Pine City) spent the week following up on ATV complaints and checking anglers. He spent time monitoring accesses around Pine City for AIS violations and education. He answered numerous questions about nuisance animals, and issued a nuisance beaver permit.
CO Luke Croatt (Wealthwood) patrolled area lakes and Mille Lacs Lake. Some nice sunfish and crappies were seen during the week on smaller lakes. Fishermen on Mille Lacs were checked with most reporting catching fish but keepers were down. A wolf depredation complaint was investigated with neighboring officer for a second time on the same farm. This time a cow was killed but the calf managed to escape. Time was also spent patrolling for invasive species violations and monitoring state forest.
WREO Rob Haberman assisted D9 officers with a AIS check station near the Cross Lake area. WREO Haberman also presented about Aquatic Invasive Species at Camp Ripley for troops. WREO Haberman also helped conduct level 1 inspector training in Grand Rapids for Itasca County inspectors.
District 11 – St. Cloud area
CO Caleb Silgjord (Sauk Centre) spent time during the week monitoring angling activity. A presentation was given to the Little Birch Lake Association at their annual meeting. CO Silgjord also stopped in at the Freeport Family Fishing Contest. The kids and adults in attendance all seemed to be enjoying themselves; some even had a few laughs, in good taste, at CO Silgjord’s expense. A TIP call regarding taking geese out of season was investigated and found to be unsubstantiated. Area accesses were also monitored for AIS violations.
CO Rhonda Friese (Long Prairie) handled nuisance bear complaints. Anglers and boaters were checked. OHV activity was monitored. Equipment maintenance was done.
CO Joyce Kuske (Little Falls) received numerous calls of orphaned raccoons and fawns. Most fawns are not orphaned but they are left alone sometimes by the doe. The doe is nearby and will be coming back so do not pick up the fawns. A call of a possible poaching complaint was investigated as a person’s dog was bringing home fresh deer parts. It was found that the neighbors target shoot and the fresh deer was a fawn that had unfortunately gotten caught in a farm mower when the field was cut.
CO Todd VanderWeyst (Paynesville) handled calls concerning dock placement and did an inspection of two docks suspected of having zebra mussels attached. The officer worked on end of the month paper work and handled an injured eagle call in a neighboring officer’s station. TIP calls on possible fish over limits continues to be monitored.
CO Chad Thesing (Albany) worked anglers, boaters and AIS enforcement over the week. TIP calls of over limit fish were handled as well as injured animal calls. Enforcement action for the week included transport weeds on boat trailer, transport boat with plug in, expired registration, extra line and no license in possession.
CO Paul Kuske (Pierz) handled a depredation complaint which involved a wolf killing a calf. USDA wildlife services notified and a compensation claim processed. Checked area lakes for fishing and boating activity where enforcement action was taken for several minor violations. CO Kuske encountered two ATV’ers operating illegally on a public highway; each had previous violations, for one of the individuals this was the fourth time he was found in violation of the ATV laws within the past year.
CO Brian Mies (Annandale) last week checked anglers. CO Mies also gave a law talk at an ATV class in Southaven. CO Mies also did commercial game farm checks along with working on tip calls.
St. Cloud – vacant.
District 12 – Princeton area
CO Mitch Sladek (Big Lake) worked fishermen and took enforcement action on a number of violations. He took a number of nuisance animal complaints. He followed up on a litter violation charges pending. He responded to a stranded boater on Mitchell Lake.
CO Todd Langevin (Center City) reports working on an Aquatic Invasive Species case were the vegetation found on a trailer had to be identified. CO Langevin brought the sample to the University of Minnesota, St. Paul campus. There, an expert in aquatic vegetation examined the sample. The sample was found to contain a form of algae. CO Langevin also checked anglers and boaters in the area. Violations included no license in possession, no PFD and illegal length fish.
CO Brandon McGaw (Mora) checked many anglers during the week. Shore fishing has slowed in success some but many have been enjoying the great weather. Complaints involving ATV and off road motorcycles have been taken and problem areas have been patrolled and violations addressed. Several calls have been taken reference sick raccoons and fox. Enforcement action was taken on operate ATV on highway and operate OHM on highway
CO Angela Londgren (Cambridge) checked anglers, boaters, ATVs, and for invasive species at local lakes and rivers. Numerous calls of injured, nuisance, and baby animals were handled, as well as public water violations being investigated. Enforcement action was taken on angling with extra lines, no angling license, no fire extinguisher and PFD violations.
Princeton – vacant.
District 13 – West Metro area
CO Brent Grewe (Osseo) spent the week checking boaters and anglers. CO Grewe also followed up with TIP complaints and helped out with a “Cops and Kids” fishing event in Brooklyn Park. Violations included no fishing license, expired boat registration and boat safety equipment issues.
CO Traci Hanson (Minnetonka) spent the week checking fishermen and working AIS enforcement. Hanson assisted with the Brooklyn Park Cops and Kids fishing event where many young anglers had the opportunity to catch fish and visit with officers and firefighters. The event was a great success!
CO Thephong Le (ELCOP) worked angling, boating and AIS activities in district vicinity with primary focus in the two temporarily assigned Bloomington and Fort Snelling State Park stations. He returned calls for an aggressive deer and a raccoon that took refuge in a container in Eden Prairie. He also responded to a TIP where action is pending. He assisted Fort Snelling State Park during a Fans Race, a non-stop 24 hours charity race. He also completed department training.
Bloomington – vacant.
Mound – vacant.
District 14 – East Metro area
CO Joe Kulhanek (Hastings) spent the week checking anglers, AIS compliance and ORV use throughout the area. He worked a detail at the new Stillwater bridge site, and responded to a TIP complaint of taking fox out of season. Enforcement action for the week included trespass, failure to have a PFD on board for each person, and no license in possession.
CO Vuthy Pril (ELCOP) spent the week checking anglers on area lakes and worked boating enforcement on the Mississippi and St. Croix rivers. He responded to a couple of TIP complaints of possible over the limit of fish and handled miscellaneous animal calls during the week. CO Pril also attended a district meeting where he received training on “Culture of Respect” in Saint Paul. Violations included fishing without a fishing license, fishing with extra lines, no fishing license in possession, insufficient life jackets in boats and aquatic invasive species violations.
WREO Adam Block (Metro) spent the week working angling and AIS activity. WREO Block completed an interview regarding boating safety and AIS with a Metro media outlet. WREO Block also worked the Stillwater bridge detail on the St. Croix River and attended department training.
CO Scott Arntzen (Forest Lake) reports attending a district meeting and setting up the Wall of Shame trailer for the Bald Eagle Sports Club Open House. CO Arntzen continued checking anglers, boaters and investigated TIP calls regarding over limits of fish. He also handled a nuisance animal call and gave testimony in court on a big game violation.
CO Brad Johnson (Maplewood) reports that he investigated a complaint of illegal possession of baby Raccoons in St. Paul. He was the guest speaker at the Roseville Kiwanis Club. CO Johnson responded to a call of two bald eagles fighting in a tree in West St. Paul. He was assisted by staff from The Raptor Center, and West St. Paul PD and FD. CO Johnson attended departmental training at the regional office.
CO Lisa Kruse (White Bear Lake) worked boating and fishing enforcement during the week and on the muskie opener. She talked to 6th graders at Stonebridge Elementary School about CO duties, handled a hydro jet device complaint, worked ATV enforcement in Anoka County and handled TIP calls. CO Kruse attended a boat and water meeting with other local agencies, worked AIS enforcement and attended training.
CO Tony Salzer (Ham Lake) patrolled Anoka County for angling activity. CO Salzer attended court in Anoka County for a shining case from last year. Officer Salzer also patrolled area lakes for boating and fishing activity.
Eagan – vacant.
Metro Officer – vacant.
District 15 – Marshall area
CO Craig Miska (Ortonville) checked AIS, angling, boating, and OHV activity during the week. This officer was a guest speaker on KFAN Outdoors in the Twin Cities and Minn-Dak Outdoors in Ortonville. Both radio shows focused on the duties of a CO. An ATV rider was found to be in violation at the Appleton OHV Park and told to park the ATV for the day. An hour later, this officer had contact with the same rider three miles from the OHV Park and was found to be violating the same rules. Enforcement action was again taken.
CO Matt Loftness (Marshall) reported fishing, boating, ATV, and invasive species continue to be the main enforcement focuses. Fishing success for walleye slowed during the week but some nice fish are still being caught. Fishermen are reminded it is illegal to use outboard motors on West Twin Lake in southwest Lyon County. Only trolling motors are permitted.
CO Doug Lage (Marshall) conducted his weekly radio show on KLOH radio. A Firearms Safety Class was taught in Hendricks and Ivanhoe along with a ATV Safety Class in Clarkfield. The volunteer instructors did a great job and congratulations to the youth. .
CO Jim Robinson (Slayton) spent the week checking anglers and working ATVs. Lake Yankton seems to be producing good walleye numbers. Training on a new tablet was received. Enforcement action was taken for youthful operation of ATV, no helmet, and too many ATV passengers.
WREO Larry Hanson (Southern Region) assisted with a check station in Cross Lake and worked boating safety and AIS enforcement in area counties. Fishermen were also checked with some having good luck on area lakes. A WREO meeting was also attended.
CO Ed Picht (Montevideo) reports two black bears were destroyed by a bee keeper after breaking into his bee boxes. Minnesota statutes allow the taking of bear if doing damage. A public waters case was investigated and forwarded to the area hydrologist. Fishermen continue to find fish on Lac qui Parle and the Minnesota River. Violations include angling with extra lines and angling without a license.
Benson – vacant.
Madison – vacant.
Redwood Falls – vacant.
Worthington – vacant.
District 16 – New Ulm area
CO Jen Mueller (Hutchinson) continued to check anglers and boaters during the week. She received calls on “abandoned” fawns. She assisted McLeod County with a shots fired call by Swan Lake. CO Mueller spoke at a FAS class in St. George.
CO Thor Nelson (New Ulm) gave a presentation for a local Rotary Club. He also answered questions about wildlife and invasive species concerns and did a site inspection on possible public waters violations and a litter complaint. CO Nelson spent the remainder of the week working angling, off highway motorcycle and ATV activities.
CO Nicholas Klehr (Litchfield) took calls about a black bear moving through the area during the week. People were told to keep their garbage inside and take in bird feeders so they are not an easy food source for the bear. Anglers were checked with some having more luck with the warm weather. Carp shooters were reminded that they need to have an angling license. CO Klehr also got to spend time down in Stillwater helping out with the bridge detail.
CO Brett Oberg (Hutchinson) reports some anglers are having success with crappies in the area. Watercraft enforcement was worked in the area with a few document PWC violations. CO Oberg also worked on OHM enforcement dealt with issues related to operation and equipment violations. Use of force work was also completed.
CO Jeff Denz (Willmar) checked anglers, boaters and monitored public accesses for compliance with AIS laws. He took calls about injured and nuisance wildlife. He checked commercial activity.
Willmar #1 – vacant.
Windom – vacant.
District 17 – Mankato area
CO Corey Wiebusch (Mankato) checked areas for turtle trapping activity. Angling and boating activity were worked on the Minnesota River. The officer also worked area lake accesses for AIS violations.
CO Brent Ihnen (Waseca) patrolled for fishing and boating activity. Additional time was spent checking ATV and OHM operators. Officer Ihnen also worked at area PWAs checking for AIS compliance and investigated litter/dumping complaints.
CO Luke Belgard (Faribault) worked angling, AIS, and recreational vehicle enforcement. Calls regarding nuisance wildlife were addressed. Time was spent monitoring wildlife management areas and public water access sites.
CO Chad Davis (Owatonna) checked anglers on area lakes and rivers. AIS and boating activity were also monitored. County and township roads were patrolled for ATV activity. A TIP call was received regarding illegal fishing activity.
CO Chris Howe (St. Peter) patrolled area lakes and rivers. Some fish are being taken, in spite of weather fluctuations. An interview was done with KEYC-TV regarding “Take a Kid Fishing Weekend.” A parking concern at a state trail access was also investigated.
WREO Julie Siems followed up on WCA and Public Waters violations including attending a TEP meeting. A contractor was contacted for failing to file the Wetlands Contractor Form. Boaters and Anglers were also checked.
Albert Lea – vacant.
Mankato #1 – vacant.
District 18 – Rochester area
CO Tom Hemker (Winona) reports better fishing on the river as the water level dropped. He received several baby and nuisance animal calls including juveniles killing baby birds. Hemker also closed a deer case from last fall.
CO Phil George (Rochester) checked anglers and boaters along with assisting the county sheriff’s office with boat operation education.
CO Tyler Quandt (Red Wing) reports spending most of the week checking angling activity in the area. Fishing success remains slow in the area and the water is still high. Some fishing violations were detected.
CO Joel Heyn (Plainview) worked mainly anglers and boaters during the week. Fishing success was mixed, but slower overall. Heyn also checked on other complaints and potential waters violations.
CO Mitch Boyum (Rushford) reports receiving multiple fawn calls throughout the week along with other new born animal calls. CO Boyum worked on Lake Zumbro with Olmsted County Sheriff’s Department on boat and water issues. Time was also spent monitoring ATV areas.
CO Kevin Prodzinski (Wabasha) reports working another busy week on the big river as well as area trout streams. Fishing has been better on Lake Pepin with numerous walleye and sauger being caught but most are running a little small. Some limits and over limits were checked as well as some undersize fish were found. More nuisance and baby animal calls were also taken and another investigation was completed.
Rochester #2 – vacant.
Planning is ongoing for this year’s training activities, including ordering equipment and supplies and reserving training areas at Camp Ripley.
CO Pilot Jason Jensen (Brainerd) reports giving various training flights throughout the week; both fixed wing and seaplane sessions were given to other DNR pilots. Two boating enforcement flights were flown in vacant areas in the Remer and Princeton areas. Multiple contacts were made and numerous pictures were taken of the plane as inspections were finished. One possible WCA violation was documented and forwarded to the local officer.
CO Pilot Chris Lofstuen (Bemidji) reports flying several creel survey flights over Lake Vermilion as well as an amphibian training flight with CO/Pilot Jensen. Time was also spent on aircraft maintenance.
NR Pilot John Heineman (Bemidji) gave training to a CO Pilot on the Lake Vermilion creel survey and acted as a safety pilot for some instrument work. Pilot Heineman also received float training.
NR Pilot Brad Maas (Brainerd) continued with his airplane training, and continued helicopter training with one of the pilots. Other administrative tasks were also completed.
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.