Wisconsin Outdoor News Cuffs and Collars — April 7, 2017

District 6 — Eau Claire area

Warden Hanna took enforcement actions against two men in February for shooting a deer with bird shot during the late antlerless deer season and failing to immediately validate the carcass tag. The men were hunting with a third individual whose hunting, fishing, and trapping privileges were revoked as a result of previous illegal harvest activities.

Warden Hanna met with a man in February who brought him a bobcat for CITES inspection. Upon contact, it was discovered that the bobcat was harvested on private land without consent, the tag was not validated, and the bobcat was not registered.  Enforcement action was taken.

Wardens Peter Carlson and Bryan Harrenstein, of Medford, investigated a complaint of an individual who shot three bucks during the 2016 season. It was found that the man did not register his archery buck, shot his gun buck over illegal bait in Clark County, and borrowed a tag for his late-season buck. The individual also shot a doe that he did not register during the gun deer season. Enforcement action was taken.

Wardens John Schreiber, of Cornell, and Kevin Christorf, of Chippewa Falls, contacted an individual who was found to be camping illegally in the state wildlife area. The wardens determined that the individual cut timber illegally, littered and shot a deer during the gun deer season, but failed to tag or register the deer. Enforcement action was taken.

Warden Schreiber worked patrol and public safety enforcement during a busy local ice fishing tournament with the Chippewa County Sheriff’s Department. Multiple individuals were found to be operating ATVs and UTVs without registration on the lake, on roadways illegally, allowing illegal juvenile operation on roadways, and allowing juveniles to ride without helmets. Enforcement actions were taken.

Warden Schreiber located a filleted out muskellunge on the ice of Lake Holcombe in front of a cabin with foot tracks leading to the cabin. Contact was later made with the cabin owner, who was found to have caught and kept the muskie while ice fishing and filleted the fish to eat it, and left the carcass on the shore. Enforcement action was taken.

Wardens Schreiber and Christorf investigated a hunter who was found to have killed multiple deer and failed to tag or register the deer, and the hunter was found to be hunting during a period of revocation on multiple occasions. The hunter was arrested and transported to Chippewa County jail.

Warden Christorf observed an individual ice fishing on a public pond in Lake Hallie. Christorf observed the individual smoking what appeared to be marijuana. Christorf contacted the individual. The individual admitted to smoking marijuana and provided Christorf with a bag of marijuana. Christorf contacted Lake Hallie Police Department. Enforcement action was taken.

Wardens Christorf and Peter Carlson, of Greenwood, did a taxidermist inspection in February. The inspection showed that the taxidermist did not have a state license, he possessed an illegal bobcat, and had also harvested a buck during the archery season and did not register it. Enforcement action was taken.

Warden Christorf received a complaint that there was a snowmobile stuck on the closed snowmobile trail near Lake Hallie. Using the registration from the snowmobile, Christorf was able to track down the owners of the sled. Upon contact with the driver they admitted to operating on the closed snowmobile trails. Enforcement action was taken.

Warden Scott Thiede, of Eau Claire, followed boot imprints in the snow to locate two ice anglers on a remote quarry pond in the Lower Chippewa River State Natural Area. One of the individuals was fishing without a license. Enforcement action was taken.

Warden Ken Thomson, of Fall Creek, investigated a complaint of a snowmobiler operating off trail and chasing deer, as witnessed by another snowmobiler. Thomson found evidence where the snowmobile was operated on private property without consent of the owner. It appeared that the snowmobiler was chasing deer. The suspect was located and enforcement action taken.

Warden Jim Cleven, of Colfax, came upon a fishermen fishing alone with eight tip-ups. The fishermen also did not have a fishing license. Enforcement action was taken.

District 7 — Wisconsin Rapids area

(See report in last issue).

District 8 — La Crosse area

Warden Brad Peterson, of Pierce County, contacted a person sitting in his truck who stated he was just listening to the dogs run a coyote, but he was not hunting even though he had three long guns in the front seat. A consent check of the guns found one of them to be loaded. It also was confirmed the individual did not have a small game license. Enforcement action was taken.

Warden Dale Hochhausen, of Onalaska, attended a sentencing hearing in February regarding a panfish overbagging case. In November 2015 the suspect had been arrested for overbagging violations and 2,572 panfish were seized from the suspect’s residence. Fines for the violations totaled close to $25,000 and the suspect’s boat, motor, and two freezers were seized. The defendant was a habitual violator of fishing laws and he had been cited eight times since 1989. The suspect’s fishing privileges had been previously revoked on two separate occasions. For this case, the judge ordered 12 years of revocation of the man’s fishing privileges. The man was fined a total of $4,803.

Warden Hochhausen met with an individual in February regarding the person’s purchasing of fishing licenses during a period of revocation. The person’s DNR privileges had been revoked in 2011 for failing to pay a citation for fishing without a license. The person stated said he/she wasn’t aware the citation hadn’t been paid off. Enforcement action was taken.

Wardens Meghan Jensen, of Trempealeau, and Bob Jumbeck, of Alma, investigated a fisherman who was thought to be over the possession limit on panfish. Through their investigative efforts, it was found that the fisherman was in possession of 140 bluegills. The possession limit is 50 bluegills. Enforcement action was taken.

Warden Edward McCann, of La Crosse, and deputy warden Vong Xiong contacted an individual who shot a squirrel off the road while participating in a squirrel hunting tournament. Enforcement action was taken.

District 11 — Peshtigo area

No report available.

District 12 — Green Bay area and Northeast Operations Marine Unit 

Warden Alyssa Neff-Miller, of southern Manitowoc County, concluded an investigation in February regarding a subject who harvested three deer during the 2016 hunting seasons. The investigation led to the discovery of several DNR hunting violations that resulted in the seizure of one deer. The violations included failure to register two deer, failure to immediately validate carcass tags, and leaving treestands up on state land after hunting hours.

Warden Neff-Miller concluded an investigation regarding a subject who was reported to have harvested two different bucks during the 2016 archery season. Both hunters involved in the incident were archery hunting together and under the impression that group deer hunting was legal during the archery season. It is illegal to group deer hunt for deer during the archery season. Enforcement action was taken.

Warden Chris Kratcha, of Sturgeon Bay, and recruit warden Roger Arnould, of Fort McCoy, worked the DNR display with forestry and wildlife staff at the hunting expo in Green Bay.

Wardens Ka Yeng Vue and Cara Kamke, both of Green Bay, investigated a taxidermist in February who was not licensed. The investigation revealed that the person was conducting taxidermy work for a few years without a DNR taxidermy license. Enforcement action was taken.

Warden Kamke received a call from a Wrightstown police officer who had contacted four rabbit hunters on land where they did not have permission to hunt. There were two adults and two children (ages 14 and 11). Everyone was carrying their own gun and the two children did not have a small game license. The police officer documented all the information for follow-up by Kamke.

Northeast Operations Marine Unit

Warden Mike Neal, of Sister Bay, responded to a complaint in February of an illegal net in Rileys Bay. He located the net and pulled it up from the depths to confirm just what was there. Neal contacted the net licensee to figure out who was supposed to have been lifting that net. The net was recovered by Neal. Citations are pending for placing a net in closed area and for some other associated violations that were noted.

Warden Allen, of Kewaunee, handled two separate complaints in February that were related to trespass issues between landowners and coyote hunters. In each case, the coyote hunters had their hounds running on private property without permission. Information was shared with the county sheriff’s department.

District 13 — Oshkosh area

Warden Jacob Bolks, of Appleton, received a complaint in February about an individual who reportedly harvested an antlerless deer in a county in which he did not have a valid antlerless deer carcass tag and registered it on his gun buck carcass tag. Bolks found that the hunter did harvest an antlerless deer on the last day of the November nine-day gun deer season in Door County. A records check confirmed that the hunter did not have a valid antlerless carcass tag for Door County. Enforcement action was taken.

Warden William Hankee, of Fond du Lac, followed up on a citizen complaint in February regarding an individual who was suspected of dumping multiple tires on state-owned lands. Hankee located two large piles of tires (67 tires in total) on the Eldorado State Wildlife Area in central Fond du Lac County that had recently been left in the parking areas. Hankee interviewed the reporting party and was able to discover information connecting the case to a suspect who was under investigation by the Fond du Lac County Sheriff’s Department for illegally dumping tires in a local private cemetery. An investigation with the Fond du Lac County Sheriff’s Department’s David Olig showed that the suspect had dumped the tires on the state lands and in the private cemetery. It also was discovered that the suspect had been paid $1 per tire by a third party to dispose of the tires. Enforcement action was taken by Hankee and by the Fond du Lac Sheriff’s Department.

Warden Jason Higgins, of Oshkosh,  assisted the Winnebago County Sheriff’s Department and Oshkosh Fire Department in retrieving a dog from Lake Winnebago. The dog, “Missy,” was presumed dead after she and her owner went into the lake at the mouth of the Fox River the night before. Missy was believed to have died in the vehicle. Somehow, Missy found her way out. She spent all night wet and on the lake before being noticed later the following afternoon. Higgins used his squad and the fire department (in an air boat) chased Missy, a German shepherd, around on the ice for a little while because she did not want anything to do with people. Eventually Higgins was able to drive his squad along Missy as she was running and lured her to stop with a beef stick. Missy eventually jumped up into Higgins’ squad. Missy was driven off the ice and was reunited with her family. Missy did get to eat the entire beef stick, as she very much deserved it. Missy saw a vet and, other than having a cracked nail or two, she was fine.

Warden Thomas Sturdivant, of Neenah, while conducting sturgeon compliance checks on Lake Winnebago during the 16-day spearing season in February, discovered that a sturgeon spearer in a sturgeon shanty was spearing and fishing from a sturgeon hole. It’s illegal to fish from holes larger than 12 inches.

Warden Sturdivant, while checking shore fishermen who were catching walleyes and perch in Neenah, discovered that one angler was using two crappie rigs with a total of four hooks and baits (minnows). Enforcement action was taken.

Warden Sturdivant, while patrolling for coyote hunters (Outagamie County) in February, discovered four individuals hunting rabbits. Two of the small game hunters had not purchased a valid small game license. Enforcement action was taken.

Warden Sturdivant, while conducting sturgeon compliance checks on Lake Winnebago during the 16-day season (Winnebago County), encountered, on two separate dates, illegal drug activity. One spearer was arrested and another was referred for felony charges.

District 14 — Sheboygan area

No report available.

District 15 — Milwaukee area

No report available.

District 16 — Racine, Kenosha area

Warden Brandon Smith, of Burlington, contacted a subject fishing with nine unattended tip-ups on Silver Lake. The subject placed the tip-ups the evening before and did not return until the following morning. This was the fourth time the subject has been caught fishing with more than three lines and with unattended lines.

Warden Juan Gomez, of Elkhorn, responded to a milk spill in Nippersink Creek. This spill came from a local dairy farm. The farmhands failed to report the spill to the owner of the farm, allowing the milk to flow into the creek for more than 24 hours. A system was established to remove the water from the creek by damming it and having water pumped from the creek. The fire departments of Darien, Walworth, Delavan, Linn, Sharon, and Hebron pumped gallons of clean water into the creek to help flush the milk. All participants worked very hard with the farmer to clean up the spill. The farmer was grateful for the help. There was no environmental impact from the spill due to the quick response from all parties.

Warden Mike Katzenberg, of Delavan, followed up on an ATV incident on Lake Delavan in February where two occupants and the ATV went through the ice. They were going out to go ice fishing under very foggy conditions. They lost their way, drove past their ice shanty and into open water. Both individuals were in the water for 40 minutes until being rescued by the local fire department. Both were transported to the hospital for treatment. Katzenberg followed up on the conditions of the operator and the removal of the ATV.

District 17 — Madison area

Wardens Boyd Richter and Jacob Cross, both of Janesville, and Pearl Wallace, of Watertown, investigated two individuals about their deer hunting activities during the fall 2016 seasons. Richter and Cross contacted one of the subjects the previous week and learned that he had borrowed several tags from his father after harvesting deer with a crossbow. Enforcement action was taken.

Wardens Richter and Cross stopped three juveniles after a soda can was littered at Kiwanis Pond and the juveniles drove away from the area at a high rate of speed. Upon contact, one of the juveniles stated that he had thrown out the can. The wardens also detected the odor of marijuana in the car and requested assistance from the Janesville Police Department. Janesville police officers brought in a K-9, obtained probable cause for a search, and located a small amount of marijuana and paraphernalia. Enforcement action was taken and the juveniles were escorted back to their school to meet with the school resource officer.

Wardens Richter and Cross located two subjects in February who had been driving off-road on public hunting grounds near Milton and got their vehicles stuck. Upon contact, one of the subjects was found to be driving with a suspended driver’s license. Wardens documented significant damage to a prairie grass field that the subjects drove on and took appropriate enforcement action.

Warden John Sinclair, of Madison, investigated a complaint of medical waste that was dumped on a DNR property. Sinclair worked with DNR staff and an environmental contractor to have the waste removed.

Warden Pearl Wallace contacted a UTV operator on Blackhawk Island Road in the town of the Sumner. The UTV did not have registration or a license plate displayed and neither of the occupants under the age of 18 were wearing helmets or seat belts. It was determined that the operator had never taken ATV safety training. Enforcement action was taken.

District 18 — Poynette area

While patrolling park lands and adjoining water bodies in February, wardens Sean Neverman, of Prairie du Sac, and Michael Weber, of Mauston, contacted three anglers fishing from a portable ice shack. Upon contact, the anglers were found to be in possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. Enforcement action was taken.

Warden Paul Nadolski assisted with flooding concerns on the Fox and Wisconsin rivers. Early snow melt and rain caused water levels to come up fast and stay up in moderate flood stage. Several residences in low-lying areas lost power, which was unable to be restored until the water receded. The homeowners refused to evacuate and temporarily operated on generators.

District 19 — Dodgeville area

While warden Marty Stone, of Fennimore, checked numerous anglers on the Mississippi River by air boat in February, Stone assisted one angler with a disabled and stranded hovercraft that was stuck on a floating ice shelf. Stone transported one person back to shore and then assisted the operator in repairing a ripped float.

Warden Ryan Caputo, of Green County, met with a man to register an otter and discovered the man’s son had caught the otter while muskrat trapping. The son took the untagged otter to his father’s house to have him put a tag on it, as the son did not have a tag. Enforcement action was taken.

Wardens Nick Wallor, Marty Stone, and Ryan Caputo helped at the Grant County Outdoor Skills Days at Southwest Wisconsin Technical College in Fennimore. About 600 persons attended the event.

Warden Nick Webster, of Lafayette County, issued warnings to ice fishermen for harassment. Two ice anglers drilled holes and set up tip-ups within 10 to 15 feet of another’s ice shanty and the two individuals in the ice shanty confronted them. The individuals in the ice shanty told the new fishermen that they needed to leave and fish another area of the lake because this was their spot. These four individuals were the only people on the entire lake. Warnings were given for harassment of the fishermen and common courtesy was stressed.

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