Minnesota Cuffs & Collars – September 27th, 2013

District 1 – Baudette area

CO Ben Huener (Roseau) assisted Lt. Znajda with a bull elk that was found killed and left in a field in eastern Marshall County. Anyone with information regarding the elk is urged to call Turn in Poachers at 1-800-652-9093.
CO Angie Warren (Thief River Falls) checked small-game hunters, with most reporting finding few birds. CO Warren also investigated a complaint regarding wolf depredation.
CO Robert Gorecki (Baudette) monitored fishing and hunting activity throughout the week. Bear hunters continue to report mixed success.

District 2 – Bemidji area

CO Dan Malinowski (Fosston) received calls about a dead swan, trespassing, an unsubstantiated wolf-depredation complaint, and questions about shoreline and aquatic vegetation removal. The mistake of the week was shooting a nice doe, tagging it, registering it, and then realizing the tag in your pocket was the “bonus” tag.
CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji) worked a busy opening weekend to the waterfowl season. Waterfowl hunters were enjoying a successful weekend with several limits observed. ATV activity was monitored in the area. 
CO Brian Holt (Bemidji) dealt with several nuisance-bear complaints and prepared for an upcoming firearm safety class.
CO Chris Vinton (Detroit Lakes) reports one of the busiest duck openers in recent memory. All groups of hunters checked had birds. Violations included unplugged shotguns, failure to validate deer tags, overlimits of ducks, and unsigned stamps.
CO Phil Seefeldt (Moorhead) followed up on reports of juveniles shooting from a motor vehicle, duck hunters failing to retrieve downed birds, and wanton waste of geese.
CO Gary Forsberg (Pelican Rapids) reports that a fair number of hunters were out for the opener of the waterfowl season. One waterfowl hunter was found with a magazine extender on his shotgun, and no plug in the gun. When asked how many shells he had in the gun, the hunter said there were 12.

District 3 – Fergus Falls area

CO Troy Richards (Fergus Falls) reports a very busy waterfowl opener. Early shooting, license and stamp, toxic shot, and unplugged gun violations were addressed.
CO Tricia Plautz (Henning) worked a busy duck opener. Archery hunters were checked throughout the week, and time also was spent checking fishermen and boaters.
CO Shane Osborne (Evansville) checked duck hunters, bowhunters, ATVers, and fishermen. Early shooting complaints were received and investigated.
CO Mitch Lawler (Alexandria) worked waterfowl hunters this past weekend. Fishing activity remains steady on area lakes. One fisherman was contacted as he loaded up his boat at the access. He admitted to having caught “a few” sunfish that day, but “definitely not a limit.” Upon contact, he was found possessing 30 sunfish over his limit; enforcement action was taken.
CO Jeff Johanson (Osakis) assisted local law enforcement with a vehicle pursuit and subject apprehension.
CO Tony Anderson (Morris) concentrated law-enforcement efforts on the waterfowl opener, archery deer hunting, and fishing activity on area lakes. Complaints were fairly limited, except for a trespass issue and some hunters who didn’t realize shooting hours closed for waterfowl at 4 p.m. for the first two weeks, not sunset.

District 4 – Wadena area

CO Sam Hunter (Park Rapids) checked fishermen, hunters, and ATV operators. Officer Hunter also investigated a trespass complaint in which an archer shot onto another person’s property.
CO Greg Oldakowski (Wadena) monitored waterfowl hunting during the opening weekend. Compliance with regulations was generally good, but enforcement action was taken for an unplugged shotgun and license violations. One duck hunter reported that he tried to call to report hunters shooting early on the opener across the lake from them but he couldn’t get reception on his cell phone. When he was able to complete the call he discovered that the season had opened a half hour before sunrise, not at 9 a.m. as they had thought. The group was able to harvest two ducks, although they did report ample opportunity during the timeframe during which they believed the season to be closed.
CO Gary Sommers (Walker) assisted the Cass County Sheriff’s Department with the search for an abandoned boat on Leech Lake and assisted with an invasive species check station. Officer Sommers also made contact with a pair of duck hunters whose dog, a golden retriever, ran away after they fired their first shots of the season. The dog was last seen along the Shingobee River.
CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) received TIP complaints regarding illegal shining and an overlimit of walleyes. One report led to citations issued for an overlimit of 13 walleyes.
CO Larry Francis (Remer) took calls in reference to beaver issues, duck season rules, a permit for a road-killed turkey, and upcoming firearm safety classes.
CO Duke Broughten (Longville) was checking small-game hunting activity when he came upon multiple people in a parking area acting in a strange manner. After he made contact, he discovered they were in possession of a large amount of stolen property. Several people were arrested and are facing felony burglary charges.
CO Jeff Halverson (Staples) monitored duck hunting-activity during the opener. He observed one hunter in a blind using a smartphone to run an electronic duck call. His hunting partner, in a blind 30 yards away, asked if he was using an electronic call, and he answered, “Yes, how did it sound?” His partner replied, “Great, but it is illegal to use!” The hunter said he’d delete it, as he’d just downloaded it from the internet. Officer Halverson stepped out from behind a nearby tree and told him it was a good idea to delete it, as it could cost the hunter his phone and a $285 fine.

District 5 – Eveleth area

CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked the ongoing hunting seasons, waterfowl opener and ATVers, and brought a red-tailed hawk to a wildlife rehabber. 
CO Matt Frericks (Virginia) followed up on an issue in which a lakeshore homeowner has been placing fill consisting of bricks and crushed concrete blocks along the shore.  
CO Mark Fredin (Aurora) worked the duck opener and found few hunters and even fewer ducks. An incident involving a juvenile operating an OHM on a county road was addressed with the parent. The parent believed incorrectly his son could operate the OHM in road ditches.

District 6 – Two Harbors area

CO Sean Williams (Ely) reports waterfowl opener was off to a good start. Grouse hunters are still going strong, and most reports were of fair to good numbers of grouse. Violations included transportation of a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle and taking small game without wearing blaze orange.
CO Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) assisted U.S. Customs and Border Patrol with four people who were bringing 38 walleyes over the limit back from Canada. The people ended up going back to Kansas with steep fines and no fish. Citations also were sent out to bear hunters for unregistered bait stations and for littering. The CO worked the typical uneventful waterfowl opener. One hunter told the CO that Cook County isn’t exactly in the flyway, but where else could you have the choice of so many lakes all to yourself?
CO Mary Manning (Hovland) investigated the possible unlawful killing of a moose in the Isabella area. 
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) reports a bear-hunting investigation was concluded with two citations issued for illegal bear baits.
CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) reports a group of fishermen the officer checked at an access learned to watch weather conditions closely on Lake Superior. While fishing, the anglers encountered a wind shift on the big lake, which made for rough conditions and the small boat taking on water from the waves. Upon reaching shore, the fishermen were a bit rattled by the experience and had a new respect for Lake Superior.

District 7 – Grand Rapids area

CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) started K-9 patrol training and worked the waterfowl opener.
CO Sarah Sindelir (Grand Rapids) worked duck opener this past week and found hunters had some success. She also worked her patrol area for small-game and bow-hunting activity.
CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) took action on an individual for operating on a U.S. highway with an ATV and for another individual who had a loaded gun in a motor vehicle. 
CO Shawn Wichmann (Hill City) completed a fishing case involving nonresident anglers with an overlimit of panfish. 
Water Resource Enforcement Officer Tony Arhart (Grand Rapids) tracked open Wetland Conservation Act cases, aquatic invasive species, and worked the state waterfowl opener. 

District 8 – Duluth area

CO Andy Schmidt (Brookston) reports illegal night-shining complaint areas were worked, with one individual being charged with several violations and possibly a felony. Officer Schmidt also assisted at the scene of a head-on car crash that resulted in serious injuries requiring air medical transport to the hospital. 
CO Kipp Duncan (Duluth) focused enforcement efforts on fall hunting activities. Officers Schmidt and Duncan found one individual hunting, which resulted in several violations – a couple could include felony charges. 
CO Jeff Humphrey (Cromwell) reports ricers continued to enjoy a bumper crop – one of the best in years. 
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) reports a complaint about tampering with logging equipment and stealing fuel that occurred in the Nemadji State Forest was investigated. 
Lake Superior Marine Unit
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked more anglers. A new ATV trail corridor was checked in Lake County, and questions were answered about small-game licensure for youth hunters. 
CO Troy Ter Meer (Lake Superior Marine Unit) attended water survival training. The CO also checked  bear hunters, duck hunters, and anglers. 

District 9 – Brainerd area

CO Jim Guida (Brainerd) worked the waterfowl opener in the Brainerd area. Most hunters indicated they would have had more ducks in the bag if they could have hit them. 
CO Tim Collette (Pequot Lakes) worked the waterfowl season opener on several area lakes. Opening day saw good hunter success. The second day of season saw much less activity.
CO Bob Mlynar (Aitkin) concentrated on waterfowling enforcement. Contact was made with early goose hunters in possession of marijuana and six waterfowl hunters who forgot to bring life jackets.
CO Mike Lee (Crosslake) was at Camp Ripley this past week preparing for the upcoming conservation officer fall in-service training being held at Ripley. Officer Lee also received a call about calves being killed by wolves. The incident was investigated, and it was confirmed that wolves killed the calves.

District 10 – Mille Lacs area

CO Greg Verkuilen (Garrison) checked duck hunters and their boats on the opening weekend of duck season. Transporting boats with water and plugs was the most common problem.
CO Chris Tetrault (Isle) reports charges were filed with the county attorney’s office regarding a bear that was taken illegally. The officer also investigated a report about wolf depredation. Law enforcement action was taken for small-game hunting without a license, hunting waterfowl without a state waterfowl stamp, and no plug in a shotgun.
CO Scott Fitzgerald (Malmo) reports a TIP call about someone dumping walleyes along a frontage road was investigated, and lots of hunting law-related questions were fielded during the week.
CO Dustie Heaton (Willow River) investigated suspicious activity in the Nemadji State Forest. Rolled-up carpet and an old mattress were found buried in an area not easily accessible by motor vehicle.
CO Bret Grundmeier (Hinckley) saw quite a decrease in bear-hunting activity and an increase in grouse hunting and goose hunting. Patrol during the waterfowl opener found some hunters using shotguns capable of holding more than three shells and in possession of toxic shot.
WREO Rob Haberman took a call about a dead fawn – possibly shot – at the Brainerd Arboretum. Evidence showed previous car injuries most likely attributed to the fawn’s early departure.

District 11 – St. Cloud area

CO Caleb Silgjord (Sauk Centre) conducted an investigation regarding an untagged deer, with charges being filed. Silgjord also located a prohibited materials fire. The landowner was surprised to find out it is illegal to burn mattresses and shingles. 
CO Joyce Kuske (Little Falls) helped a neighboring officer investigate a complaint about an untagged archery-killed deer. The deer was seized and a citation was issued. A TIP call was received regarding someone live-trapping raccoons out of season. The trapper was found using untagged traps. The traps were seized and enforcement action was taken. A continued problem is occurring at Blanchard Dam east parking lot with people moving the boulders to gain access to drive vehicles along the Mississippi River. One group of waterfowlers had an unexpected animal seized by the officer – a beaver they had shot that was swimming in their decoys. The beaver was still flopping around in the water when the officer pulled up to their duck blind.
CO Rhonda Friese (Long Prairie) checked hunters and recreational vehicle operators. CO Friese also participated in the annual “Envirofest” hosted by Todd County Soil and Water Conservation District. Assistance was given to the Todd County Sheriff’s Office with several calls. 
WREO Keith Bertram spent the week checking boaters and hunters. An aquaculture inspection was conducted in Morrison County. 
CO Paul Kuske (Pierz) reports that as he traveled on a county highway, an ATV operator passed him on the road. The ATV, traveling in excess of 60 mph, was stopped, and the operator was ticketed for operating on a public highway and no ATV safety training. The person called his girlfriend to come pick him up at the scene. Coincidently, she was stopped by CO Kuske a year ago for the same thing.

District 12 – Princeton area

CO Angela Londgren (Princeton) worked the duck-hunting opener and reports seeing a fair number of hunters, with mostly wood ducks and geese in their bag limits.
CO Rick Reller (Buffalo) followed up on several hunting complaints in the Wright County area relating to trespass, property damage due to shotgun BBs, illegal baiting, and late shooting of waterfowl.
CO Brandon McGaw (Mora) worked several trespass complaints during the week. Follow-up investigations were conducted on wetland violations and a possible public water violation.

District 13 – West Metro area

CO Thephong Le (ELCOP) provided a ride-along opportunity for a Dakota County park ranger. He also took enforcement action for unplugged guns while ducks hunting.
CO Brent Grewe (Minnetonka) came in contact with a fisherman who had 22 sunfish over his daily limit and was cited. Other violations included no life jackets and having lead shotgun shells in possession while waterfowl hunting.
CO Jackie Glaser (Mound) worked the duck opener in Hennepin County. She continued to check fishing and boating activity on Lake Minnetonka. 
CO Vang Lee (ELCOP) worked the duck opener in the Osseo station and checked shore fishermen on metro-area lakes and rivers. He responded to a TIP report of set lines on the Mississippi River and a complaint regarding a dead deer in Maple Grove. 

District 14 – East Metro area

CO Scott Arntzen (Forest Lake) spent the week checking small-game hunters, archery deer hunters, and working the waterfowl opener. CO Arntzen investigated a deer taken by a firearm during the archery deer season, which resulted in enforcement action. 
CO Brad Johnson (Ham Lake) reports that he worked the waterfowl opener at the Carlos Avery Wildlife Management Area. Enforcement action was taken on a large number of hunters who entered the area during closed hours. CO Johnson also issued citations for possession of lead shot and unplugged shotguns.
CO Lisa Kruse (White Bear Lake) discovered that somebody had closed and locked a gate to the Mud Lake access in Lamprey Pass WMA and also put up “no trespassing” signs on trees and posts by the gate.

District 15 – Marshall area

CO Gary Nordseth (Worthington) reports that bluebird conditions for the waterfowl opener brought out few hunters in the area. Most of the hunters that the officer checked had a few ducks. Enforcement action included an investigation regarding the illegal taking of a swan.
CO Doug Lage (Marshall) reports that a firearms injury was reported in Lac qui Parle County in the Sweetwater WMA, as a hunter was injured when a pellet struck the hunter in the finger.
CO Craig Miska (Ortonville) worked a busy waterfowl opener. There were many complaints about hunters shooting early.
CO Jim Robinson (Slayton) spent the week working archery deer hunters and duck opener. Hunter turnout for duck opener was good. 

District 16 – New Ulm area

CO Brett Oberg) Hutchinson worked a busy opening to the 2013 waterfowl season. Unplugged shotguns were the theme of the day on opening morning. Enforcement action also was taken for no license, allowing illegal youth hunting, and stamp violations.
CO Jeff Denz (Willmar) worked the waterfowl opener and followed up on complaints about a hunter shooting a grebe and trespass.
CO Jason Beckmann (Windom) worked the waterfowl opener. Time also was spent with hunters at local public water accesses, assisting with cleaning of boat trailers and answering questions related to aquatic invasive species laws and hunting.

District 17 – Mankato area

CO Chris Howe (St. Peter) assisted two local agencies with traffic and search and rescue calls this week.
CO Corey Wiebusch (Mankato) worked waterfowl opener. Areas of success for waterfowl varied. A trespassing complaint was taken. The officer also gave a law and ethics talk at a local safety class.
CO Steve Chihak (Spring Valley) spent the week checking small-game and archery deer hunters. Trespass complaints were investigated. A Conservation Day was attended at Forestville State Park.
WREO Julie Siems (SE) worked a busy waterfowl opener. K9 Brady assisted in locating a goose, resulting in an overlimit of geese.

District 18 – Rochester area

CO Scott Fritz (LaCrescent) dealt with a complaint in which a campground was draining its swimming pool into a trout stream; no fish were killed.
CO Tom Hemker (Winona) reports a good waterfowl opener. One access was reported to have 60 units, and one hunter went out at 2:30 p.m. on Friday to get his spot. 
CO Mitch Boyum (Rushford) worked the waterfowl opener on the Mississippi River near La Crescent. Hunters were concerned about the lack of teal. Violations encountered included the possession of toxic shot. Trespass calls were dealt with, too.

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