District 7 — Wisconsin Rapids area
Warden Jon Scharbarth, of Stevens Point, issued citations for various boating and fishing violations. Scharbarth worked on a dogs-chasing-deer complaint and educated anglers about the VHS and AIS laws.
Warden Mike Rader, of Wausau, interviewed a subject in the Lincoln County jail regarding fishing violations in Marathon County. The subject was found to have fished without a license, possessed undersized smallmouth bass, and obstructed a warden. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Rader interviewed a subject regarding illegal deer violations. The subject was found to have shot an alleged vehicle-injured deer, illegally transported the deer, butchered it, and cut off its velvet antlers without notifying a law enforcement agency or obtaining the appropriate permits. Enforcement action was taken, and the antlers and venison were seized as evidence.
While checking fishing licenses in Wausau, warden Rader contacted a subject who had an outstanding warrant for a drug offense from Marathon County. A search of the subject produced items that appeared to be methamphetamine and marijuana.
Wardens Rader and Paul Leezer investigated a hotline complaint about a goose shot during the closed season near Marathon City. The subjects were found later to have obstructed Rader after one subject admitted to killing the goose and disposing of it on the property. Violations were also uncovered for hunting Canada geese without a valid permit, hunting migratory game birds during the closed season, hunting without a license, possession of migratory bird without a license, hunting waterfowl without state stamp approval, migratory game bird-tagging violations, and failing to report goose harvest as required. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Ben Herzfeldt, of Schofield, investigated a boat accident on Lake Wausau involving two PWCers colliding with each other, causing injury to an adult male. Two subjects on separate PWCs collided head-on after one of the PWCers made a 180-degree turn. The operator of the striking PWC was 11 years old. Herzfeldt cited the adult for allowing underage operation of a PWC and for violating the no-wake law when within 100 feet of another boat.
Warden Herzfeldt followed up on several complaints related to escaped captive deer, bear hunting, and ginseng. Herzfeldt attended the fair in Wausau and answered questions for the public regarding hunting and fishing laws and also attended the Youth Sporting Heritage Days where about 200 kids got a taste of the outdoors.
Warden Paul Leezer attended an enforcement conference for a subject that was found to be burning illegal materials. It was the second time in the past year that illegal materials had been burned on that property.
Warden Barry Fetting, of Marshfield, investigated several environmental complaints in August, including illegal dredging, stream crossings, and obstruction to navigation.
Warden Fetting responded to a non-fatal ATV crash on private property in Wood County. The operator lost control of the ATV after failing to negotiate a corner. The ATV left the trail and struck a tree. The operator was seriously injured and was transported from the scene by ambulance.
Warden Fetting worked boating and fishing enforcement in August that resulted in enforcement action on several occasions. On one occasion, Fetting and Hecht arrested a subject on a warrant when the subject was contacted while fishing without a license. The subject was turned over to the Wood County Sheriff’s Department. Fetting also responded to a tip from a concerned citizen who watched another angler placing an illegal-size fish in a cooler. The subject was contacted and issued a citation.
Warden Fetting staffed the DNR booth at the Wausau and Milwaukee fairs. Fetting spoke at two area hunter education courses and gave a talk at the Arpin library on new laws and safety tips related to archery hunting.
Warden Lockman, of Wisconsin Rapids, issued multiple citations to an ATV operator who struck another ATV, injuring its passenger. He also contacted a fisherman sleeping on the bank of the Wisconsin River below the Nekoosa dam with six fishing poles out. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Lockman cited an individual who dumped a TV in a Wood County trout stream. The TV was a type commonly sold to inmates, and after a few phone calls it was determined who was responsible.
Wardens Bill Miller, of Adams, and recruit warden Kyle Plautz came upon an unoccupied sailboat floating across Castle Rock Flowage. The wardens wrangled the sailboat and were able to find the owner, who was thankful for the help.
Wardens Miller and Plautz contacted a resort about illegally placed waterway markers. They reviewed waterway marker placement with the resort manager and gave suggestions on how to have ordinances created for legal placement. Buoys were removed until ordinances are created by local towns.
Wardens Miller and Plautz observed two people fishing below the dam in Necedah while drinking out of glass bottles. When done fishing, the two people left three glass bottles, an aluminum can, and a brown paper bag on shore and in the parking lot. Enforcement action was taken for littering and fishing without licenses.
Warden Wade Romberg, of Friendship, arrested two ATV and two boat operators for operating while intoxicated, along with many other ATV and boating citations issued.
Warden Romberg assisted the Big Roche a Cri Lake Association with buoys placed on the lake at the dam.
Warden Matt Weber, of Necedah, and DNR forester Chad Nickols worked together on two separate burning cases where televisions, tires, mattresses, and other illegal items were burned. Enforcement action was taken, and the responsible parties made arrangements to have the waste, ash, and contaminated soil removed and taken to a licensed facility.
Warden Weber checked the license of a man who was fishing from shore on the Castle Rock Flowage. The man handed Weber a Wisconsin resident fishing license, which had been issued to him. Upon further investigation, Weber discovered the man was a resident of New York and had also purchased Wisconsin resident archery and gun deer-hunting licenses during 2012. Enforcement action was taken for providing fraudulent information to obtain approvals.
Wardens Weber and Hecht observed several unattended lines along the shore of Castle Rock Flowage. Hecht was dropped off by boat and waited for the fishermen to return. After about 45 minutes, they returned by vehicle, and enforcement action was taken for unattended lines.
District 8 — La Crosse area
Wardens Edward McCann, of La Crosse, and recruit Dustin Gabrielson arrested an intoxicated boater after the boater traveled through a no-wake zone and almost hit a railroad bridge around 11 p.m.
Warden Dale Hochhausen, of Onalaska, and recruit Richard Groeneman investigated a boat accident that happened on the Mississippi River near Dresbach Island. The operator was transported to the hospital for injuries. The boat hit a submerged log and sheared off the lower unit.
Warden Chris Shea, of Trempealeau, and supervisor Tyler Strelow worked boating enforcement on the Black and Mississippi rivers during the La Crosse area’s “Rock the Docks” event. They arrested two boaters for OWI and took other enforcement action for expired registration, no-wake, fishing license, and life jacket violations.
Warden Shawna Stringham, of Viroqua, followed up on information from DNR water guard Marcus Medina regarding a boat that came out of a boat launch with nine short smallmouth bass. Stringham contacted the fishermen and issued citations.
Warden Matt Modjeski, of Sparta, received several complaints regarding electronic waste repeatedly deposited outside the closed office at the Monroe County landfill. The Monroe County Sheriff’s Department was able identify a suspect. Modjeski worked with the detective of the sheriff’s department to contact the suspect. Enforcement action is pending.
District 10 — Wautoma area
Warden Jeff Knorr, of Fremont, assisted the Waupaca County Sheriff’s Department in searching for a suspect who fled from the scene of a fight at a campground. A perimeter was set up around the area, and after two hours, the suspect was located and arrested.
Warden Judi Nigbor, of Montello, has been receiving calls from the Montello Police Department regarding ATV-related complaints in the city. Recently the city allowed ATVers to travel the streets to get to local establishments. The police department has been getting complaints regarding speed and operating on unauthorized streets. Nigbor will be working with the city and the ATV club to resolve the problems.
Warden Nigbor worked with solid waste staff to address a complaint of the illegal disposal of demolished building material.
Warden Nigbor received an illegal dredging call regarding the south shore of Buffalo Lake. Water management specialist Will Stites, water resources specialist Ted Johnson, and two Marquette County LCD staff visited the site with Nigbor. The landowner was contacted, and will be required to restore the site. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Mark Schraufnagel, of Clintonville, investigated a wastewater concern. The investigation determined that an individual was dumping wastewater from stripping wax floors into a stormwater drain. The responsible party was located and ordered to clean up the discharge. Information was forwarded for possible enforcement action.
Warden Schraufnagel attended the Walleyes for Tomorrow-Shawano chapter youth fishing event. This is the second year Walleyes for Tomorrow has sponsored the event. The chapter provides fishing gear to participants and takes them out with a tournament pro on Shawano Lake.
Warden Schraufnagel received a call regarding a piece of rebar sticking out of the water below the Hwy. MMM bridge in Shawano. He checked the area and located rebar. Warden Jim Horne, of Shawano, contacted the Shawano County dive team to remove a rebar/concrete piece from the river.
Wardens Nate Ackerman, of Berlin, and recruit Nick Wallor went to interview a subject who had two setlines. They found an illegal-sized flathead. Enforcement action was taken.
Wardens Ackerman and Wallor interviewed a subject about litter that had been left at a state wildlife area parking area. The subject admitted to leaving garbage and leftover fireworks. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Ackerman partnered with the Berlin Conservation Club to plan the hunters ed appreciation banquet at the club. The banquet was to show appreciation to the all safety program instructors in Green Lake and Marquette counties.
Wardens Ackerman and Wallor assisted fisheries staff in shocking and tagging flathead catfish on the Fox River near Berlin.
Wardens Ackerman and Wallor responded to a hotline complaint about a subject who placed a blind on state land prior to seven days before the start of goose season. It was found that the blind was not placed, but a boat was left unattended and had expired registration. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Mike Young, of Shiocton, received a call about a subject placing fill on the bank of the river in New London. Young took numerous photos of the site and forwarded the complaint to WMS. The landowner is placing the sand in the floodway adjacent to the river and stated the project is environmental engineering and he has plans and has gone through all the proper channels and does not need a permit. The issue was forwarded to water management staff.
Warden Young investigated a call about concrete dumped on the bank of the Wolf River in New London. The subject dumped concrete from his driveway on the bank for rip-rap. The subject will remove the debris.
Warden Young investigated the fill of a creek to create a road and the placement of a pump and water-control structure – all without permits. Young took photos and forwarded them to DNR water management staff and county zoning.
Warden Ben Mott, of Wautoma, observed a septic hauler operating on a road. When the truck went past, Mott noticed the truck did not display current licensing through the DNR. Mott conducted a traffic stop on the truck and talked with the driver. The owner told Mott that the stickers were back at the shop. Mott traveled to the shop and found that the owners had not put the stickers on the trucks because they “did not have time.” The owners have had the stickers in their possession for over three weeks. The business had at least two trucks that were operating without current license displayed. Information was forwarded to a septic specialist, who issued the company a notice of non-compliance.
Warden Mott worked with the Wild Rose Fish Hatchery, Richford Game Club, Waushara County Food Pantry, warden Judi Nigbor, and the Marquette County Food Pantry to make use of fish that were part of the hatchery’s brood stock tested fish. These are selected fish that need to be culled and tested each year. Members of the Richford Game Club assisted in cleaning and packaging 30 trout and salmon weighing anywhere from 1 to 8 pounds. Mott and Nigbor delivered the fish to food pantries.
Warden Mott got a call from a man who had hit a hawk with his truck and it was stuck in the truck’s grill. Mott arrived at the individual’s home where the hawk had been taken out of the grill and set on the ground, where it was hopping around the individual’s garage. Mott caught up the bird and thanked the people for calling. Mott took the bird to Town and County Vet Clinic, where the bird was stabilized and housed overnight until a transporter for Raptor Education Group in Antigo could pick up the hawk.
Warden Ted Dremel, of Waupaca, was an instructor for a trapper education class in New London; 24 trappers graduated.
Warden Dremel and special agent (USFWS) Gary Jagodznski investigated an incident in which a whooping crane was shot in the Ogdensburg area. They found the person responsible for shooting the bird.
Warden Dremel is continuing to address complaints of a septic hauler spreading waste on unapproved sites.
District 13 — Oshkosh area
Wardens Jason Higgins, of Oshkosh, and Thomas Truman, of Winneconne, received a complaint about a subject fishing with too many lines on Lake Winnebago. Higgins and Truman responded and watched the subject fishing with four rods/baits. The subject was cited for that violation.
Wardens Truman and J.J. Redemann, of Fort McCoy, worked boat patrols and fishing enforcement in August. Five fishermen were contacted who did not have valid fishing licenses, and citations were issued.
Wardens Truman and Redemann located hundreds of cardboard boxes that had been dumped on the Rat River state lands. It was learned that the suspect had responded to an on-line Craigslist posting to remove a basement full of boxes from a residence and legally dispose of them. The suspect instead took the boxes and littered them on the state lands. The suspect failed to clean up his litter when given the opportunity. A citation was issued for littering.
Wardens Redemann, Brandon Smith, of Fort McCoy, Higgins, and Truman assisted with the Bull’s-eye for the Youth event held at Critters in Winneconne. The wardens and local 4-H club mentored more than 100 kids at a BB gun-shooting station.
Wardens Kyle Kosin, of Campbellsport, and Redemann contacted a boater on Long Lake for operating without navigation lights. The subject was arrested for OWI.
Warden Kosin contacted ATVers operating on the road. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Kosin contacted multiple vehicles being operated in violation of AIS laws. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Al Erickson, of Fond du Lac, worked AIS enforcement at area boat landings in August. Several traffic stops were made on adjoining roads for AIS violations, such as transporting weeds attached to boat trailers and failing to drain water from live wells. Enforcement action was taken.
Wardens Ryan Propson, of Appleton, and Tom Sturdivant, of Neenah, while working boating enforcement on Lake Winnebago, contacted an individual who had operated his PWC faster than no-wake while within 200 feet of shore. The operator exhibited signs of impairment and admitted to consuming alcoholic beverages. The operator was arrested for boating OWI.
Wardens Propson, of Appleton and Jake Lassila, of Fort McCoy, testified at a trial for a deer-poaching case in Oconto County. Both defendants were found guilty on all charges, and one individual had his hunting privileges revoked.
Warden Propson contacted two individuals who were illegally netting minnows on the Fox River. It’s illegal to harvest minnows on any VHS water body, transport live fish away from a water body, use bait minnows from one water body on another water body, and fish by a means other than hook and line while within 200 feet of a dam. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Tom Sturdivant, of Neenah, issued several citations for fishing without a license in August. One individual, who was fishing in Jefferson Park, had been cited in 2009 for the same offense.
Wardens Sturdivant and Propson testified in Oconto County Circuit Court concerning an illegal deer killed by two individuals during 2012 in Oconto County. Sturdivant and Propson assisted with the investigation due to the location of the subjects involved in Outagamie County. The judge found both parties guilty of all charges, including transporting a loaded firearm in vehicle, hunting within 50 feet of the road’s center, failing to make an effort to retrieve downed game, failing to validate or attach a carcass tag, discharging a firearm from a highway, and discharging a firearm from a vehicle.
District 18 — Poynette area
Warden John Buss, of Sauk City, received a complaint from the Sauk-Prairie Police Department about a subject who went into the car wash and dumped oil from his tractor down the sewer. Enforcement action was taken, and Buss is seeking cleanup restitution for the business.
Wardens Paul Nadolski, of Portage, and Ryan Volenberg, of Poynette, worked with area wardens and the Columbia County Sheriff’s Department in a group effort to respond to complaints on the Hwy. V sandbar in the Wisconsin River just upstream of Lake Wisconsin. Several arrests were made, including a domestic that occurred while deputies and wardens were on the island. An individual choked his wife and slammed her up against a boat. When the officers tried to take the subject into custody, he resisted and was pepper-sprayed. The individual was arrested for domestic violence, disorderly conduct, and resisting arrest.
Warden Nadolski responded to a wildfire in Pacific Township. It appears that someone dumped the remains of a burning barrel next to a brush pile. Strong winds that day ignited the brush pile. A passer-by noticed the smoke coming from the wooded area and called for help. The Portage Fire Department responded and extinguished the fire. The investigation has been turned over to the Poynette ranger for follow-up.
Warden Ryan Volenberg, of Poynette, arrested five individuals for operating a motorboat while under the influence of an intoxicant on Lake Wisconsin. Volenberg also assisted with the arrest of two other operators for OWI.
Warden Volenberg and deputy warden Dan Nehls were checking shore anglers on Lake Wisconsin when they encountered a man having a medical emergency. Volenberg and Nehls requested emergency medical services and monitored the angler until an ambulance arrived. The wardens assisted with carrying the subject up the rocky shoreline to the ambulance. The angler was transported to the Sauk Prairie hospital.