District 1 – Baudette area
CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked bear hunters in western Roseau county and Kittson counties. Enforcement action was taken on hunters who failed to register their baits. An investigation continues regarding a deer that was shot in western Lake of the Woods County.
CO Eric Benjamin (Warroad) worked OHV, boat and water safety, angling, and hunting enforcement. Time was primarily spent on checking bear and goose hunters this week.
CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck) reports working ATVing, bear hunting, and early goose season activity throughout the week and Labor Day holiday weekend. Time also was spent assisting the sheriff’s office with the execution of a search warrant and the felony arrest of the suspect.
CO Kyle Quittschreiber (Blackduck) focused on checking bear-hunting activity during the course of the week. Time also was spent checking ATVers and anglers.
District 2 – Bemidji area
CO Tom Hutchins (Crookston) reports spending time following up with a water appropriations case. Time also was spent following up on wetlands and public waters cases.
CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji) worked angling and boating activity on area lakes. CO Vollbrecht also spoke with a local radio station regarding fall hunting seasons and checked goose hunters.
CO Brian Holt (Bemidji) focused on bear hunting and recreational vehicle activity. CO Holt also worked a few days on Leech Lake and continued to work on a background investigation for the next CO academy. E
CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports that an eagle that was killed by a semi-truck was picked up, and CO Vinton delivered it to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials. Ricing on area lakes has begun. CO Vinton assisted an angler with a small northern pike that had swallowed the lure. While CO Vinton released the fish, the angler admitted he did not possess a fishing license. Enforcement action was taken.
CO Angie Warren (Detroit Lakes) worked possible hydraulic jet and weed roller violations. A call about a trailer left at a public access was received.
CO Bill Landmark (Moorhead) spent the week checking anglers, dove and goose hunters, performing boat and water safety checks, and monitoring AIS issues. The officer followed up on hydro-jet violations and received a complaint about a commercial minnow trap that had not been checked and contained dead minnows.
District 3 – Fergus Falls area
CO Troy Richards (Fergus Falls) concluded some investigations with charges pending. Goose hunting in the area was very slow. Dove hunters, however, were reporting good action.
CO Tricia Plautz (Henning) assisted Otter Tail County officials with the search and rescue of a missing boater.
CO Paul Nelson (Elbow Lake) checked fishermen, boaters, early goose hunters, and dove hunters. AIS enforcement was worked, too. Several goose and dove hunters were checked.
CO Shane Osborne (Evansville) and CO Richards investigated a call from the Fergus Falls Police Department regarding a dead calf in Wright Lake in the city of Fergus Falls. The owner didn’t have access to a boat, so the officers roped the dead calf and towed it to shore so the farmer could remove it from the lake.
CO Jeff Johanson (Osakis) continued to work fishing, boating, and AIS enforcement on and around area waterways. Early goose and dove hunters were checked. A child welfare concern was responded to at Lake Carlos State Park, and a wetland-filling complaint was received and investigated.
CO Tony Anderson (Morris) assisted the Stevens County Sheriff’s Office during the arrest of an uncooperative suspect.
District 4 – Walker area
CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) reports a busy holiday weekend. Several ATVers, boaters, anglers, and hunters were enjoying the nice weather. Bear-hunting opener was a success for many hunters.
CO Duke Broughten (Longville) continues to receive complaints about ATVers tearing up roads and trails.
District 5 – Eveleth area
CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls) reports bear hunting is in full swing with success seen by most in the area. Enforcement action for the week included transport of an untagged bear, hunting over an unregistered bait, establishing a bear bait without a license, littering, and illegal transport of sturgeon.
CO John Slatinski (International Falls) reports the majority of the week was spent monitoring bear-baiting activity and then checking bear hunters. Hunters are reminded to know and understand the requirements when establishing bait stations. CO Slatinski also followed up on complaints about illegal camping, monitored AIS compliance, and worked at the Minnesota State Fair
CO Coleen Adam (Ray) reports she met with the county attorney on pending cases, handled calls related to bear season, and contacted ATVers riding in the road right of way.
CO John Velsvaag (Cook) checked bear hunters and anglers this past week. Fishing has picked up on area lakes. CO Velsvaag received several calls about tagging and registration for bear hunters and fish slot sizes on Lake Vermilion.
CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked bear and early goose openers, anglers, and ATVers, and investigated two wetland-filling violations. Bear and goose hunters enjoyed success. One nonresident hunter had multiple violations, most of which were baiting violations, in his quest for a bear.
CO Matt Frericks (Virginia) reports bear hunters say their baits getting hit but so far only marginal success in harvesting a bear. Cooler weather during the weekend brought out high numbers of ATVers. Of those, one was arrested for third-degree DWI by CO Frericks.
District 6 – Two Harbors area
CO Sean Williams (Ely) reports an active start to the bear season. Most hunters contacted reported a good amount of activity at their baits, and success for hunters was overall high.
CO Mary Manning (Grand Marais) worked a busy start to the bear-hunting season. The officer checked bait stations, hunters, and bear camps. Enforcement action was taken against a hunter who illegally killed two bears.
CO Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) saw first-hand why sometimes humans need to override their navigation systems. When the road you’re on turns into a snowmobile trail, which turns into a two-track trail, which turns into a muddy jungle, it’s time to override. Even rocks scraping parts off the bottom of the car couldn’t stop one person from not relying on his navigation system. The two-door convertible eventually bottomed out in deep, muddy ruts. The officer assisted the couple in getting their luggage so they could make their flight to Chicago the next day.
CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Tofte) patrolled campgrounds, state parks, and responded to a burning complaint.
District 7 – Grand Rapids area
CO Randy Patten (Northome) checked bear hunters and patrolled for illegal ATV operation. Enforcement action was taken for transporting a loaded firearm and failure to validate a bear site tag.
CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) worked bear-hunting activity, checked anglers, and responded to animal-related complaints. CO Fairbanks, and his K9 partner Si, also provided demonstrations at the Bovey Farmers Day event.
CO Sarah Grell (Grand Rapids) spent time checking bear-hunting activity this past weekend. She also spent time working goose hunting and fishing activity.
CO Jimmy Van Asch (Hill City) reports bear hunters were slowed down by heavy rains, while goose hunters experienced success throughout the long weekend.
CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) worked a busy bear opener with some success had by local bear hunters. Enforcement action was taken for failing to register a bear bait station, failing to have ID at a bear bait station, and hunting without a license for bears.
District 8 – Duluth area
CO Andy Schmidt (Duluth) spent much of the week working ATV enforcement, including working a detail with other district officers in the Nemadji State Forest. CO Schmidt worked the opening weekend of the bear-hunting season and continued to check bait stations.
CO Nicholas Prachar (Brookston) reports a busy start to the bear season. CO Prachar also responded to complaints about PWCers operating in a swimming area. Appropriate enforcement action was taken.
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) attended the State Fair with K9 Schody and spoke with people about the DNR K9 unit and assisted with a short demo. A TIP call about an illegally taken deer was taken, and the investigation is ongoing with assistance from local tribal wardens. Bear hunters are reportedly having decent success in the area. A complaint about early goose hunters hunting in the city limits of Moose Lake was investigated with the local police department. The hunters were gone when officers arrived.
CO Jeff Humphrey (Cromwell) worked AIS, boating, angling, OHVing, and bear and goose hunting enforcement during the week. Calls were taken on bear hunting and baiting questions/concerns. CO Humphrey also investigated a possible wetland violation and took a call about an injured animal.
Lake Superior Marine Unit
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked lake trout anglers on Lake Superior and worked on commercial fishing investigations. Early goose hunters and wild rice harvesters were checked, and bear baits were monitored.
District 9 – Brainerd area
CO Tim Collette (Crosslake) checked bear hunter. Recreational boating and ATVing activity was heavy during the holiday weekend. The officer also contacted many property owners operating weed rollers with expired permits and illegally using hydro jets to remove aquatic vegetation.
CO Jim Guida (Brainerd) worked a busy week of watercraft, bear hunting, and all-terrain vehicle enforcement. A report was received about early goose hunters illegally hunting within the city limits of Brainerd.
CO Karl Hadrits (Crosby) checked on wild rice harvest, early goose hunting, bear hunting, and fishing activity. Deer hunters, and those who feed deer or wildlife, are reminded that due to chronic wasting disease found on an area captive deer farm, it is now illegal to feed or attract deer in this area by placing salt, minerals, grains, fruits, vegetables, hay, or other food capable of attracting or enticing deer .
CO Patrick McGowan (Pine River) patrolled for bear and goose hunters during the holiday weekend. CO McGowan also patrolled area lakes for boating activity.
CO Eric Sullivan (Pequot Lakes) responded to a disturbance at the Pillsbury State Forest campground. Parties involved were advised the campground is public and everyone needs to get along. The Foothill State Forest ATV trails were busy during the weekend. ATV violations included careless operation, illegal youth operation, and registration issues.
CO Amber Ladd (McGregor) worked bear baiting and hunting activity, as well as ATVing activity. She worked anglers on area lakes and contacted several folks who were harvesting wild rice. She contacted a couple of groups of bear hunters who had been placing bait on public land and using their ATVs to go off the forest roads. She explained that the big-game exception to ATV travel off forest roads does not apply to bear baiting. Enforcement action was taken.
District 10 – Mille Lacs area
CO Gregory Verkuilen (Garrison) worked the bear-, dove-, and goose-hunting openers. Boating and ATV complaints also were addressed during the holiday weekend.
CO Chris Tetrault (Isle) reports that a lot of people were enjoying their Labor Day weekend. The officer gave a law talk at a local bear guides camp prior to the bear opener. Assistance was given to the State Patrol with a vehicle accident in Isle.
CO Scott Fitzgerald (Malmo) reports working bear hunters during the week and weekend. The officer took a wolf-depredation call in which USDA trappers were called. Time also was spent monitoring ricing activity.
CO Dustie Speldrich (Willow River) checked bear hunters during the opener. She also checked early goose hunters and handled public waters violations.
CO Dan Starr (Onamia) reports bear damage in crops has increased, so CO Starr is working with farmers to find a solution to the problem.
CO Bret Grundmeier (Hinckley) took several bear-baiting complaints and also had some farmers lose calves to wolf depredation. One livestock owner reported that while checking his cattle, he came upon a group of about half a dozen wolves actively dragging one of his 4-day-old calves deep into a swamp. The farmer chased away the wolves, and a half-eaten calf carcass later was recovered. The same farmer had has three other missing calves in the past two weeks.
CO Luke Croatt (Wealthwood) checked rice harvesters during the week and weekend. A fair number of bear hunters had success over the weekend, even with the abundance of berries.
District 11 – St. Cloud area
CO Joyce Kuske (Little Falls) conducted a falconry licensing inspection, issued permits for nuisance beavers, and handled a call about nuisance coyotes in a homeowners yard. More cabin owners were educated about the illegal uses of hydraulic jets, and complaint calls about mallards kept in a dog kennel and goose hunters’ pellets hitting a house roof were handled.
CO Caleb Silgjord (Sauk Centre) spent time during the week monitoring angling activity and preparing for the early goose season. Calls regarding the new feeding ban, trespass issues, and shore-land questions were fielded throughout the week.
CO Frank Rezac (St. Cloud) assisted an area officer with a case involving suspects fleeing in a motor vehicle.
District 12 – Princeton area
CO Mitch Sladek (Big Lake) worked fishermen and boaters. He followed up on a couple of TIP calls of fishing without fishing licenses, dumping goose carcasses, and hunting without a hunting license. He followed up on an illegally taken deer from last fall, a camper at the Sand Dune State Forest who wasn’t paying fees, and assisted fellow officers in trying to locate a suspect who fled. CO Sladek also followed up on a complaint about target shooting in a WMA in Zimmerman.
CO Tony Musatov (Sauk Rapids) checked anglers and goose hunters. A complaint about work in a wetland was investigated.
CO Phil Mohs (Center City) focused on dove, goose, and bear-hunting activities. Assistance was provided to CO Krauel following a vehicle pursuit in Mille Lacs County.
CO Rick Reller (Buffalo) was busy with the dove season and early goose hunting. Dove opener was slower than last year – the opposite of the early goose season, with a good number of geese. Enforcement action was taken for hunting without the proper license and hunting with a shotgun capable of holding more than three rounds.
District 13 – West Metro area
CO Tim Maass (Osseo) conducted an investigation into a possible wetland violation. Time also was spent working AIS and angling enforcement.
CO Brent Grewe (Minnetonka) spent the week checking fishermen and patrolling early season goose hunters.
CO Alexander Birdsall (Waconia) focused on the mourning dove and early goose openers this past week. The Minnesota State Fair information booth was attended, and many questions were answered about numerous topics. A fair goer passed out behind CO Birdsall, and aid was rendered.
District 14 – East Metro area
CO Vuthy Pril (ELCOP) worked the dove and early goose openers during the weekend. He also continued to check anglers and boaters on area lakes and rivers.
CO Tony Salzer (Ham Lake) patrolled Anoka County for angling activity. CO Salzer also received a complaint about illegal vegetation removal on an area lake. The issue is under investigation.
CO Scott Arntzen (Forest Lake) reports working the dove opener and the early goose opener. He also issued a nuisance beaver permit, fielded calls regarding trespassing, and did AIS enforcement.
District 15 – Marshall area
CO Arnaud Kpachavi (Benson) reports time was spent working the DNR Enforcement booth and the dove and goose season openers.
CO Luke Gutzwiller (Madison) spent time monitoring angling activity and dove and early goose hunting. Angling activity increased this last week as many anglers were able to find a successful walleye bite. CO Gutzwiller also assisted with a hunter harassment call involving a dispute over public hunting land.
CO Matt Loftness (Marshall) reports weekend dove hunters outnumbered goose hunters. Hunters are reminded that it is not the responsibility of the license vendor to sell the correct licenses to you. Please review licenses and make sure you have all the required licenses, stamps, and validations before going out.
District 16 – New Ulm area
CO Shane Vernier (Willmar) worked area lakes for angling and boating during the holiday weekend. He also worked goose-hunting activity.
CO Nicholas Klehr (Litchfield) worked on a background investigation for the next hiring process. Other time was spent checking mourning dove hunters and goose hunters.
CO Thor Nelson (New Ulm) worked dove and early goose hunting, fishing, boating, invasive species, and ATV enforcement activities. Mourning doves were prevalent, and most hunters were enjoying some success. Goose-hunting success appeared to be much the same as last year during the opening weekend. Two German short-haired pointers were found 11 miles south of Sleepy Eye on Sept. 2. Please contact CO Nelson if you know who they may belong to.
CO Dustin Miller (Windom) reports a hunter harassment case was investigated because of conflict between groups regarding public hunting locations.
District 17 – Mankato area
CO Chad Davis (Owatonna) checked dove and goose hunters, anglers, boaters, and ATV operators, and monitored AIS activity during the week. The officer also assisted with traffic control at a fatal motor vehicle crash.
CO Chris Howe (St. Peter) was called out at 2:00 a.m. on the goose opener to settle a dispute over property access. Two different groups had designs on hunting the same field, both feeling that they had obtained permission from the landowner.
District 18 – Rochester area
CO James Fogarty (La Crescent) assisted in Winona County on a ginseng case and checked anglers on the Mississippi River.
CO Kylan Hill (Zumbrota) worked a steady mix of fishing and early goose season enforcement. An angler who was cited for fishing without a license told CO Hill that he thinks it’s important that conservation officers are out in the field catching people breaking fish and game laws. In the same breath, the angler also told CO Hill that he didn’t think he would get caught fishing without a license