District 1 — Ashland area
Warden Amie Egstad, of Bayfield, received a complaint in September of individuals who were operating an ATV in a closed area, and possibly over-baiting for bear. Egstad investigated the area cited in the complaint, and found an ATV trail that led 1.6 miles through paper company land that is in a Managed Forest Land area (no ATV access allowed). Hunters later contacted during the season said they believed the property was owned by the previous paper company that had allowed ATV access. Enforcement action was taken in concert with information on the legal trails/maps for the Bayfield County Forest.
Warden Matt Koshollek, of Drummond, assisted the Bayfield County Sheriff’s Department with a one-vehicle accident in the town of Cable. The driver left the roadway and struck a small boulder with his Corvette before his vehicle came to rest. The driver was found to be intoxicated and was subsequently arrested for OWI.
Warden Adam Stennett responded to a call in September of an injured loon on Fire Tower Road north of Brule. After wrangling the loon with a jacket and rain pants, Stennett successfully released the loon on a nearby lake.
Warden Koshollek observed a UTV being operating on a route in the town of Barnes. The UTV operator was observed weaving the machine in its lane and speeding. Koshollek stopped the UTV and the operator admitted to drinking. The UTV operator was found to be intoxicated and none of the passengers in the UTV were wearing seatbelts. Enforcement action was taken.
District 3 — Park Falls area
Warden Kirk Konichek, of Ladysmith, participated in a hunt-of-a-lifetime event involving two severely disabled youths who were able to harvest a buck, a doe, and a bear.
Wardens Konichek and Curt Butler, along with the Rusk County Safe Hunters of Tomorrow, held the annual Rusk County Youth Outdoor Field Day and learn-to-hunt (LTH) program for pheasants at Trails End Camp for 38 youths.
Warden Tom Heisler, of Winter, investigated a complaint in September regarding illegal activity on a property with agricultural damage permits for bear. Several individuals were involved in baiting violations, tagging violations, and other permit violations. Enforcement action taken.
Warden Heisler investigated information about an individual who took an injured baby bobcat out of the wild and held it for a couple of weeks. The subject was bitten by the cat before it died. The subject later developed an illness and was concerned that he caught something from the cat. The subject started rabies vaccination and the bobcat was sent in for testing. The rabies test was negative so the subject was able to discontinue the rabies shots. Enforcement action was taken.
Wardens Heisler and Rick Peters, of Hayward, assisted an elderly couple in September who launched a boat – along with its trailer – into Lake Chetac. Heisler waded out and unhooked the boat from the trailer and assisted the occupants to shore. The wardens then turned their attention to the trailer and winched it out of the lake.
District 4 — Woodruff area
Warden Jim Jung contacted numerous ATV/UTV operators in September who were in violation of rules while traveling on established routes after receiving complaints of speed and trespassing. Enforcement actions were issued for a child on an ATV without a helmet and an unregistered ATV. Numerous warnings were issued for other ATV violations during these contacts, including speeding, no safety course certificate, not displaying headlamps while on a route, and no license plate.
Warden Matt Meade, of Mercer, responded to complaints in September and contacted a lakeside homeowner who was the subject of a complaint of killing weeds on the lakeshore in front of his home. The investigation revealed the homeowner sprayed the lakeshore with Round-Up to kill emergent vegetation. Enforcement action was taken.
District 7 — Wisconsin Rapids area
Wardens Jon Scharbarth, of Stevens Point, and Nick King responded to a call regarding a goose hunter possibly using an electronic call. The wardens contacted a group of hunters and it was found they had been using an electronic predator caller programmed with goose calls in an attempt to draw geese to their location. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Scharbarth gave a presentation about ATV routes and safety to the Portage County Towns Association’s September meeting.
Warden Randy Dunkel, of Wausau, assisted a homeowner who had young raccoons get tangled in pest-control netting. The raccoons were so tangled they could hardly move. Dunkel was able to cut away the netting to free the animals.
Warden Dunkel worked with the Marathon County Sheriff’s Department in September to provide support and enforcement on the water at a boat race on Lake Wausau.
Warden supervisor Korey Trowbridge investigated a complaint of an illegal treestand and deer bait at the Mead State Wildlife Area. Contact was made with the hunter and enforcement action was taken.
District 9 — Black River Falls area
Warden Molly Detjens, of Adams, and Adams County Sheriff’s Department deputy Shaun Long observed a UTV operating on a roadway with four children as passengers, two in the unprotected cargo box and two in the front seat. One of these children was under 3 years old and none of the children were wearing helmets or seat belts, as required. Enforcement action was taken.
Wardens Kurt Haas, of Black River Falls, and Jaime McDermid stopped at a residence to investigate a litter complaint. As they were knocking on the front door, the man drove up to the house in his truck. It appeared he had been hunting from the attire he was wearing. The man admitted to hunting that morning without a waterfowl license. The man was later found to have coyote hunted without a license, had a loaded shotgun in the vehicle, was hunting with an unplugged shotgun, and was in possession of an untagged fisher. Enforcement action was taken.
Wardens Matt Modjeski, of Sparta, and John Moore responded to a request from a waterfowl hunter who got his boat stuck. The hunter was boating in low-light conditions and dense fog when he ran his boat 20 feet up and onto a floating grass island. The boater requested assistance to free his boat, but the local fire department did not have a rescue boat. Modjeski and Moore used their shallow drive patrol boat to pull the hunter’s boat off of the island.
Wardens Matt Weber, of Tomah, and Mike Weber, of Mauston, investigated complaints regarding a salvage business in Juneau County. The wardens found several violations, including hauling refrigerants without being licensed and improperly releasing refrigerant materials. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Michael Weber contacted a non-resident who had their Wisconsin DNR privileges suspended for failing to pay previous DNR citations. The individual continued to purchase licenses illegally after being suspended. Enforcement action was taken.
District 10 — Wautoma area
Warden Kyle Johnson, of Shiocton, contacted a group of duck hunters near the Wolf River. Upon checking license and equipment, one of the individual’s shotguns was found to have been loaded when their motorboat was underway. The operator of the boat also failed to have completed a boat safety course. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Jonathan Kaiser, of Waupaca, received a complaint in September regarding individuals allegedly shooting sandhill cranes. Violations were confirmed of harvesting a turkey without a license or registering the bird, harvesting a turkey during a time period for which they did not have a valid permit, failing to register the bird, harvesting multiple turkeys, and failure to register any of the birds. Enforcement actions were taken.
Warden Kaiser and supervisor Theodore Dremel, of Wautoma, assisted a disabled hunter during an LTH event in Waupaca in which the hunter harvested their first antlered buck. Wardens then assisted the hunter in processing the deer by working with a local meat processor and the generous landowner.
Wardens Kaiser and Zachary Seitz contacted an individual on Casey Lake who was found to be in a paddle boat without any personal flotation devices. While investigating the personal flotation device violation, the individual was found to be in possession of marijuana. Wardens worked with the Waupaca County Sheriff’s Department to address the violation and enforcement action was taken.
Warden Benjamin Nadolski, of Montello, responded to a citizen call of an apparent car-struck owl one night and arranged for its transport to a licensed rehabilitator.
Warden Mark Schraufnagel, of Clintonville, attended the Jim Johnson Memorial J&H Hunt Çlub youth and women’s day event. J&H has hosted this event for 24 years. The event is a great opportunity to try many different outdoor activities.
Warden Schraufnagel assisted the Belle Plaine Sportsmen’s Club with their pheasant LTH event. Many kids were successful in harvesting their first pheasant.
Wardens Schraufnagel and Jacob Cross, of Shawano, attended the Navarino State Wildlife Area’s field day and discussed ATV and boat safety with elementary students from local schools.
District 11 — Peshtigo area
Warden Clark Delzer, of Shawano, contacted a fishing boat on White Clay Lake and found that the operator appeared to be intoxicated. Field sobriety tests indicated impairment and the man was arrested for operating a boat while under the influence.
Warden Paul Hartrick, of Oconto Falls, responded to a call of a dead bald eagle between Oconto Falls and Lena. Hartrick went to the location and found a wing and some feathers, but no eagle. Hartrick found that an individual had cut the eagle’s legs off and threw the eagle carcass into the ditch. Warden Hartrick went to the suspect’s residence and met with him. The man was found to be in possession of the eagle parts and enforcement action was taken.
While patrolling the Peshtigo River, wardens Timothy Werner, of Crivitz, and Rich Maki made contact with a subject on felony parole. They determined that the subject was under the influence of an intoxicant, but conditions of the man’s parole prohibited the subject from consuming alcohol. Enforcement action was taken.
District 15 — Milwaukee area
Warden Blaine Ziarek was patrolling Big Muskego during the early teal season in September when he contacted two hunters about shooting wood ducks and failing to retrieve downed game. Six wood ducks were seized and enforcement action was taken.
Wardens Blaine Ziarek and Marcus Medina worked Muskego and Vernon lakes during the early teal season and came upon hunters who were in violation of shooting early and possessing unplugged guns. One hunter was arrested for going armed while under the influence of marijuana; he was turned over to the Muskego Police Department.
Wardens Steve Sanidas and Juan Gomez were requested to go to Kohler Andrae State Park for a complaint of a vehicle operator who was operating while intoxicated. While handling that violation, the wardens found a firearm inside the vehicle. The individual was processed for a motor vehicle OWI (first offense), and charges for going armed while intoxicated are pending the result of blood tests. The Sheboygan County Sheriff’s Department assisted in this call.
Warden Steve Sanidas was requested by the Waukesha County Sheriff’s Department to respond to the scene of a bald eagle that had been struck by a vehicle in the town of Ottawa. The eagle was severely injured and did not survive.
Warden Sanidas assisted the Waukesha County Sheriff’s Department with an investigation of a deer carcass that was dumped on private land. A witness to the violation identified the suspect who has a long history with law enforcement, including previous criminal DNR violations. Enforcement action was taken for littering and unauthorized possession of a car-killed deer.
Warden Mike Katzenberg was contacted by the Williams Bay Police Department regarding two individuals removing driftwood out of Geneva Lake during the middle of the night. The individuals were contacted and enforcement action was taken.
Warden Marcus Medina conducted a traffic stop on I-94 after a vehicle was observed driving erratically and hitting the median concrete barrier. The operator was found to be under the influence of an intoxicant. The operator was arrested and charges are pending.
Warden Medina assisted with a complaint call in Milwaukee regarding residences being hit by gunfire. Medina heard gunshots and patrolled the area where the shots originated. Medina observed a group of four walking away from the Little Menomonee River where the shots were heard. Medina followed the individuals and called the Milwaukee Police Department for assistance. A traffic stop was conducted by Milwaukee Police Department and it was found that two of the occupants discharged a 9mm within the city limits. The handgun was also illegally concealed beneath the driver’s seat.
District 17 — Madison area
Warden Boyd Richter, of Madison, was patrolling the Goose Lake public hunting grounds in September when he found evidence that someone had been target shooting in one of the parking lots and littered the target they had propped up against a DNR property information sign. An investigation led to a suspect, and it was confirmed the person was the one doing the shooting and littering. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Richter was patrolling near Stoughton when he contacted a revoked hunter deer hunting with a crossbow. The subject said he did not have a license. During the contact, Richter learned that the hunter had also failed to register a deer that was shot the previous fall during the archery deer season. The hunter’s privileges had been revoked for failing to pay a ticket for a previous hunting violation. Enforcement action was taken.
Wardens Jake Donar and Ryan Caputo, of Madison, responded to a call in September concerning multiple geese that had been dumped in a ditch. The wardens did contact individuals who were determined to have dumped the carcasses. The investigation also led to others who were apprehended for hunting geese without a valid license. Enforcement actions were taken.
While working the early teal season, warden Jake Donar contacted waterfowl hunters who loaded their firearms approximately 30 minutes before legal shooting hours and harvested birds early. This case resulted in enforcement action being taken on five hunters shooting before hours, hunting with lead shot, and illegally harvesting a merganser.
Warden Caputo investigated the dumping of several bags of trash along the roadway just south of Monroe. The investigation located the individual responsible. Enforcement action taken.
Dodge, Jefferson, Rock counties
Warden Ryan Ellifson, of Jefferson, and wildlife biologist Sam Jonas gave presentations at the Grelton Conservation Club’s LTH pheasant event. Ellifson later gave a presentation on wetlands and aquatic animals to third and fourth grade students at St. Peters School in Helenville.
Warden Peal Wallace, of Watertown, was at the Princes Point Wildlife Area in the town of Hebron when she saw a group of three individuals harvesting ducks on a pond north of the Bark River. The group had 11 wood ducks in their possession when contacted; two of the individuals had harvested four wood ducks and the third had harvested three. State law prohibits any person from shooting or attempting to shoot more than three wood ducks in a day. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Jason Higgins, of Oshkosh, received a call of two individuals shooting early and shooting something other than teal during the teal-only season. Higgins contacted the two, who were referenced in the call, near Rush Lake. The two indicated that they shot two teal and that was all they shot. During the course of the investigation, it was determined the subjects shot early and each shot a hen mallard, which they concealed. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Higgins and Taylor Meinholz, of Madison, investigated a call concerning a person who shot a turkey during the 2017 spring season without a license. The wardens confirmed the individual never registered the turkey and did not possess a valid license to hunt turkeys. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Michael Disher, of Chilton, observed a pair of dove hunters on the Brillion State Wildlife Area. When contacted for licenses, it was found the pair had one unplugged shotgun, an entire box of lead shot, no HIP certification, and they had illegally operated and parked their truck on state land. Enforcement action taken.
Warden supervisor Chris Shea, of Oshkosh, and warden Meinholz investigated a closed season waterfowl case during the teal season. The wardens learned that two hunters shot and killed a sandhill crane and a mallard. The hunters tossed the birds in the woods to dispose of them. Enforcement action was taken.
Sauk County area
Warden Amanda Kretschmer, of Sauk County, contacted two people fishing from a pier at Newport Beach Park, and determined the two were in possession of four undersized walleyes and one person was without a license. Enforcement action was taken.
Wardens Sean Neverman and Kretschmer contacted individuals waterfowl hunting in Devil’s Lake State Park, and found that one individual was in possession of mallards beyond the bag limit – and was also hunting in a closed area. Enforcement action was taken.
Antigo County area
Warden Andy Dryja, of Langlade County, responded to a complaint in September of an individual illegally operating an ATV on state land. Dryja found that the person was using the recreational vehicle to maintain a bear bait, while other hunters in the area were following the rules by walking into their hunting spots. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Dryja joined the White Lake hunter education group to host the annual fall hunter education class at the DNR’s Langlade ranger station. Approximately 30 new hunters were trained and certified.
Warden Brad Dahlquist, of Crandon, responded to a two-vehicle UTV accident near Argonne in September. While on the scene, it was found that one UTV was struck by a second UTV while traveling in opposite directions on Double Bend Road. Speed by one of the operators was found to be a contributor to the accident, resulting in minor injuries. Following investigation, enforcement action was taken.
Warden Dahlquist made contact in September with two individuals found to be in possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia near a public boat landing in Crandon. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Dahlquist held an annual youth bear hunt for those facing terminal illnesses during the 2017 bear season. A 10-year old hunter successfully harvested a 200-pound bear.
Warden Tim Otto, of Antigo, encountered a person fishing a trout stream in September. Otto recognized the man from five days prior, when the person was in court for a previous fishing-without-a-license citation issued in August. The subject still did not have a fishing license or trout stamp and is unable to purchase a license due to a court order. Enforcement action taken.