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Friday, February 3rd, 2023

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Minnesota Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – March 23, 2018

District 1 – Baudette area

CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked angling activity on Lake of the Woods. Violations encountered during the week included anglers found in possession of illegal smelt and herring, those angling with extra lines, and anglers possessing illegal-length walleyes.

CO Nicholas Prachar (Baudette) reports an increase in fishing activity on Lake of the Woods and the surrounding tributaries. Angling and snowmobile enforcement were worked.

CO Jeremy Woinarowicz (Thief River Falls) answered a call about dogs chasing deer. He also monitored ice shelter removal and late-season snowmobiling activity. A detail on Lake of the Woods was worked with COs Huener and Benjamin.

CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck) reports working angling and snowmobiling activity throughout the week. Regas investigated a report about a pickup truck that was stuck and blocking a grant-in-aid snowmobile trail. The driver became stuck while using the trail to access private land. Enforcement action was taken for operating a motor vehicle on the grant-in-aid snowmobile trail.

District 2 – Bemidji area

CO Tom Hutchins (Crookston) reports spending time working on cases from the 2017 deer season. Time also was spent assisting a North Dakota game warden with a deer-hunting investigation.

CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji) checked panfish anglers on area lakes. Vollbrecht also responded to a wolf-depredation complaint, worked a detail on Lake of the Woods with other officers, and patrolled snowmobile trails early in the week.

CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports checking late ice anglers. The CO had two fish houses left out well past the removal deadline. One house eventually was seized after the owner was cited for the second year in a row and failed to remove it. The second angler was able to remove his shelter. Both were cited for failing to remove their shelters by the deadline. A couple anglers were also reminded that 2017 angling licenses had expired.

CO Angie Warren (Detroit Lakes) reports public accesses were inspected, and the public is reminded that fish houses cannot be left at accesses and that all litter must be removed.

CO Bill Landmark (Pelican Rapids) followed up on reports of suspicious angling activity.

District 3 – Fergus Falls area

CO Troy Richards (Fergus Falls) reports panfish angling has picked up due to warmer weather. Vehicles and wheel houses are still being seen on lakes. Caution should be exercised, as late-season ice can change rapidly. Shoreline ice is starting to change, and getting on and off may be difficult on some lakes.

CO Tricia Plautz (Henning) checked area anglers throughout the week. The CO also gave a laws and ethics talk at a firearms safety class in Battle Lake.

CO Shane Osborne (Evansville) checked fishermen and ATVers. A fish overlimit complaint was investigated during the week.

CO Mitch Lawler (Alexandria) reports heavy ice-fishing activity on the traditional late-ice panfish spots. Citations were issued for no fishing license and expired registration.

CO Brian Holt (Osakis) worked angling and ATVing activity during the week. Time also was spent monitoring coyote hunting and trapping. The officer worked with county attorneys on preparing for an upcoming court case related to the 2017 deer season.

District 4 – Walker area

CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) continues to primarily check panfish and perch anglers. A bear committee meeting was attended.

CO Colleen Adam (Park Rapids) reports some area lakes are seeing pressure from anglers seeking crappies and sunfish. Enforcement action was taken for no license, shelters out beyond the deadline, and a youth not wearing a helmet on an ATV.

CO Duke Broughten (Longville) spent the week monitoring fishing activity. Broughten also followed up with fish houses left out past the legal deadline, and investigated public waters violations.

District 5 – Eveleth area

CO John Slatinski (International Falls) reports fishing and snowmobiling were again the primary activities in the area this past week. A few trappers who were trying to outsmart coyotes were contacted.

CO John Velsvaag (Cook) checked anglers and a few snowmobilers. He also assisted on a work detail and answered questions regarding the new pike regulations.

CO Matt Frericks (Virginia) spent a majority of his time tracking the removal of ice shelters from Virginia-area lakes. Numerous people left behind the wooden blocks upon which shelters sat. The blocks are now frozen in. Those shelter owners were contacted and warned to remove everything when they remove their houses. Other activity included assisting sheriff’s deputies in searching for a bank robbery suspect in Orr and a barricaded suspect.

CO Mark Fredin (Aurora) has received complaint about bobcats going after chickens and rabbits and being around towns. One got in scuffle with a couple of dogs.

District 6 – Two Harbors area

CO Sean Williams (Ely) reports he and other area law enforcement officers responded to Orr to assist with the search for a suspect after a bank robbery attempt. Two bank employees were sprayed by pepper spray and a suspect was taken into custody near town.

CO Marty Stage (Ely) worked the lakes in the Ely area – both in and outside the BWCA – to check trout and crappie fishermen. Remember that new fishing licenses are now required.

CO Mary Manning (Hovland) attended instructor training and planning meetings at Camp Ripley. Along with U.S. Forest Service Officer Belmore, Manning assisted Cook County with a search for a motorist stranded on a snowmobile trail. Manning also worked with CO Willis and St. Louis County Sheriff’s deputies on a snowmobile water-skipping detail.

CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked primarily in the BWCA, checking anglers with CO Stage.

CO David Schottenbauer (Silver Bay) inspected a turkey complaint area. It was unknown if the suspect turkey was wild or illegally released. Schottenbauer encourages Lake and Cook county sightings of turkeys to be reported to the area wildlife office.

District 7 – Grand Rapids area

CO Randy Patten (Northome) checked anglers, documented fish houses that might not make the removal deadline, helped with removing a vehicle that partially went through the ice, and assisted the sheriff’s office with an attempted felony warrant pick-up.

CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) worked late-season ice anglers and found the success rate to be on the rise. Anglers should use caution when venturing out.

District 8 – Duluth area

CO Jacob Willis (Brookston) checked anglers and snowmobilers. A complaint about a spearing shelter left on the ice on a remote lake was also addressed. The owners were able to chip it out of the ice and remove it prior to Willis’ arrival.

CO Scott Staples (Carlton) worked snowmobiling and ATVing activity in the area. A special detail also was worked on Lake Vermilion near Tower. Enforcement action was taken for failing to transfer ownership, no safety certification, and registration violations. A career fair was attended at Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College, at which several high school students were educated on the job of a conservation officer.

Lake Superior Marine Unit

CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) assisted the Two Harbors officer with a report of a homemade Viking ship being launched at McQuade Small Craft Harbor without life jackets aboard the boat. The Vikings had departed the water prior to the officers arriving.

District 9 – Brainerd area

CO Karl Hadrits (Crosby) reports confiscating and removing illegally abandoned fish houses from area lakes that were left out after the statutory deadline. The owners of the fish houses face multiple charges and restitution for removal costs.

CO Amber Ladd (McGregor) completed a couple of cases in which fish houses were left on the ice past the deadline. She also investigated two separate cases in which anglers were fishing with a combination license under fraudulent information. Only a legally married couple may angle with a combination license.

District 10 – Mille Lacs area

CO Dustie Speldrich (Willow River) received complaints about ATVs being operated on state forest snowmobile trails and rutting them up. ATVs are allowed on groomed trails within the state forest only.

CO Dan Starr (Onamia) reports that a wolf sighting was investigated in Sherburne County, and an injured eagle got a ride from concerned citizens to the Raptor Center. Starr checked a group of crappie fishermen and found one of them was possibly going into labor, but she could not ride the ATV back to the landing. She indicated it was past her due date, but that she wanted to catch some crappies before the baby arrived.

CO Bret Grundmeier (Hinckley) reports time was spent assisting farmers who had wolves hanging around cattle and calves. One wolf depredation investigation confirmed a site where multiple calves had been killed by wolves.

District 11 – St. Cloud area

CO Joyce Kuske (Little Falls) continued an investigation of dogs chasing deer. The dog owners were found to leave the dogs loose and home alone all day while they were at work.

CO Frank Rezac (St. Cloud) reports checking ice fishermen, following up on litter-on-ice issues, and investigating a dogs-chasing-deer complaint. A fish overlimit case also was investigated.

CO Keith Bertram (Long Prairie) spent time working a coyote-hunting complaint area. For the second time this winter, Bertram cited this particular group for transporting loaded guns.

District 12 – Princeton area

CO Angela Londgren (Cambridge) gave a presentation for a career day at Princeton High School . The CO also checked anglers and took complaints about injured animals and ice shelters being unattended overnight.

CO Mike Krauel (Milaca) spent time following up on a big-game case. Krauel also attended a TIP banquet and met with local outdoor enthusiasts to discuss the various aspects of the TIP program. Krauel would like to say thank you to all of the TIP volunteers for their incredible work and dedication!

CO Rick Reller (Buffalo) reports an injured trumpeter swan was captured and taken to the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center.

CO Trent Seamans (Big Lake) spent the week checking anglers, patrolling for ATVs, and responding to miscellaneous wildlife-related complaints. Enforcement action was taken for targeting smallmouth bass during the closed season, allowing a juvenile without a helmet to operate an ATV, and failing to display ATV registration.

District 13 – West Metro area

CO James Fogarty (Prior Lake) assisted the Scott County Sheriff’s Office on Prior Lake with an ATV that broke through the ice. The driver was able to exit the water after his machine sank to the bottom. The driver was lucky to be alive, as he was completely submerged and easily could have been trapped under the ice. A local tow agency located the ATV and removed it from the water. Fogarty also inspected aeration permits on Scott County lakes. One aerator had no warning signs advising of thin ice. The permittee stated he took the signs down because he was afraid to lose them when the ice melted. Fogarty advised him to place the signs back on the ice and attach some type of float to the signs. Fogarty also was called to assist the St. Paul Police Department with what was believed to be a trailer full of deer carcasses. Fogarty arrived to find the trailer had contained slaughtered pigs of a large, white breed. Fogarty talked to the people butchering the hogs; no deer were located.

District 14 – East Metro area

CO Vuthy Pril (ELCOP) spoke at a firearms safety class in Rosemount. He also investigated a complaint about possible small-game violations, worked ice anglers on area lakes, and responded to calls received.

CO Joe Kulhanek (Hastings) investigated a complaint about a swan being shot, and with help from a neighboring officer, the CO reports charges are pending.

District 15 – Marshall area

CO Andrew Dirks (Worthington) received a complaint about illegal snow goose hunting. After completing the investigation, enforcement action was taken for a license violation.

CO Arnaud Kpachavi (Benson) checked anglers and worked recreational vehicle activity. The officer also spoke at a firearms safety class and checked lakes to make sure fish houses were removed.

District 16 – New Ulm area

CO Shane Vernier (Willmar) spent time working area lakes for angling activity. He also worked trapping and continued with commercial inspections.

CO Dustin Miller (Windom) worked the Wall of Shame at a TIP event near Foley and presented on the success of the TIP program and the Division of Enforcement. Aeration inspections were completed throughout the week.

District 17 – Mankato area

CO Jeremy Henke (Albert Lea) worked angling enforcement and responded to trespass complaints. Numerous anglers where contacted this week with no angling licenses.

CO Corey Wiebusch (Mankato) continued to check ice conditions and accesses for ice shelters. Coyote hunters were checked and continue to use what snow is left to their advantage.

CO Brent Ihnen (Waseca) spent the week patrolling for fishing and ATVing activity. Additional time was spent patrolling area lakes and public water accesses for litter violations.

District 18 – Rochester area

CO Kylan Hill (Zumbrota) reports contacting multiple cross-country skiers utilizing the Cannon Valley Trail one last time before putting the skis away for the year. Only one skier without a ski pass was contacted. However, Hill encountered multiple people in possession of marijuana and other drug paraphernalia. The CO was watching late-season ice anglers on a remote road when a couple pulled up to him on an ATV. As he was conversing with them, it became apparent the driver of the ATV had been consuming alcoholic beverages. After field sobriety testing, the driver was placed under arrest for DUI.

CO Brittany Hauser (Red Wing) spent the week checking area fishermen on the Mississippi River near Lock and Dam 3. Many anglers were contacted while fishing in the fish refuge below the roller gates and within the restricted zone. All anglers contacted were reminded that for the months of March and April, no fishing is allowed within 300 feet downstream of the roller gates.

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