Wisconsin Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – Nov. 29, 2019
Wardens Chris Spaight and Dustin Gabrielson, both of Burnett County, investigated a report of an illegally harvested turkey in October. They determined the suspect bought his license after he harvested the turkey. The hunter had also not registered the turkey, as required, and then did so after he was contacted by the wardens.
Wardens Spaight and Gabrielson investigated a complaint that some deer hunters in Burnett County did not register deer they harvested. The wardens also learned the hunters harvested antlerless deer in areas where they did not have authorizations to harvest antlerless deer. One deer was registered in an adjoining county, and one deer was never registered.
Warden Pete Carlson, of Polk County, arrived at the Frederic High School one day in October to give a presentation there when he saw a person operating an ATV in the high school parking lot. The operator was riding wheelies on the ATV, as well as operating in excess of 10 mph within 100 feet of a person. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Joshua Loining, of Barron County, contacted a hunter about illegal bait piles beneath his treestands. The hunter said he did not know there was a baiting ban in place. Loining located about 4 gallons of bait at three of the hunter’s stands.
Warden Loining contacted a man in October who had placed a gravity feeder out in front of his cabin. The man stated he did not know gravity feeders or feeding deer was illegal. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Jon Hagen, of Washburn County, assisted the Spooner Police Department with a camping trespass complaint in the middle of a wooded property just on the edge of the city of Spooner. Officers made contact with two individuals there who claimed to be homeless. One subject was arrested for possession of drug paraphernalia, and both were warned for trespassing.
Warden Hagen responded to a DNR hotline complaint of shooting waterfowl after hours. Hagen contacted three young hunters, who were honest and admitted to shooting after legal hours. Hagen warned the young hunters for the late shooting violations.
Warden Jesse Ashton, of Polk County, checked a couple of goose hunters near Amery and discovered several violations. Ashton found they had seven geese, whereas their individual bag limit was three geese. Ashton also determined that both hunters had hunted that morning in a different location and bagged additional geese (double-tripped). Ashton also noticed several corn cobs had been peeled, broke in half and spread amongst their decoys. Both hunters admitted to baiting waterfowl with corn. Other violations included no federal waterfowl stamp, a shotgun with no plug and capable of holding more than three shotshells, and possession of shotgun slugs. Enforcement action was taken, along with issuance of several warnings.
Warden Ashton contacted a hunter near the city of St. Croix Falls who was archery hunting over an area that had been baited with corn. The subject admitted he knew it was illegal to bait in Polk County and decided to risk it.
Warden Ashton contacted a man goose hunting near St. Croix Falls. The hunter said he shot a diver duck that morning, which he still had in the back of his truck. The hunter did not harvest a duck but had instead shot a pied-billed grebe, which is illegal to shoot. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Ashton, in cooperation with the Polk County Sportsman Club, organized an annual gun deer hunt for hunters with disabilities on October. Ashton hosted a gun sight-in day and meal at the Balsam Lake Rod and Gun Club for all participants. Area wardens sportsmen’s club members guided the disabled hunters during their hunts. Approximately 14 hunters participated and multiple deer were harvested.
Wardens Matt Meade, of Mercer, and Robin Miller, of Hurley, contacted a grouse hunter in October who shot at a grouse from his ATV.
Warden Tim Price, of Eagle River, contacted a group of anglers at a boat landing in October. It was found that their fishing guide did not have a guide’s license, as required. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Price investigated a situation involving a dog caught in a foot-hold trap in October. The trapper was found to be trespassing on the land where the trap was set. The fairly new trapper did the right thing by agreeing to pay the pet owner’s vet bills that were about $300 and learned a valuable lesson about making sure to have permission before trapping.
Warden Rich Thole, of Boulder Junction, cited a waterfowl hunter for possessing a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle. The hunter shot two ducks near a boat landing and transported a loaded shotgun in his vehicle after doing so.
Wardens Chris Bartelt, of Lake Tomahawk, and Tim Ebert, of Minocqua, located a subject on Oneida County Forest lands who was harvesting balsam boughs without a permit. The person had a history of this type of activity. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Ebert contacted a group of four juvenile waterfowl hunters getting ready to leave a boat landing for their hunt. Three of the four did not have federal waterfowl stamps. The hunters were new to waterfowl hunting and unaware they also needed this stamp. Ebert allowed the hunters to buy their federal stamps on his computer so they could still go hunting.
Lower St. Croix Team
Wardens Isaac Kruse and Paul Sickman, both of St. Croix County, and Kyle Kosin and Brad Peterson, both of Pierce County, investigated a complaint of a single large-caliber gunshot heard near the end of shooting hours in St. Croix County. Their examination of a deer gut pile found nearby indicated a deer may have been shot with a rifle. No rifle deer season was occurring at the time. Kruse found a drag path, including blood and deer hair, that lead directly to a suspect’s backyard. After obtaining a search warrant, the wardens went to the suspect’s residence, where their investigation showed the suspect shot the 10-point buck with a .243 rifle and claimed he shot it with a crossbow. The wardens seized the buck’s head, meat and also the rifle used by the suspect. Enforcement action is pending.
Warden Kruse investigated a complaint of late duck hunting occurring on a waterfowl production area (WPA) near the boundary of Polk and St. Croix counties. Kruse located the hunters at the same WPA the following evening. Kruse observed one of the hunters shooting 10 minutes after legal shooting hours. Kruse contacted the three hunters at their vehicle. Two of the three hunters also did not have small game licenses, as required.
Wardens J.J. Redemann and Jaime McDermid, both of Dunn County, contacted a county-based taxidermist in October who was found to be operating an unlicensed taxidermy business since 2015. Several additional taxidermy violations were uncovered. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Redmann assisted with a deer hunt for disabled hunters in southern Dunn County. Xcel Energy staff have been gracious in setting up this annual event to provide a quality opportunity for a group of disabled hunters.
Warden Redemann contacted a man who was shining deer in a soybean field in southern Dunn County. Redemann found a cocked and uncased crossbow in the man’s truck, as well as a “deer slayer” 12-gauge shotgun. It is illegal to shine deer while possessing a gun or bow. Redemann also found a bag of corn in the bed of the truck. The corn was used to bait deer in Dunn County where there is currently a baiting ban. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Redemann worked with DNR environmental staff in October in reference to a Dunn County excavation company and a development company that failed to prevent significant erosion and sediment issues on a new construction site. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Redemann investigated a complaint in October of leaking paint cans, tires, and other garbage dumped next to a Dunn County road. Township employees identified the purchaser of the paint by checking purchase information stickers with the paint company. Redemann queried the purchaser name and found the property at the listed was for sale. Redemann then contacted the real estate agent, who explained their agency paid $100 to an individual who was supposed to haul the truck load of paint cans and other garbage to the proper disposal center. The suspect dumped all of the garbage next to the road to save money on proper disposal fees. The accomplice was also identified; enforcement action was taken.
Warden Brad Peterson received information about a man who harvested a mourning dove, but did not have a small game hunting license as required. The man told Peterson he shot a gray pigeon. However, the man had harvested a mourning dove. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Peterson assisted the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department with the search for a vehicle in the Mississippi River. Using specialized equipment, including side scan sonar and a Blue View, officers located a vehicle downstream of the Back Channel boat launch. A woman from Red Wing, Minn., had recently reported her vehicle stolen. However, it was learned she actually drove her car down the boat ramp into the river while she was intoxicated and believing she was still on the roadway. Efforts are being made to retrieve the car located in an area with 16 feet of water depth and very swift current. The water depth normally there at this time of year is about 4 feet to 5 feet.
Warden Kyle Kosin followed up on complaints of late deer shining near Plum City when he observed someone shining deer from their vehicle after 10 p.m. Kosin stopped the vehicle, and enforcement action was taken for the late shining violation.
Wisconsin River Team
Warden Paul Leezer, of Wausau, contacted field goose hunters after they had harvested geese. Enforcement action was taken for no small game license and no state waterfowl stamp.
Wardens Leezer and Bart Tucker investigated two turkey hunters who had harvested four turkeys, two of which were out of season, and did not register any of the turkeys harvested. Enforcement action was taken.
Wardens Tyler Flood, of Wausau, and Erika Taylor, of Marshfield, located a duck blind set up in a shallow open-water area with zero concealment. There were two individuals hunting and they stated they had been hunting there the last couple years when there was vegetation. While doing license checks, it was discovered that one of the hunters didn’t have any waterfowl approvals. Enforcement action was taken.
Wardens Flood and Josh Litvinoff, of Schofield, assisted the Wausau Police Department with a community canvas after an active shooter incident.
Warden Litvinoff gave a safety talk and question/answer session for employees at the Domtar Mill in Rothschild.
Warden Bryan Lockman participated in a wellness day at the Felker Brother business in Plover where he discussed various law changes and answered general questions from employees.
Warden Lockman gave a talk to the SPASH River Academy in Stevens Point where he discussed a career as a warden and other job opportunities in the DNR and private sector.
Warden Jon Scharbarth, of Stevens Point, assisted with a learn-to-hunt deer event at Standing Rocks Park. Four of the six hunters were successful in bagging their first deer.
Wardens Scharbarth and Annette Swanek stopped a vehicle in which the two occupants were shining after 10 p.m. in Portage County. They also had a cocked and loaded crossbow in the vehicle. Enforcement action is pending.
Warden Kyle Ziembo, of Wisconsin Rapids, stopped a UTV on the road because the operator and juvenile passenger were not wearing their seat belts, as required by law. The operator told Ziembo the seat belts did not work in the UTV, and when told they could not drive the UTV away without their seat belts on, the operator was able to easily put both seat belts on. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Ziembo received a call about a deer that was found dead under an apple tree in a yard. Ziembo found that the neighbor had shot the deer and it ran and died under the tree. Upon contact with the hunter, it was also discovered the deer was shot over bait in a no-bait county and after hours with the aid of a light. Enforcement action is being taken.
Warden Ziembo was invited to the natural resource classes at Lincoln High School to give an overview of the warden career. Ziembo also talked with students at Lincoln High School during their annual career day event about careers in natural resources.
The Wisconsin River warden team participated in law enforcement scenarios for UW-Stevens Point students enrolled in the conservation law enforcement theory and principles class.
Peshtigo Team Web Report
Warden Jake Cross, of Shawano County, concluded his joint investigation with wardens from the DNR’s investigative team, West-Central Region team and Stockbridge-Munsee tribal wardens. In total there were 10 state citations issued and eight tribal citations issued to three people for digging tribal ginseng, falsifying DNR records and selling the root as state-harvested ginseng. Total amount of citations was more than $15,000 in fines and multiple years of revocation.
Warden Paul Hartrick investigated a complaint in October of a deer carcass dumped in a ditch. Hartrick was able to identify a suspect and the investigation revealed that the man shot the deer with a .30-06 rifle without having a license during the 2019 archery deer season. The suspect was also in possession of illegal drugs and drug paraphernalia. Charges are being referred to the Oconto County district attorney.
Wardens Hartrick and Tim Werner, of Crivitz, investigated a complaint of an individual shooting a bear during the closed season. The investigation revealed the individual shot the bear while he was deer hunting on his property. The wardens seized the bear carcass and associated hunting equipment and the case will be referred to the Oconto County district attorney’s office for prosecution.
Lake Winnebago Team
Warden Michael Disher, of Chilton, observed two men who had just finished hunting pheasants on state land while on patrol in October. One hunter shot at a bird, but missed. Neither hunter had a small game hunting license, as required. Both hunters said they didn’t know they needed a small game license to hunt pheasants. While speaking with the hunters at their vehicle, a strong odor of marijuana was detected. Disher located 30 grams of marijuana and a digital drug scale. Enforcement action was taken for hunting without licenses, and criminal charges were referred for possession of illegal drugs and paraphernalia.
Warden Disher investigated illegal pheasant hunting activity on state lands in October. It was determined that three individuals went pheasant hunting on the Friday before the statewide pheasant season opener. One hunter shot a pheasant. Enforcement action was taken for hunting during the closed season.
Wardens Cara Kamke, of Appleton, and Zachary Seitz, of Shiocton, contacted an archery hunter on state land who smelt like the odor of marijuana. Marijuana was located in the hunters vehicle. Enforcement actions were taken.
Wardens Kamke and Lt. George Protogere, of Green Bay, contacted several small game hunters on public land who were not wearing blaze orange during the youth gun deer hunt. Enforcement action was taken.
Warden Jason Higgins, of Oshkosh, investigated a complaint of illegal bait on a property in Waushara County where it is a no-bait county. Higgins located a feeder and a salt block. Days later Higgins contacted the subject at another location on the property while hunting over a corn pile and another salt block. The subject admitted to placing the feeder and using it in years past as well as the other salt block. The subject admitted he knew it was illegal. Enforcement action was taken and the area was shut down to hunting for 10 days after the bait was cleaned up.
Several wardens from the Lake Winnebago Team and Waupaca Team participated in the sixth annual Run with Cops 5 km event at UW-Oshkosh. Wardens displayed a marked military UTV and a boat and answered questions regarding DNR regulations. Four wardens ran the event wearing their full-duty gear.
Warden Amanda Kretschmer, of Winneconne, was contacted by a Winneconne police officer who said a man was found to have fished with unattended fishing poles on the Wolf River piers. The man left the fishing poles unattended for at least 20 minutes while he went to a nearby resort. The man stated he was not aware you could not leave your fishing poles unattended. Enforcement action was taken.