Wisconsin Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – Dec. 27, 2019


Spooner Team / November

Warden Jesse Ashton, of Polk County, stopped a vehicle operator on the McKenzie Creek Wildlife Area and found the two occupants were road-hunting with a cocked, loaded crossbow. When Ashton approached the vehicle the passenger had the cocked crossbow loaded with the bolt, and the driver was smoking marijuana. 

Warden Ashton was responding to a late-night shining complaint near Pipe Lake when he observed a vehicle driving slowly with the passenger shining a flashlight out the passenger side of the vehicle after 10 p.m. When Ashton attempted to stop the vehicle the driver attempted to flee but quickly crashed his vehicle into the ditch. The driver was in possession of a loaded .270 rifle and was arrested for five felony warrants, operating while revoked, bail jumping and felon in possession of a firearm. Enforcement action for shining deer while in possession of a loaded firearm was referred to Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission.

Wardens Dustin Gabrielson, of Burnett County, and Jesse Ashton followed up on an investigation of a landowner shooting deer from his buildings. When wardens arrived, the property owner was hunting out of his pole shed with a crossbow over an illegal bait pile. Also, he did not have any valid deer harvest authorizations. The wardens confirmed the man had been hunting after dark with the aid of a light for the past two years. Multiple charges are pending.

Wardens Ashton and Pete Carlson were patrolling near Turtle Lake when they made contact with road hunters. The individuals were in possession of a loaded .32 rifle and had open intoxicants inside the vehicle. The passenger was uncooperative and highly intoxicated.

Warden Ashton received information that a homeowner was hunting over bait in a ban area while shooting multiple deer off his 1-acre parcel. Wardens Ashton and Pete Carlson contacted the man and determined he had shot two deer over an illegally baited area. They also determined the man called another person and used that person’s harvest authorization to register the deer. Enforcement action was taken against both parties.

Wardens Ashton and Carlson were walking into the gas station in Cushing when Ashton saw two occupants wearing blaze orange in their car while parked at the gas pumps. Ashton saw a rifle sticking up in the front seat. Upon contact with the occupants, Ashton discovered the juvenile rear seat passenger had a loaded .30/30 rifle and had been drinking intoxicants. The passenger said they stopped to get more beer so they could continue road hunting.

Warden Dustin Gabrielson received a complaint about baiting near Coomer. Wardens Gabrielson and Chris Spaight investigated the complaint and learned the landowner had placed 200 pounds of corn on a cornfield near his hunting blind. Enforcement action, along with the prohibition of hunting near the baited stand for 10 days after the bait was cleaned up, was taken for the violation.

Wardens Gabrielson and Ashton followed up on a baiting complaint near Danbury and learned the suspect was illegally baiting deer while also illegally used his 10-year-old son’s and his wife’s archery buck “tags” to register two bucks he had shot.

Wardens Gabrielson and Ashton investigated a complaint of nighttime deer poaching near Danbury. The wardens learned the person shot deer at night with the aid of artificial light, was illegally baiting deer, and killed a deer after legal hours. Criminal charges are pending.

Wardens Pete Carlson and Pete Wetzel were conducting deer shining enforcement when they observed vehicle occupants shining after 10 p.m. The vehicle occupants were found to be in possession of a bow. The operator and passenger also had open intoxicants.

Warden Carlson contacted an individual who was hunting over illegal bait in Barron County. The individual was found to have placed approximately 100 pounds of bait, left a stand overnight where prohibited, cut down a tree on private property and failed to wear 50% blaze orange, as required.

Warden Carlson contacted a man he saw exit a vehicle on the roadway and walk over a hill with a rifle during the gun deer season while not wearing any blaze orange. The man said he saw a deer run across the road and was attempting to hunt the deer by walking over the hill. Action was taken for failure to wear blaze orange while hunting.

Wardens Pete Carlson, Jesse Ashton and Mike Melgaard contacted a man who stopped his truck on the road, exited his truck, loaded his rifle and shot at a deer decoy from the middle of the road.

Wardens Jon Hagen, of Washburn County, and Josh Loining, of Barron County, followed up on an illegal baiting complaint and contacted the person using illegal bait. The man originally said he had not placed any bait after finding out there was a baiting ban. The wardens eventually ascertained the hunter had placed bait with full knowledge of the baiting ban.

Warden Hagen followed up on an illegal baiting complaint. There is a bait ban in Washburn County. Hagen discovered baits were also over the old two-gallon limit. Hagen met with three people on the property. They appeared to be unaware of the bating ban in Washburn County, and they were aware of the old two-gallon bait limit. 

Wardens Jon Hagen and Steve Sanidas, of Waukesha County, patrolled for hunting activity in Washburn County on the Friday prior to the gun season. They contacted a group of three goose hunters. One of the hunters had not bought any licenses for waterfowl hunting. Enforcement action was taken, along with the issuance of several warnings.

Wardens Hagen and Sanidas followed up on a complaint of gun-deer hunting over illegal bait and hunting without a license during the opener. They contacted the suspect and determined the man had hunted and harvested deer in 2018 without a valid hunting license, and also that he was hunting over illegal bait this year.

Wardens Hagen and Sanidas contacted two adult hunters and one juvenile hunter with an antlerless deer in Washburn County. One of the adults originally said the juvenile had shot the antlerless deer. The adult hunters did not possess any antlerless deer “tags” for Washburn County. The wardens discovered the adult hunter actually shot the antlerless deer and had planned to use the young hunter’s junior antlerless permit even though the young hunter did not even see the deer harvested. The adult knew it was illegal to group hunt on a junior antlerless permit. 

Wardens Hagen and Sanidas contacted a person on county land after shooting hours on opening day of the gun season. Upon contact, the person exited his vehicle with a cocked and loaded crossbow. Hagen also smelled the strong odor of marijuana. The person admitted to throwing marijuana out of his vehicle upon seeing the wardens, and the marijuana was not located. Enforcement action was taken for the loaded crossbow in the vehicle.

Warden Joshua Loining, of Barron County, contacted a person deer hunting from a treestand about 20 yards from a corn pile. The hunter had placed the stand and also a trail camera near the bait pile.

Warden Loining contacted a landowner about a baited area near a treestand on his property. The landowner admitted to placing 100 pounds of corn out just before the gun season even though he knew it was illegal.

Wardens Loining and Melgaard, while assisting the Dunn County Sheriff’s Department with a domestic dispute, stopped an associated suspect pickup truck per the request of a deputy. The driver had two loaded rifles in his truck.

Wardens Chris Spaight and Dustin Gabrielson, both of Burnett County, made contact with a group of hunters following a complaint of illegal baiting. It was found they were hunting over a large pile of pumpkins that contained over 25 pumpkins for each hunter, and some of the pumpkins were filled with corn. Enforcement action was taken

Wardens Spaight and Gabrielson contacted another group of hunters following a complaint of illegal baiting. Burnett County is under a baiting ban. The wardens found several stands on the property with bait nearby, and there were two juvenile hunters hunting and not within sight and sound of an adult guardian.

Warden Spaight was working an illegal night hunting complaint when he was contacted by area law officers who had conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle. There was a cocked, uncased crossbow in the front seat of the vehicle. Spaight responded.

Wardens Spaight and Gabrielson saw a person in the passenger seat of a vehicle who was known by both wardens to have a felony warrant for his arrest. The wardens followed the vehicle for a short distance as they contacted the sheriff’s department to confirm the warrant. The wardens stopped the vehicle and arrested the suspect passenger. 

Park Falls Team / November

Warden Aaron Koshatka, of Hayward, contacted a hunter with a freshly harvested antlerless deer in the bed of his truck. The hunter did not have a valid antlerless harvest permit for the animal. Koshatka also learned the hunter failed to register another antlerlesss deer he had harvested on opening weekend.

Wardens Koshatka and Scott Bowe, of Ladysmith, contacted two hunters who were not wearing legal blaze orange. One hunter was wearing green pants, a camouflage jacket and a blaze orange hat. The other was wearing blaze orange pants and hat with a camouflage jacket.

Warden Joe Paul, of Phillips, overheard a radio call from the Price County Sherriff’s Department regarding an arrest of a person who had felony warrants. The person was dressed in full blaze orange and was carrying a rifle when he was arrested. Paul investigated the matter further and determined the person had been hunting deer with a companion for two days. Paul determined the person also had placed and hunted over more than the legal limit of bait. The person did not have a hunting license and his hunting privileges were revoked. Charges will be forwarded to the Price County district attorney for hunting deer without a license and citations will be issued for hunting with too much bait and engaging in hunting activity while revoked.

Wardens Paul and Nick Hefter received a tip that a deer had been shot from a county road. They determined three individuals had shot a deer from the vehicle on the property of another. The shot was nearly in line with another hunter who was hunting on the property. The individuals tried to retrieve the deer and got spooked by a vehicle on the property. The individuals left and returned in a different vehicle where they were met by Paul and Hefter.

Wardens Paul and Hefter received a complaint of automatic gravity feeders on private property. The responsible parties were located. Three gravity feeders and a 6-point buck were seized. 

Wardens Thomas Heisler, of Winter, Steven Pyfferoen, of Bruce, and DNR ranger Joe Kraetke, of the Flambeau River State Forest, assisted the Sawyer County Sheriff’s Department with a search for a lost hunter. With GPS coordinates provided from the lost hunter’s cell phone, Heisler, Pyfferoen and Kraetke were able to locate the hunter.

Warden Bowe contacted an individual on state land during the archery season who said he was tracking a deer his father had shot the night before. After ending his initial contact, Bowe continued to investigate and found a stand, a blood trail and crossbow at the stand. The individual was hunting without crossbow authorization and had wounded a buck just before Bowe contacted him.

Antigo Team / November

Wardens Brad Dahlquist, of Crandon, and Jeffrey Nieling, of High Cliff State Park, apprehended four individuals’ near Laona illegally shining deer after hours and while in possession of firearms and bow with arrow.

Wardens Dahlquist and Nieling took enforcement action against two individuals near Wabeno who were illegally shining deer after hours and while in possession of two firearms. 

Wardens Dahlquist and Bryan Harrenstein investigated an individual who was found to have harvested two bucks in November and failed to property register either one, as required. It was also found this individual had illegally hunted over bait to harvest one of the bucks.  

Wardens Dahlquist and Nieling cited several individuals for placing and/or hunting over illegal bait. They also seized four gravity and mechanical feeders illegally used for hunting deer.

Warden Tim Otto observed the driver of a vehicle stopping adjacent to a field that commonly has deer. Otto stopped the vehicle and found two people in possession of a 7mm rifle with a suppressor, night-vision scope and sub-sonic ammunition. They also had a handheld FLIR unit. They claimed they were coyote hunting. Criminal charges regarding the illegal night hunting are pending.

Wardens Tim Otto and Ben Herzfeldt assisted the Langlade County Sheriff’s Department with an investigation regarding a convicted felon hunting during the gun season with a rifle. The suspect was observed by his probation agent removing a rifle from a vehicle prior to hunting. The deputies were inexperienced at approaching and locating deer hunters, so they enlisted the help of the wardens. Otto, Herzfeldt and a deputy located the suspect sitting against a tree in blaze orange clothing, but he did not have any firearms. After a brief investigation by the deputy, a firearm was located. The subject was arrested for being a felon in possession of a firearm. 

Warden Pat Novesky, of Tomahawk, took enforcement action against four people shining deer at 1 a.m. while in possession of an uncased, cocked, and loaded crossbow.

Warden Novesky received a complaint of an illegal bait on managed forest land. Two individuals had used a chainsaw to create a trail to illegally drive an ATV onto the property to place 300 pounds of corn for the deer season.

Ashland Team / November

Warden Phil Brown, of Iron River, responded to a call of a boat or car in Ruth Lake. Brown observed a paddle boat adrift and, while trying to locate the owners, saw a second boat with two occupants capsized. Brown used a nearby boat to row out to the individuals – one was swimming toward shore with a boat cushion and the other was hanging onto the boat. Quick action and response by Brown and other first responders led to the successful rescue of both individuals.

Warden Amie Egstad, of Bayfield, was contacted by a landowner who found a deer stand and bait pile on his property on the afternoon of the opening day of gun season. Egstad responded just before closing hours and found a teenage boy hunting in a stand over about four gallons of corn. The father was hunting neighboring county land. The father did not realize his son was on private property and admitted to dumping a half of bag of corn at his son’s stand. Enforcement action was taken for the bait and the property owner spoke with the hunter.

Warden Dave Sanda, of Gordon, investigated information on a possible loan/borrow of deer “tags.” Sanda identified two deer harvested, then registered on someone else’s harvest authorization.

Warden Adam Stennett, of Brule, contacted a hunter and found that in the 2018 season the hunter had harvested an antlerless deer in Douglas County using a Bayfield County authorization. Stennett also found the hunter did not have any proof of hunting approvals on him while he was hunting. 

Wardens Rick Peters, of Ashland, and Stevie Macy checked an out-of-state hunter who was hunting deer without a license on private land on opening day. He told the wardens he did not have a lot of time to hunt and wanted to save the money on a license.

Woodruff Team / November

Warden Chris Bartelt, of Lake Tomahawk, contacted a crossbow hunter sitting in his stand after legal shooting hours. The person was hunting over an illegally baited site he had been cited for approximately a week earlier. The hunter was also found to have hunted under an incorrect authorization, harvested an antlerless deer under an incorrect authorization, provided false information, and failed to mark equipment left overnight on state lands. Enforcement actions were taken.

Warden Matt Meade, of Mercer, contacted an Iron County landowner who was placing more than 100 pounds of bait to keep deer near his stand for the upcoming gun season. 

Warden Meade contacted a person during the gun season as he hunted without a valid license and any blaze orange clothing, had placed too much bait, and operated an unregistered ATV. The person also had failed to register his buck kill from last year.

Warden Meade contacted a hunter who harvested a buck without a license and then took the deer home to be processed.

Warden Tim Price investigated a complaint where a buck was illegally shot on private property. Price found that the buck was shot with a crossbow from the road while the buck stood on private land where the hunter did not have permission to hunt. 

Warden Rich Thole, of Boulder Junction, contacted a group of deer hunters on a rural Vilas County road. As Thole exited his vehicle he observed the driver reach down into the passenger side of the truck. The hunters were traveling with a loaded rifle inside the vehicle and the driver unloaded it when he saw Thole.

Warden Thole located a ground blind near Manitowish Waters with illegal bait nearby and evidence a deer had recently been harvested from the blind. Thole located the hunter and learned he had shot a buck over the illegal bait on opening day. The hunter then had a second person, who was not with the hunter at the time of harvest, register the deer so the hunter could keep hunting.

Warden Thole contacted a person near Boulder Junction who was hunting deer over bait in his yard. The person had a sign along his driveway that read: “Warning, baiting deer is illegal. This corn pile is intended for squirrels, chipmunks, and other such critters. Any deer found eating this corn will be shot!” Enforcement actions were taken.

Categories: Cuffs & Collars

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