Minnesota Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – May 22, 2020
District 1 – Baudette area
CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked anglers on the Roseau River and Lake of the Woods. A barred owl was rescued from the Roseau River. It had become entangled in fishing line that was attached to a snagged lure in a tree. The wet, hypothermic owl was untangled, dried off, warmed up, and released to the wild the next day.
CO Marc Johnson (Warroad) worked angling activity, ATVing enforcement, and patrolled local state parks, forests, and public accesses. Violations encountered included an overlimit of walleyes, no angling license in possession, failure to stop an ATV at a public roadway crossing, and various boating safety equipment and registration issues.
CO Tony Elwell (Thief River Falls) reports a possible wolf depredation was investigated. Boaters and anglers are reminded that all watercraft need to have at least one Coast Guard-approved personal flotation device for each person on board.
CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck) reports time was spent patrolling area trails monitoring ORV/ATV activity, investigating a TIP report about a bear that was shot out of season in the Bemidji area, and a report about an incidentally caught otter as the spring beaver trapping season came to a close.
District 2 – Bemidji area
CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports checking anglers and patrolling for ATVs and OHMs after a couple of calls were received about OHVers operating in ditches south of U.S. Highway 10. AIS inspections were conducted at area public accesses.
CO Angie Warren (Mahnomen) spent time on angling and boating activity on area lakes. Leeching activity was monitored.
CO Bill Landmark (Pelican Rapids) spent the week monitoring angling and boating activity in the Pelican Rapids station. Complaints continue to come in regarding bowfishing activity on area lakes with the chief complaint being noise and the lights waking property owners up. Bowfishers are reminded to respect the property owners and stay more than 150 feet away from residences.
District 3 – Fergus Falls area
CO Daniel Baumbarger (Glenwood) reports enforcement efforts for the week were concentrated on checking anglers, boaters, and monitoring AIS compliance. Additional time was spent checking turkey hunters and investigating public waters and wetland violations.
CO Troy Richards (Fergus Falls) reports more fishing activity was observed over the second weekend. A reminder that it is also illegal to harvest bait from infested waters unless permitted.
CO Brian Holt (Osakis) monitored boating safety and fishing activity throughout the last week. Complaints were received regarding bowfishers illegally dumping their fish and an illegal fire.
CO Tricia Plautz (Henning) continues to work fish overlimit and double-tripping complaints. Plautz also prepared for a court trial on a trespass case.
CO Mitch Lawler (Alexandria) spent lots of time on the water this week, working anglers on station lakes. Expired watercraft registration seems to be a problem as boaters continually blame the virus, but after doing some checking, they find out it can be renewed online. A shore angler helped another out by netting his nice 20-inch walleye, but after speaking with Lawler, was cited for possessing marijuana and paraphernalia. Additionally, a wetland-filling complaint was investigated and found to be a violation.
District 4 – Walker area
CO Jordan Anderson (Wadena) reports nuisance-beaver and -bear complaints were received, and a deer caught in a cemetery gate was released.
CO Randy Posner (Staples) reports assisting a boater who was having mechanical trouble on Fishtrap Lake. The boat owner left his radio on, and that drained his battery and then he could not start the boat motor. Posner also received a complaint about bowfishers dumping rough fish in the Pillsbury Forest near Rock Lake.
CO Calie Kunst (Remer) spent time working fishing enforcement. Multiple anglers were found fishing without licenses. Kunst wants to remind people to be sure to buy one prior to spending a day on the lake fishing. Enforcement action was taken for failure to have ATV safety and failure to display valid registration on boats and ATVs.
CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) followed up on reports about an angler fishing muskies out of season, a crappie-overlimit complaint, and a nuisance-bear complaint. Assistance was provided in response to a horseback-riding accident in the Paul Bunyan State Forest.
CO Jacque Hughes (Longville) received multiple calls about fish being dumped along roads and accesses. Enforcement action was taken for keeping largemouth bass out of season.
District 5 – Eveleth area
CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls) reports beaver-trapping issues were handled, along with burning during a fire ban. People are reminded that a burning permit is needed to burn, and restrictions are in place so only variance permits are being issued.
CO John Slatinski IV (Ray) monitored the end of the beaver-trapping season and fielded calls and concerns about nuisance beaver activity. Slatinski also heard about and responded to complaints about unpermitted open burning.
CO Shane Zavodnik (Cook) continued to follow up with individuals concerning violations found during the spring trapping season and also checked anglers on Lake Vermilion.
CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked anglering, boating, ATVing, state park, and invasive species enforcement. He worked a wetland draining complaint, a second walleye-carcass-dumping complaint in as many weeks, and taught a wildlife-identification class. So far this year, nearly all folks observed paddling kayaks have not had PFDs on board. Kayaks are watercraft, which makes PFDs a must.
District 6 – Two Harbors area
CO Sean Williams (Ely) continued to focus on angling activity. Although fishing pressure was down from the opening weekend, a good number of people were checked.
CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Grand Marais) spent the week working anglers, ATV riders, and invasive species enforcement. He conducted multiple patrols in the BWCAW.
CO Kylan Hill (Tofte) reports contacting anglers, canoers, recreational boaters, and a host of ATV operators throughout the week. Boating safety and ATV violations were nonexistent, as operators did a great job in making sure they followed the laws.
CO Mary Manning (Hovland) assisted with a grass fire in Hovland. Thanks to a quick response from fire crews, the homeowner only lost some brush, not any buildings. The CO also responded to a call from a couple stuck on an area snowmobile trail. The couple drove almost a mile on an old forest road before burying their all-wheel-drive vehicle. The multiple use road designation meant no citation – just a high tow bill.
District 7 – Grand Rapids area
CO Jayson Hansen (Bigfork) checked anglers, worked small game, ATV, and AIS enforcement, and patrolled state parks. Numerous game and fish questions were answered.
CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) worked TIP complaints, patrolled area state parks, checked anglers, and monitored OHV activity. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license, no navigation lights after sunset, overlimit of crappies, illegal-length walleyes, and operating an unregistered ATV.
CO Jimmy Van Asch (Pengilly) reports working angling, ATV, boating, and AIS enforcement throughout the surrounding areas. Enforcement action was taken for possession of an overlimit of crappies, angling without a license, no angling license in possession, operating a watercraft without required navigation lights, insufficient number of PFDs, and failure to display valid watercraft registration.
District 8 – Duluth area
CO Jacob Willis (Brookston) participated in the Peace Officer Memorial ceremony in Duluth as part of the Honor Guard detail.
CO Andy Schmidt (Duluth) reports bears are active, so please remove bird/wildlife feeders and stow garbage in a secure location. COs in the area handled two separate calls at the same time of fledgling great horned owls out of nests. The Raptor Center recommended attempting to nest the fledglings in man-made nests.
CO Kipp Duncan (Duluth) continued to work fishing and boating enforcement on area lakes and rivers. Time also was spent following up on wolf-depredation complaints, and ATVing activity was also worked throughout the week.
CO Jeff Humphrey (Cromwell) spent time working angling, boating, and AIS enforcement Humphrey also conducted patrols in area state parks, wildlife management areas, and at public water accesses. TIP calls were worked involving trespassing and angling in a closed area.
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) assisted with K9 training in the metro area. Time was also spent checking shore anglers and patrolling area state parks. A report of someone recklessly discharging a firearm in an area state forest was looked in to. The suspect was already gone when officers arrived. A call about someone finding a car-hit armadillo south of Wrenshall was looked into and verified. A young gentleman located the deceased animal in the ditch of Highway 23 while he was checking the mail. He wanted to keep the armadillo to have it mounted and was given permission to do so.
Lake Superior Marine Unit
CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) worked Lake Superior in the Duluth-Knife River waters during the week. Olson also worked state park enforcement during the weekend and reported the parks were busy with hikers and bikers.
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers and boaters over the week. Miller reports questions were answered about migratory boundaries on the tributaries, as well as details on identifying trout and salmon.
District 9 – Brainerd area
CO Bob Mlynar (Aitkin) reports a TIP call led to charges for an illegal-length northern pike.
CO Eric Sullivan (Pequot Lakes) work area lakes, invasive species regulation compliance, and ATVing activity. Sullivan also took call about a bear that was damaging a residential garage.
CO Amber Ladd (McGregor) spent a lot of time on the water working anglers this week. She also encountered high ATV and OHM activity with some violations. She handled a call about a loon that was found dead on the lakeshore wrapped in fishing line. It’s a reminder to anglers to ensure your line does not get left in the water.
CO Chelsey Best (Crosslake) dealt with ATV and wetland issues this week. A Wetland Conservation Act investigation began in which an individual decided to create a road through a swamp on his new property. Several loads of fill and hours of skid loader work will be rendered pointless when the landowner will most likely have to return the wetland to its original state – after paying fines and permit costs.
District 10 – Mille Lacs area
CO Gregory Verkuilen (Garrison) worked lake activity including boats lacking PFDs, registrations, and fire extinguishers.
CO Dustie Speldrich (Willow River) responded to public waters and Wetland Conservation Act violations. She also checked anglers and boaters on area lakes.
CO Dan Starr (Onamia) reports a neighbor dispute over beaver activity was mediated. Starr also assisted county deputies with a case involving an individual who shot a gun to scare off a bear in his yard, only to send a bullet through the wall of a neighboring house.
CO Bret Grundmeier (Hinckley) took reports about black bear being seen out roaming for food and dealt with the first nuisance bear complaints of the spring. Violations dealt with included fishing without a license, boating without life jackets, and placing fill into public waters.
CO Ben Karon (Pine City) spent time checking anglers and boaters. People continue to keep fish out of season. The Million Dollar Bridge along the Matthew Lourey Snowmobile trail was set on fire this weekend. The bridge is closed for the time being to any travel until its safety and integrity can be determined. If you have any information about this incident, please contact the Pine County Sheriff’s Office or the DNR.
District 11 – St. Cloud area
CO Caleb Silgjord (Sauk Centre) spent time during the week checking anglers and boaters on area lakes. Invasive species inspections were conducted at area access sites. Assistance was provided to the Melrose Police Department with a suicidal individual.
CO Todd VanderWeyst (Paynesville) assisted DNR Wildlife with planting the new addition to the late CO Norm Dahlman WMA.
CO Chad Thesing (Albany) worked anglers, boaters, turkey hunters, and aquatic invasive species enforcement. Enforcement action was taken for transporting invasive species, possessing bass out of season, possession of marijuana, and various boating equipment violations.
CO Adam Seifermann (St. Cloud) reports an ongoing investigation related to migratory waterfowl.
District 12 – Princeton area
CO Angela Londgren (Cambridge) followed up on a TIP about possible suspects in an earlier grouse poaching/shooting from motor vehicle case that was caught on camera. The suspect stated, “I know why you’re here,” confessed, and gave up his accomplice. Both men were charged.
CO Tony Musatov (Sauk Rapids) worked anglers and investigated a game-violation complaint. A trespass call was investigated.
CO Mike Krauel (Mora) spent a busy week checking anglers. Krauel also spent time investigating illegal burning. Enforcement action was taken for burning prohibited materials, possession of marijuana, possession of an illegal-length northern pike, angling with an extra line, and angling without a license.
CO Trent Seamans (Big Lake) reports a bear and her three cubs were caught on a doorbell camera sprinting across a front lawn in Elk River. The bears decided to wreak havoc on the bird feeders in the backyard later that night. Seamans also responded to a call about a duck caught in some fishing line and struggling in a pond. Seamans entered the shallow pond via kayak and approached the duck, which was no longer alive. No fishing line was found, but a large snapping turtle was seen munching on the duck and was likely the cause of death.
District 13 – West Metro area
CO Alexander Birdsall (Waconia) reports that while on patrol a motorist stopped upon seeing Birdsall and exited his vehicle with a cooler in hand. The motorist stated he had picked up some ducklings along the side of the highway that were attempting to cross the roadway. The ducklings were released back in the wetlands across the highway from where they were picked up. It is a good reminder to leave wildlife alone.
CO Tim Maass (Osseo) worked anglers and boaters on area lakes and rivers. Maass also continued to investigate several complaints about carp being illegally dumped.
CO Vang Lee (ELCOP) responded to a TIP complaint in Minneapolis regarding an unattended line with a catfish on it. The fish was released.
CO Arnaud Kpachavi (Mound) followed up on a report about multiple dead geese on a small pond.
District 14 – East Metro area
CO Scott Arntzen (Forest Lake) spent the week checking watercraft users and anglers. Arntzen also patrolled wildlife management areas, worked several TIP calls, and investigated a wetland complaint.
CO Ryan Hanna (White Bear Lake) has been investigating multiple rough fish-dumping complaints. It is illegal and an eyesore to dump rough fish at public accesses and along roadways.
District 15 – Marshall area
CO Andrew Dirks (Worthington) spent time throughout the week patrolling Blue Mounds State Park, ATV riders, recreational boaters, and anglers.
CO Craig Miska (Ortonville) monitored AIS, angling, ATVing, boating, and turkey-hunting activity during the week.
CO Matt Loftness (Marshall) spent the week working fishing, boating, AIS, state park, and ATVing enforcement. Goslings are becoming a common sight by area sloughs.
District 16 – New Ulm area
CO Nicholas Klehr (Litchfield) worked on public water access issues during the week along with trespassing, littering, and wetland issues. Time also was spent at accesses working AIS enforcement and checking anglers.
CO Thor Nelson (New Ulm) received questions about minnow trapping, game refuge rules, and fishing regulations. He spent time working angling, boating, invasive species, state park, and ATVing enforcement activities.
CO Dustin Miller (Windom) is asking for the public’s assistance with several fires that have been intentionally set at WMA locations near the city of Comfrey. Miller and CO Nelson are continuing to work the case and wish to let the suspects know they are putting their local volunteer fire department and other landowners property at risk. Anyone with information is encouraged to contact either officer.
District 17 – Mankato area
CO Chad Davis (Owatonna) checked anglers, boaters, AIS activity, and ATV operators during the week. Davis also patrolled wildlife management areas, state parks, and waterfowl production areas.
CO Jeremy Henke (Albert Lea) worked angling, AIS, and trespass enforcement this week. Henke reminds people that dumping trash or leaving items on public lands is illegal. Calls regarding deer fawns continue to come in. Please do not touch the animals.
District 18 – Rochester area
CO Tyler Ramaker (La Crescent) spent the week checking anglers and ATV operators. Two recent alcohol-related ATV crashes that resulted in serious injuries are reminders of the danger of mixing alcohol and riding.
CO Kevin Prodzinski (Wabasha) reports a protected waters complaint was investigated and several nuisance animal-related calls were handled.
CO Annette Kyllo (Rochester) encountered several people this week transporting their watercraft with the plug in. As a reminder, all plugs need to be removed when transporting boats to and from your destination.
CO Derek Schneider (Zumbrota) reports that Lake Zumbro has been busy with boaters, and some anglers are finding crappies. Schneider also spent time checking anglers on the Mississippi River. A bowfishing complaint was handled in Pine Island. ATVing activity has really picked up in the area, and several juvenile passengers were found without helmets.