Minnesota Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – May 7, 2021
District 1 – Baudette area
CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked turkey hunters and pike anglers. Enforcement action was taken in Marshall County for an untagged turkey that was being transported. On the Warroad River, enforcement action was taken for fishing without a license, fishing for northern pike and walleyes out of season, and angling with an extra line from a kayak.
CO Marc Johnson (Warroad) primarily worked sturgeon-angling activity on the Rainy River and ATVing enforcement. In addition, time was spent assisting local law enforcement agencies, preparing equipment for use on Lake of the Woods, and speaking at a firearms safety class in Warroad.
CO Corey Sura (Baudette) checked anglers targeting northern pike on Zippel Bay, anglers on Upper Red Lake targeting crappies, and Rainy River anglers looking to bag a sturgeon during the first “keep” season of the year. Sura also completed commercial minnow dealer inspections for two separate groups trapping shiners on Upper Red Lake and investigated a trapping violation.
CO Jeremy Woinarowicz (Thief River Falls) responded to numerous nuisance-bear complaints, assisted Pennington County and the Minnesota State Patrol with calls for service, and monitored area turkey-hunting activity.
CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck) reports monitoring spring fish spawning-run activity and waters closed to angling, and checking anglers on special-regulation lakes. He also investigated a report of two eagles that appeared to have been shot. Regas asks anyone with information on the two bald eagles to please call him or the TIP line.
District 2 – Bemidji area
CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports spring fishing activity is picking up as the weather warms and panfish begin to move into the shallows. Anglers are reminded that species that have a closed season may not be targeted, even for catch and release. TIPs were taken about potential illegal angling activity. Vinton and CO Anderson worked a case of ongoing damage to a public water access.
CO Angie Warren (Mahnomen) worked angling and boating activity. People are reminded to do an equipment check to make sure all safety equipment is onboard before venturing out on the water. Leeching activity also was worked. A complaint about tiling in a wetland was received and investigated.
District 3 – Fergus Falls area
CO Daniel Baumbarger (Glenwood) reports enforcement efforts for the past week focused on checking anglers, boaters, and ATV operators. He also monitored for AIS-law compliance. Additional time was spent checking turkey hunters and teaching an ATV safety class.
CO Hanna Wood (Wheaton) focused the past week’s enforcement efforts on angling and recreational vehicles. She also assisted local law enforcement in locating a suicidal female, and with an ATV complaint.
CO Brian Holt (Osakis) worked angling and recreational vehicle activity throughout the past week. Time was also spent monitoring bowfishing and turkey hunting. Holt followed up on a complaint involving the Wetlands Conservation Act and checked beaver trapping.
CO Shane Osborne (Evansville) checked anglers, boaters, and ATV riders. A wetland-draining complaint was received and investigated.
CO Mitch Lawler (Alexandria) monitored panfish-fishing activity on station lakes throughout the past week. A fire smoke plume was spotted from a distance and, after locating the landowner, it was learned that the field brush area was being burned off without a permit during burning restrictions. Enforcement action was taken.
District 4 – Walker area
CO Jordan Anderson (Wadena) spent much time over the past week on bowfishing and sucker-spearing enforcement. All recreational vehicle owners are reminded to check registration before venturing out.
CO Michael Cross (Lake George) fielded numerous phone calls and took multiple reports from people. Trap tampering and dumping of illegally taken wild animals were investigated.
CO Calie Kunst (Remer) spent time working ATVing and sportfishing enforcement. Enforcement action was taken for multiple violations, including expired ATV registration, failure to display valid registration, operating an ATV without headlights, and operating in the road right of way. Follow up on deer-hunting cases was worked.
District 5 – Eveleth area
CO Curtis Simonson (International Falls) reports working the Rainy River throughout the past week, checking sturgeon anglers. He also monitored beaver-trapping activity. Simonson also reports becoming a part-time photographer this past week. While approaching a boat to check a couple of sturgeon anglers, the anglers doubled up on two nice sturgeon. Both fish were landed and some photos were taken of both of them before the fish were released.
CO Shane Zavodnik (Virginia) spent time following up on cases from the previous week, which led to the arrest of an angler who had a felony warrant. The CO also responded to a wanton-waste complaint. The individual admitted he was wrong for leaving several rabbits and a grouse lay to waste outside. Aside from the wanton-waste violation, the person also was in violation for taking a doe in a bucks-only zone, failing to validate and attach his deer tag, and failing to register the deer.
CO Duke Broughten (Aurora) spent the past week monitoring fishing, ATVing, and trapping activity. Broughten investigated a complaint about people working in public waters without a permit.
District 6 – Two Harbors area
CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Grand Marais) spent the past week checking steelhead anglers along the North Shore of Lake Superior. He responded to nuisance-animal calls and followed up on past investigations.
CO Mary Manning (Hovland) reports checking a good number of ATV operators and a couple of OHM riders. Compliance was very good. Manning also checked anglers on Lake Superior tributaries and took a few angling questions.
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked sucker spearing, checked anglers, patrolled state parks, and worked burning and ATVing enforcement. One individual encountered was angling on a trout lake (closed season) while angling privileges were revoked, resulting in a citation for those violations. If anyone has information as to the identity of the male who speared a muskie in Tower on April 24, please call Bermel or the TIP line.
CO Kylan Hill (Tofte) reports a steelhead angler was arrested after Hill contacted the person who was carrying a handgun while his blood-alcohol concentration was .04 or more.
CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked smelting and Lake Superior stream trout activity. A reminder to boaters to check watercraft for all required safety equipment.
District 7 – Grand Rapids area
CO Vinny Brown (Northome) monitored angling, trapping, and ATVing activity. With dry conditions, several fires have been reported and were responded to. An arrest was made involving an individual operating a side-by-side ATV while under the influence of alcohol.
CO Sarah Grell (Grand Rapids) spent time checking anglers and focusing on boating and ATVing activity. She also worked AIS activity.
District 8 – Duluth area
CO Andy Schmidt (Duluth) spent the past week working North Shore angling activity, smelting, and the fish run. ATV-related complaints of use on closed trails and trespassing continue as the weather improves. Schmidt assisted Fond Du Lac Wildlife Services with an injured-pelican recovery in the St. Louis River. He also worked invasive species enforcement at Lake Superior accesses, spent time in Jay Cooke State Park, and assisted with the State Patrol Academy Water Survival Course.
CO Kipp Duncan (Duluth) spent time on the North Shore working shore fishing and the spring fish run. Area rivers are still busy with many people attempting to catch steelhead.
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) assisted with teaching an ATV safety class in Moose Lake. Time also was spent investigating wolf-depredation complaints where cattle and chickens were allegedly being taken by wolves. K9 training continues with a new K9 partner in St. Paul.
Lake Superior Marine Unit
CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) helped co-instruct the division’s water survival course for the current State Patrol academy and followed up with U.S. Coast Guard crews on upcoming work details on the Duluth-Superior Harbor and St. Louis River.
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers and ATV riders. Reports of protected steelhead being kept and ATVers operating in rivers continue to come in.
District 9 – Brainerd area
CO Chelsey Best (Crosslake) worked fishing, turkey hunting, trapping, burning, and ATVing activity this past week. Assistance was provided for illegal burning cases.
CO Eric Sullivan (Brainerd) worked area lakes and ATV trails. Sullivan also assisted with an OHM crash with injuries in the Foothills State Forest.
CO Scott Fitzgerald (CCSRA) reports checking the state recreation area for illegal vehicle and ATVing activity. Time was spent checking the closed mine pits for illegal fishing activity, with several enforcement actions for fishing in a closed trout lake for other species. Assistance was given to park staff with a camper not paying and violating other campground rules. Time was spent looking into who spray painted graffiti at one of the SRA parking areas.
District 10 – Mille Lacs area
CO Gregory Verkuilen (Garrison) monitored invasive species enforcement related to boats and docks because a lot of gear was getting put in the lakes for the first time this year. Burning permits were checked as warm and dry weather increased the fire danger. Beaver trappers are making use of the open water but have also generated incidental otter kills.
CO Victoria Griffith (Isle) monitored angling, AIS compliance, and ATV activity in the Isle and surrounding areas. Several calls were fielded regarding youth operation of ATVs. Griffith also spent time investigating a trespass complaint.
CO Ashley Whiteoak (Malmo) spent time patrolling the area for fishing, boating, trapping, and ATVing activity. Enforcement action was taken for trailering a boat with the plug in. She also followed up on a trapping complaint and a call about a fishing violation.
CO Dustie Speldrich (Willow River) investigated a public waters violation. The property owner altered the shoreline and may have impacted wetlands. Speldrich investigated multiple illegal off-highway motorcycle trails in the General Andrews State Forest. ATV operators were found in the water at the newly constructed Willow River Dam. They were issued citations.
CO Dan Starr (Onamia) worked ATV, boating, fishing, and turkey-hunting activities. Assistance was given to other law enforcement personnel for an individual who was at a public access causing alarm to anglers trying to use the access. Drugs played a large role in the individual’s extremely odd behavior.
CO Bret Grundmeier (Hinckley) patrolled area lakes and rivers that were busy with boaters and anglers. Grundmeier found a few anglers, out for their first fishing trip of the season, who had forgotten to purchase new fishing licenses. Other efforts included responding to reports of fires that were allowed to burn out of control.
CO Mikeena Mattson (Wealthwood) checked various anglers and recreators this past week. Mattson also responded to a report of a water emergency. The person involved was found alive.
CO Ben Karon (Pine City) spent time this past week checking anglers and boaters along the St. Croix River. Time was spent patrolling on ATV. Littering problems continue to be an issue near the St. Croix River.
District 11 – St. Cloud area
CO Tou Vang (Pierz) assisted with a commercial game farm violation, monitored ATVing activity, and checked anglers and turkey hunters.
CO Todd VanderWeyst (Paynesville) took calls concerning overlimits and taking fish out of season. He also assisted neighboring officers and spoke at an ATV safety training class to discuss laws and ethics.
CO Chad Thesing (Albany) worked a hot crappie bite, which resulted in several citations for overlimits and no fishing licenses. Two calls about turkey hunters shooting two turkeys with one shot were handled. Assistance was provided to the sheriff’s office regarding a stranded boater and a fatal motorcycle accident.
CO Adam Seifermann (St. Cloud) reports focusing enforcement efforts on anglers and turkey hunters. He also investigated several wetland-related violations.
District 12 – Princeton area
CO Nathan Benkofske (Milaca) reports checking anglers and enforcing ATV laws. A case was investigated originating from a TIP to a Nebraska CO about Minnesota hunters traveling there to hunt turkeys. State forest lands were patrolled, and assistance was given to the Sherburne County Sheriff’s Office with a hit-and-run suspect who fled in Zimmerman.
CO Trent Seamans (Big Lake) patrolled for anglers and turkey hunters. Additional time was spent handling wildlife-related complaints.
CO Mike Krauel (Mora) spent the past week checking anglers and working on follow-up from deer-dumping complaints. Krauel also spent time working on garbage-burning complaints and on equipment maintenance.
District 13 – West Metro area
CO Vang Lee (ELCOP) worked anglers and boaters on metro-area lakes and rivers. He took calls about animal-related complaints in Carver and Hennepin counties. Violations encountered this past week included fishing without an angling license, taking largemouth bass in a closed season, fishing on a designated trout pond in a closed season, and an overlimit of crappies.
CO Arnaud Kpachavi (Mound) focused on angling and boating enforcement during the past week. Enforcement action was taken for angling, boating, and registration violations.
CO Mike Lerchen (Bloomington) spent time checking anglers and recreational boaters. Lerchen also followed up on various wildlife-related calls.
District 14 – East Metro area
CO Scott Arntzen (Forest Lake) reports working a busy border-water opener on the St. Croix River. He also spent time checking turkey hunters, doing AIS enforcement, and dealing with nuisance-animal complaints.
CO Tony Salzer (Ham Lake) patrolled Anoka and Washington counties for angling activity. Salzer received several calls with questions regarding operation of class I and II ATVs on roads. Please check the current off-highway vehicle regulations booklet on the DNR website for specific regulations. Check your local ordinances as well.
CO Joe Kulhanek (Hastings) spent a busy weekend on the water for the St. Croix River opener. He also patrolled areas for ongoing off-road vehicle complaints.
CO Ryan Hanna (White Bear Lake) received a couple of complaints and questions about orphaned wild animals. People are reminded that if they find newborn wild animals, they should leave them alone.
District 15 – Marshall area
CO Stephen Westby (Madison) worked area lakes for shore anglers with more people out fishing. Enforcement action was taken for no Minnesota fishing license, no fishing license in possession, and no youth helmet on an ATV rider under 18.
CO Jim Robinson (Slayton) spent the past week working waterway issues and checking anglers. Reports of early walleye/northern pike anglers are being investigated. Two ATV accidents were reported in Pipestone County.
CO Luke Gutzwiller (Redwood Falls) spent time this past week working angling activity. The laws and ethics portion of a firearms safety class was taught in Belview and Redwood Falls. A K9 demo was given at Redwood Falls High School.
District 16 – New Ulm area
CO Cassie Block (Willmar) spent time this past week working angling activity on area lakes. She fielded various questions relating to angling and watercraft registration. Block also spent time monitoring ATVing and turkey-hunting activity.
CO Brett Wiltrout (Hutchinson) spent time this past week following up with a wanton-waste investigation involving trapping. Additional time included ATVing and sportfishing enforcement.
CO Thor Nelson (New Ulm) received calls pertaining to taking game fish during the closed season, turkey-hunting violations, and questions about boating and fishing laws.
CO Mike Gruhlke (Jackson) rescued an eaglet from a downed nest. It has been transported to the Raptor Center.
District 17 – Mankato area
CO Chris Howe (St. Peter) checked anglers, boaters, ATV operators, and AIS activity this past week. Some bowfishers were generating complaints because of operating too close to shore anglers.
CO Meng Moua (Spring Valley) focused on turkey hunting and angling activities. The warmer weather brought out more canoe and kayak activities. Moua also spent time responding to nuisance-animal and trespass calls.
CO Tyler Lusignan (Faribault) spent time checking boaters and working ATV enforcement. Multiple violations were detected.
CO Chad Davis (Owatonna) checked anglers, boaters, turkey hunters, and ATV operators during the past week. Davis monitored AIS activity.
District 18 – Rochester area
CO Brittany Hauser (Red Wing) spent the past week patrolling for area turkey-hunting and fishing activity. Time was also spent assisting the Goodhue County Sheriff’s Office with various calls. Two talks were given at ATV safety courses.
CO Tom Hemker (Winona) reports turkey hunting has seemed to have slowed down with fewer hunters out and fewer reports of success. Hemker spent time working sturgeon fishing on the Rainy River and checked many anglers and fish.
CO Joel Heyn (Plainview) worked mainly anglers and turkey hunters during the past week. Turkey hunters checked were not having as much success as they did during the earlier seasons.
CO Annette Kyllo (Rochester) reports angling activity is increasing in the area with water temperatures rising. Violations encountered this past week included angling without a license, targeting bass and northern pike out of season, illegal-length walleyes on Minnesota/Wisconsin border waters, and burning without a burning permit.
CO Mitch Boyum (Rushford) received multiple reports about people trespassing while looking for cabbage rocks. Folks are reminded that permission is needed for this activity and landowners are very frustrated. Trout anglers have been doing well and morel mushroom hunters have started their search. A reminder that permission is needed when on private property.