Wisconsin Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – February 25, 2022

WEST-CENTRAL REGION

Lower Chippewa Team/December

Wardens Clayton Peters, of Chippewa County, and Kevin Christorf, of Clark County, assisted warden Bryan Lockman, of Portage County, with a case involving shooting at deer from the road. They found individuals shot several times from the road and vehicle at deer on private land without permission, transported loaded firearms in the vehicle, hunted without licenses, and didn’t wear blaze orange.

Wardens Peters, Christorf and Adam Hanna, of Clark County, assisted first responders in Stanley and Neillsville, and throughout Clark County, following a Dec. 15 tornado. 

Warden Richard Maki assisted the Chippewa County Sheriff’s Department with a felony stop on a stolen vehicle. Maki helped the  deputy secure the suspects and the vehicle without incident.

Lower Chippewa Team/January

Warden Peters assisted warden Kurt Haas, of Taylor County, with a shine-and-shoot deer case in western Taylor County. Numerous deer had been shot in fields, possibly from the road, at night. Some deer were left behind and others taken. Evidence led to the responsible person, who was found in illegal possession of bucks and does. Violations included: shooting after hours, loaded firearms in vehicles, shooting from a vehicle, use of light, and registration and game possession violations. 

Wardens Peters and Maki assisted warden Bob Jumbeck, of Buffalo County, with a late-shot complaint from gun deer season that led them to a property with an absentee landowner. Violations included illegal baiting, shooting after hours, and unregistered deer. 

Wardens Christorf and Jake Bolks, of Eau Claire, followed up on a case of hunting deer without license near Willard. An individual hunted deer without a license and harvested a buck during the antlerless-only season.

Warden Christorf contacted a fisherman on Lake Arbutus who was fishing with too many lines and had two unregistered deer.

Wardens Bolks and Christorf completed a case of multiple suspects who illegally shot a 12-point buck during the holiday hunt in Eau Claire County. The individuals shot the buck knowing a relative had a Class A disabled license and could register the buck.

Warden Bolks was patrolling on Half Moon Lake in Eau Claire when he observed a young fisherman fishing without a license. During the conversation with the youth and parents, Bolks learned the youth had also shot a buck during the 2021 archery season, but did not have an archery license or hunter safety in 2021. Bolks also discovered other licensing and mentorship violations in 2020. Bolks took action against the parents.

Warden Bolks was patrolling on Lake Altoona when he observed a rattle reel line placed in the water in an unoccupied ice house. Bolks called the owner, who claimed he forgot the line in the water when he left.

Lower St. Croix Team/December

Warden Madison Bryan, of St. Croix County, responded with St. Croix County deputies to a train/delivery truck crash. Bryan provided first aid to the truck driver, and assisted with the investigation and traffic control.

Warden Jaime McDermid, of Dunn County, investigated illegal deer baiting and found one of two men shot two bucks on the same day of the archery season and then used the other’s harvest authorization to register the second buck. Both bucks were shot over large amounts of illegal bait.

Warden Joe McMahon, of Pierce County, followed up on a call of a buck shot during the antlerless-only season. McMahon contacted the hunter who thought the buck season was open for bow/crossbow.

Warden McMahon contacted a bobcat hunter for a fur registration. The hunter failed to buy a license before harvesting the bobcat and purchased a license after the fact.

Warden J.J. Redemann, of Dunn County, got a late-shooting call during the antlerless-only hunt and found two Minnesota individuals had shot a doe after hours. One of the men didn’t have a license. They also didn’t register the deer and didn’t have correct approvals to harvest the deer on public land.

Warden Redemann took action against an ice fisherman who denied fishing despite being observed doing so. Another angler said he bought a license, but left it in the vehicle. Both eventually admitted to lying because they were fishing without licenses.

Wardens Redemann and McDermid followed up on an illegal goose hunting call near Prescott. They learned the individual hunted geese out of season and without a goose permit. The hunter also trespassed. The Pierce County Sheriff’s Department handled the trespass violation.

Wardens Redemann and McDermid followed up on a Dunn County traffic stop in which a crossbow and spotlight were seen in the vehicle. The wardens uncovered multiple violations of shining deer while in possession of a crossbow and failure to register deer.

Warden Redemann reported the adjudication of a 2019 case in which a Dunn County resident hunted turkeys and deer without licenses while being revoked. The man was concerned with being caught, so he hunted with a licensed hunter who agreed to hold the gun for him. The accomplice then would hand the gun to the revoked hunter when they were close enough to harvest game. The individual poached a turkey in this manner and the associate registered it to legitimize the illegal harvest. A Dunn County Circuit Court judge ordered the revoked hunter and accomplice to pay fines, confiscated the hunter’s equipment, and revoked the hunter’s DNR licenses for three additional years. 

Lower St. Croix Team/January

Warden Kyle Kosin, of Pierce County, was on patrol when he took action against a person who had a loaded firearm in the vehicle.

Warden Redemann was on foot patrol in the Muddy Creek Wildlife Area when he found three-wheeler tracks well onto the property. He found an individual drove the ATV past a “foot travel only sign” and around the closed gate into the wildlife area. Treestands were left up on the property.

Warden Redemann took action on a bobcat trapper who placed illegal cable restraint traps set to allow entanglement – and within 25 feet of sight-exposed bait. A citation was issued for illegally set traps.

Wardens Redemann and McDermid were investigating an illegal deer hunting call when they located a loaded rifle in the individual’s UTV. The individual had also been placing illegal feed.

Warden Paul Sickman, of St. Croix County, investigated a case involving a suspicious deer registration. Sickman determined the adult allowed a juvenile relative to shoot a buck without a license. When the adult went to register the buck using his own tag, the adult found out he also forgot to buy a license.

Black River Falls Team/December

Warden Patrick Seybert, of Necedah, investigated a deer hunter for violations based on statements received from a concerned citizen. Seybert found multiple bait sites on the hunter’s property near Tomah. Several deer were identified to have been shot over the bait during the past two years.

Warden Matt Modjeski, of Sparta, received a call regarding a three-wheeler, with no rear license plate and no taillight, being operated on ATV routes in the village of Oakdale. Modjeski informed the responsible person how to come into compliance. Modjeski also explained that failure to do so would result in enforcement actions/citations. The next morning, that same person committed the same violations. 

Black River Falls Team/January

Warden Michael Weber, of Mauston, got a call from the Juneau County Sheriff’s Department regarding a town of Necedah landowner who had located a blood spot with foot tracks on his property. Weber found a non-resident individual had illegally shot an 8-point buck with a crossbow over an area baited with corn on a bordering property and trespassed to retrieve the buck.

Warden Weber contacted a nonresident individual who had shot a buck in the town of Armenia during the gun-deer season and did not have a license, as required.

Warden Weber investigated a call of a person in Monroe County who reportedly shot a buck during the antlerless-only holiday hunt. Weber found the person shot a buck with a bow during the holiday hunt and then falsified the registration to show the buck was shot after that hunt.

Warden Weber was on patrol at Castle Rock Flowage when he came upon an individual in possession of three walleyes under the size limit of 15 inches.

Warden Weber observed an individual ice fishing on Castle Rock Flowage with three tip-ups close to an ice shanty near the Juneau County Park. Weber found the individual also was illegally fishing with two additional jig poles inside the shanty.

Mississippi River Team/December

While working waterfowl enforcement, warden Meghan Jensen, of Trempealeau, heard a boat coming toward the landing about 42 minutes after sunset, but she could not see the boat or any navigation lights. When the boat got closer to the landing the operator momentarily turned on a flashlight. Jensen found there were no lights installed on the boat. The operator was also found to have not completed a boater’s safety course.

Warden Dale Hochhausen, of Onalaska, followed up on a person who inquired on how to register a buck a relative had harvested. When customer service staff informed the caller there was an antlerless-only hunt taking place, the caller stated he wasn’t sure the relative had shot a buck because he was not hunting at the time of harvest. Hochhausen contacted the caller (an adult) and determined the adult caller had dropped off a related minor child to bowhunt without adult supervision. The youth had missed the buck that was about 60 yards away when the shot was taken. The youth also wasn’t wearing blaze orange during the firearm season. Enforcement action was taken against the adult.

Wardens Matt Groppi, of La Crosse, and Tyler Strelow investigated a call of a bowhunter shooting two bucks during the bow season. The archery hunter had two others register deer the he had killed. The wardens also found the bowhunter did not register a turkey killed earlier in the year.

Wardens Groppi and Strelow investigated a call of several deer carcasses littered near a public road. They found three antlerless deer and one buck were not registered from the group. Two group members then littered the carcasses and other debris after butchering the deer.

Warden Groppi followed up on a call of a person who shot a deer from a county road in La Crosse County. The person said he hit the deer with a vehicle and did not shoot it, even though there was a hole in the deer’s head. The man then admitted to shooting it from the road and trespassing on private land to retrieve.

Mississippi River Team/January

Wardens Hochhausen and Lore Vang contacted an angler found ice fishing without a license on Lake Onalaska. They also found the individual had five warrants for arrest and was in possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. Enforcement action was taken, and the individual was turned over to the town of Campbell Police Department.

Warden Jensen investigated a call of an individual shooting a buck on the last day of the antlerless-only holiday hunt. The hunter had shot a buck with a crossbow, failed to register the deer, failed to wear blaze clothing while hunting, littered, and drove with a suspended driver’s license.

Wardens Groppi and Luke Polzin followed up on a case of a hunter who shot a deer without a license on opening day, then purchased a license, and registered the deer after he killed it. The hunter said the wardens should just issue a warning because it occurred on private land.

Warden Bob Jumbeck, of Alma, assisted a stranded ice fisherman in the backwaters of the Mississippi River after the angler’s return route was broken up by a passing airboat. Jumbeck responded with an airboat and returned the fisherman to land. 

Wisconsin River Team/December

Warden Erika Leigh, of Marshfield, responded to a call of a buck that had been shot from the road during the antlerless hunt. Leigh determined the deer was shot with a muzzleloader. She tracked down the person who shot the buck from the road.

Warden Kyle Ziembo, of Stevens Point, contacted a hunter who had shot a buck that died on public property. Ziembo found tracks indicating the buck was shot near an area baited with corn and mineral. Action was taken for illegal baiting.

Warden Bryan Lockman, of Stevens Point, contacted a hunter who failed to register a deer. He found the hunter who was supposed to register the deer, under group deer hunting rules, had not purchased a license. 

Wardens Lockman, Peters and Christorf contacted two individuals who shot 28 times from a vehicle and from a roadway at deer on private land during the antlerless hunt. The wardens also found the pair drove onto private land to look for the deer. They were cited for the hunting violations. The sheriff’s department issued trespass citations.

Warden Lockman contacted a person who placed illegal bait in a gravity feeder and shot a deer over the bait. The deer then ran onto a neighbor’s
property. The person trespassed to recover the deer from the neighbor’s land. Enforcement action was taken for the illegal bait and the sheriff’s department cited the person for the trespassing.

NORTHERN REGION

Park Falls Team/December

While patrolling for snowmobile speed violations in Price County, warden Thomas  Heisler, Jr., stopped a snowmobiler for speeding. The rider said he was trying to find an oil retailer to help a member of his group. The operator said the friend’s machine was very low on oil. Heisler gave a gallon of his snowmobile oil to the operator to help his friend. The operator returned with the remaining oil and was thankful for the assist.

Warden Heisler contacted an individual for failure to have an ATV trail pass. The operator was not aware of how to use a cell phone to get a pass. Heisler helped the individual use the “Go Wild” process to get his pass before Heisler departed.

Spooner Team/December

Warden Adam Stennett, of Spooner, investigated 2020 deer registration inconsistencies. Stennett identified an adult who allowed a minor relative to harvest a buck during the 2020 youth deer season when the youth did not have a valid license. Stennett also found the adult allowed another minor relative to harvest an antlerless deer during the 2021 archery season and failed to register the deer from 2021 within the required timeframe.

Warden Stennett investigated a person who harvested a buck deer during the antlerless-only season. Stennett found the person’s plan was to wait to register the deer until the archery season opened to mask the harvest timeframe that made this buck an illegal harvest.

Spooner Team/January

Wardens Jon Hagen, of Spooner, and Evan Fox followed up on a complaint of an illegally set conibear trap. They saw the trap was close to the road and more than halfway out of the water, making it an illegally set conibear. They contacted the individual responsible for the trap.

Warden Jon Hagen and a Washburn County Sheriff’s Department deputy responded to a report of two lost hikers on the Ice Age Trail in Washburn County. The hikers had called 911 after becoming confused on the trail, and had separated. One hiker was more than 70 years old and informed the dispatcher he was out of energy and could not walk much further. Hagen located the hiker just off the edge of a snowmobile trail, and used his snowmobile to reunite the hikers. Neither party needed medical attention.

Warden Joshua Loining, of Rice Lake, followed up on multiple calls concerning snowmobile riders operating on closed trails in Barron County. Loining took action against those found on the closed trails.

Warden Loining saw a person dragging a harvested coyote out of a field near Prairie Farm. Loining contacted the person at his truck where he located a loaded 12-gauge shotgun in the truck.

Warden Jesse Ashton, of Luck, took action against snowmobile operators traveling on the Gandy Dancer Trail near Luck without trail passes, lacking snowmobile registrations and safety trainings, as well as operating with excessive/prohibited exhaust noise.

Warden Stennett stopped a snowmobiler for careless operation. The operator slid to a stop and fishtailed to the intersections as Stennett approached the intersections. The rider showed registration for Wisconsin that expired in 2018 and Minnesota registration that expired in 2020. The operator did not have a trail pass or safety certification. The same operator had been cited for the same violations the week before by warden Dustin Gabrielson, of Webster. 

Woodruff Team/January

Warden Timothy Ebert, of Minocqua, was observing anglers on Lake Tomahawk when he contacted one late in the evening and found him to be in possession of four walleyes. The daily walleye bag limit on Lake Tomahawk is zero as multiple stakeholders work to improve the overall population.

Warden Matt Meade, of Boulder Junction, spoke with a person regarding a littering complaint in Iron County. Meade also found the person had shot an antlerless deer after the close of the archery season with his crossbow and had made no attempt to register it. Multiple enforcement actions were taken for harvesting a deer out of season.

Antigo Team/January

Warden Kelly Crotty, of Florence, took action against an individual who admitted to knowingly hunt illegally over an automatic feeder full of corn.

SOUTH-CENTRAL REGION

Madison Team/January

Wardens Matthew Koshollek, of Dane County, and Alex Brooks, of Jefferson County, investigated a person in Jefferson who was advertising venison chorizo for sale. Koshollek found the person was using ground-up deer meat. The person had sold one package in November but stopped selling it after being notified it was illegal to sell. A warning was issued; the ad was removed.

Warden Koshollek completed a trapping investigation on private land. A trapper was found to be trespassing while also placing traps for muskrats and beaver. The trapper was contacted by a Dane County Sheriff’s Department deputy while setting traps. The trapper told the deputy he was setting the traps in proper locations. Wardens Koshollek and Jake Donar then visited the property and located four water sets and removed them from the landowner’s property. Koshollek and Brooks then spoke to the trapper at his house. The trapper admitted to being dishonest with the deputy and was just happy to get his traps back. The trapper was issued a citation for ATV trespass and he was also directed to stay off private land without permission.

Warden Koshollek took enforcement action against a person who initially said he did not harvest a 12-point buck. However, the person’s acquaintances informed the warden he did harvest the buck and had the rack. Koshollek asked the man about it; he admitted a failure to register the buck.

Warden Nick King, of Green County, investigated illegal dumping on state land at Cadiz Springs State Park. King identified an individual who deposited several yards of waste into the park receptacle multiple times over the past month.

Warden Pete McCormick, of Poynette, responded to a concerned citizen’s complaint regarding a deer caught in a fence along a road. McCormick found the entangled deer as described and it was still alive. McCormick was able to free the deer from the fence, but the deer ended up succumbing from its injuries. McCormick then observed a large pile of corn placed near the driveway of an adjacent property about 40 yards from the road. During further investigation, McCormick revealed several more piles of corn and deer activity. Baiting/feeding are prohibited in the county.

Warden Pete McCormick responded to a citizen complaint concerning possible illegal deer hunting in Columbia County. He located a gut pile and trail to a bait pile. McCormick found multiple deer had been shot over the bait and located the responsible person.

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