Minnesota Outdoor News Cuffs & Collars – May 27, 2022
District 1 – Baudette area
CO Corey Sura (Baudette) worked on an ongoing wetlands violation and followed up on a burning complaint in which an individual had been burning during a ban as well as burning prohibited materials such as tires and shingles. Anglers were checked at area accesses.
CO Tony Elwell (Thief River Falls) monitored angling and boating activity this week, investigated a wolf depredation, and worked an aquatic invasive species detail. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license.
CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck) reports working angling and boating activities on special-regulation lakes and AIS compliance this past week. Time was spent handling nuisance-beaver and -bear complaints and monitoring seasonal trail closures.
CO Nicholas Prachar (Blackduck) worked with other COs on a suspected overlimit case and assisted with an AIS detail held in the areas of Lake of the Woods and Upper Red Lake.
District 2 – Bemidji area
CO Tom Hutchins (Crookston) reports attending a law enforcement memorial service with other agencies in Grand Forks. Time was spent investigating a suspected wolf-depredation complaint.
CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji) assisted the Bemidji Police Department with a search for a missing individual and worked details on Upper Red Lake.
CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports assisting CO Anderson with a kids fishing event with the Menahga School. Sixty kids were introduced to a few hours of fishing on a cold spring morning. TIP calls about anglers taking bass out of season and an injured eagle were handled.
CO Al Peterson (Osage) responded to two wetland-filling complaints and an aquatic vegetation die-off report, and checked anglers and boaters. He also assisted the Becker County Sheriff’s Office with an investigation.
CO Steve Chihak (Moorhead) assisted the Clay County Sheriff’s Office with locating and apprehending a suspect involved in a shooting in Fargo.
District 3 – Fergus Falls area
CO Andrew Goodman (Fergus Falls) focused primarily on angling and aquatic invasive species enforcement throughout the week. Additional time was spent investigating various illegal-dumping complaints.
CO Shane Osborne (Evansville) concentrated enforcement activity throughout the week on fishing, boating, AIS, and ATV enforcement. Water levels are up on area lakes and rivers. There are more objects floating around in area lakes. Please be careful when on the water this spring.
CO Mitch Lawler (Alexandria) spent the week investigating TIP complaints about fish overlimits and keeping bass out of season. Multiple citations were issued after interviewing suspects and seizing illegal fish. One boat was observed for a period of time after dark, anchored with two male occupants actively fishing. It took only a few moments before Lawler caught on to what was happening. One angler was fishing a jig pole while simultaneously watching a bobber he’d casted out. After Lawler ordered the boat to shore, he took enforcement action for angling with extra lines and no navigational lights illuminated.
CO Daniel Baumbarger (Glenwood) reports several complaints about people keeping bass out of season were investigated. Anglers are encouraged to pick up a free copy of the fishing synopsis and to read the regulations instead of depending on the internet as a source of information.
District 4 – Walker area
CO Jordan Anderson (Wadena) assisted with the return of “Hooked on Fishing, Not Drugs” event in Menahga.
CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) responded to a report about a dead wolf, which was found to be a car-kill. He separately investigated a calf depredation that likely was the result of a wolf attack. Calls about angler harassment and nuisance beavers were taken. Mathy also responded to an ATV accident that resulted in injury, where excessive speed was a factor.
CO Nick Baum (Park Rapids) took enforcement action on two off-highway motorcycle riders who were operating in the ditch of the public road. Baum wants to remind OHM operators they can operate only on designated trails and forest roads. He continues to investigate a turkey-hunting violation.
CO Jacque Hughes (Longville) had a baby fisher turned in; it was brought to a wildlife rehab center.
District 5 – Eveleth area
CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls) reports area lakes (Rainy, Kabetogama, Namakan, Crane, and Sandpoint) are at record-high flood levels and are expected to continue to rise for another week. People are reminded that a “no-wake” ordnance is in place within 300 feet of the shore. The wake and wash can cause significant property damage.
CO John Slatinski IV (Ray) reports most activity in the area has been affected by ongoing flooding. Although the rise has slowed in some areas, others are still expected to see additional increases for extended periods of time.
CO Troy Fondie (Orr) reports high water and flooding have greatly reduced boating and angling activity. Some access sites are underwater, as are campsites. Significant debris can be found in border lakes. Sandbagging efforts are ongoing. Those traveling north for Memorial Day weekend should call ahead to find the latest conditions on area lakes and access site availability due to the ongoing flood.
CO Marc Johnson (Hibbing) reports time was spent investigating complaints about a possible wetland/shoreline violation and trap tampering.
CO Duke Broughten (Aurora) spent the week monitoring fishing, boating, and ATVing activity. High water continues to limit lake access and has been creating many hazards on the water.
District 6 – Two Harbors area
CO Sean Williams (Ely) reports cold weather and wind dominated the week. Snow fell during the weekend but no accumulation was found.
CO Mary Manning (Hovland) checked shore anglers and steelhead anglers. Rain has eased, but many forest roads remained closed or badly damaged, and travelers are urged to check with local forestry offices or officers before venturing on remote roads and are advised to heed the “road closed” signs.
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) checked anglers on station lakes, worked a minnow-trapping case, and conducted an extended BWCAW patrol with CO Larson, focusing on trout lakes.
CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) reports water levels in the area remain high, making river fishing difficult on most streams. Spring closures are still on for many ATV trails, and recent storms have washed out culverts, making some county roads and Forest Service roads impassable.
District 7 – Grand Rapids area
CO Vinny Brown (Northome) conducted boat safety checks, checked anglers, and monitored ATVing activity. Wildlife-related calls were handled, including complaints about bears coming into yards, looking for food. People are reminded not to leave anything out that bears may see as a potential food source, including bird feeders. While Brown patrolled Lake Winnibigoshish, he checked a group of five anglers who had their five-person limit of walleyes but also were found in possession of additional walleyes, resulting in an overlimit. The fish were seized, and enforcement action was taken for possession of walleye overlimits.
CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) checked anglers, monitored OHVing activity, responded to nuisance-animal complaints, and taught an ATV safety class.
CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) reports enforcement action was taken for angling in a closed area, angling with extra lines, operating an unregistered watercraft and a couple of overlimit cases in which too many sunfish were possessed. As a reminder, if angling the Pokegama, Little and Big Jay Gould lakes chain, the sunfish limit is five daily.
CO Jimmy Van Asch (Pengilly) continued to focus enforcement efforts on angling, boating, AIS, and ATVing activities. Enforcement action was taken for angling with extra lines, illegal-length walleyes, illegal-length northern pike, no angling license in possession, and several boating violations.
District 8 – Duluth area
CO Jacob Willis (Brookston) fielded TIP calls regarding angling activity. Multiple regulatory calls were handled regarding border waters regulations. Willis also assisted the State Patrol in locating a drunk driver who had been reported via 911. That driver was arrested by MSP for driving while intoxicated.
CO Kipp Duncan (Duluth) continued to working fishing and boating enforcement on area lakes. Follow-up on trapping issues was dealt with during the week, and Duncan assisted with maritime security for the USS Minneapolis-St. Paul Navy ship that was moored in the Duluth Harbor all week.
CO Jeff Humphrey (Cromwell) responded to calls and complaints regarding trespassing, wolf depredation, off-highway vehicle use, and nuisance animals.
Lake Superior Marine Unit
CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) worked Lake Superior, checking anglers and boaters in the Duluth to Knife River area. He also took part in a special detail in the Duluth Harbor in relation to the visit and commissioning of the Navy vessel the USS Minneapolis-St. Paul.
District 9 – Brainerd area
CO Tony Flerlage (Crosby) checked anglers on area lakes and the Mississippi River. The high water of the river made fishing difficult. M
CO Jim Guida (Brainerd) reports assistance was given to a local elementary school requesting help in the instruction of ATV and boating regulations for their students. Seasonal beaver-control permits were issued to local government units, and an injured eagle was transported to the Garrison Animal Hospital.
CO Nate Benkofske (McGregor) reports a drunk driver was arrested in McGregor by Benkofske and the State Patrol after the driver nearly hit Benkofske’s squad in town.
CO Calie Kunst (Crosslake) spent time checking anglers and ATV riders throughout the week. Kunst checked a group of two ATV riders – both ATVs had the same registration sticker attached. When she questioned the owner about the registration, the owner stated he purchased registration for one of the ATVs and bought a copy of the registration for the second ATV. That way, he had to purchase registration for only one ATV. He was cited for multiple violations.
CO Andrew Dirks (CCSRA) spent time checking anglers, watercraft operators and ATV riders throughout the week.
District 10 – Mille Lacs area
CO Gregory Verkuilen (Garrison) monitored an ATV-trespassing area, assisted with security at the Duluth Harbor, and investigated reports of dead waterfowl.
CO Dustie Speldrich (Willow River) investigated a call regarding a turkey hunter self-reporting the taking of a hen. Enforcement action was taken for that violation. Another hunter was warned for failing to validate his turkey license. However, he did register it shortly after harvesting a jake.
CO Dan Starr (Onamia) worked fishing activity and the night ban regulations on Lake Mille Lacs. Assistance was given to local law enforcement with a drug-related traffic stop.
CO Bret Grundmeier (Hinckley) checked fishing activity, investigated complaints about wolf depredation of cattle, and took reports about missing docks and boats that floated away from shore due to high water.
CO Ben Karon (Pine City) spent time this week checking anglers. Boaters were checked for registration and safety equipment.
District 11 – St. Cloud area
CO Tou Vang (Pierz) checked anglers and assisted with local law enforcement and EMS on a call in which an elderly male was pinned and submerged in a creek for an extended time due to his ATV rolling into the creek.
CO Stephen Westby (Little Falls) continued working area lakes for angling and boating activity. Several ATVs were seen on the Soo Line Trail west of Highway 10 where they are not allowed. West of Highway 10 is for non-motorized travel only.
CO Todd VanderWeyst (Paynesville) worked bowfishing activity again this week with violations encountered including no fishing license, minor in possession of alcohol, no throwable flotation device, insufficient navigational lights, and no-wake violations.
CO Leah Kampa (Annandale) reports checking anglers and monitoring turkey hunters. Boating enforcement was conducted. A wildlife-possession permit was issued.
District 12 – Princeton area
CO Clint Fitzgerald (Buffalo) spent the week checking anglers and monitoring boating activity. Fitzgerald joined CO Arnaud Kpachavi for a special boating enforcement detail on Lake Minnetonka.
CO Ryan Hanna (Milaca) assisted the Isanti County Sheriff’s Office with an ATV safety field day. Hanna also took a ride on the Rum River to assess downed trees and accessibility.
CO Trent Seamans (Big Lake) focused patrols on angling and boating activity. Additional time was spent attending a youth fishing event and handling miscellaneous wildlife-related calls.
District 13 – West Metro area
CO Alexander Birdsall (Waconia) spent most of the past week focusing on ATV enforcement given a recent increase in ATV-related crashes locally. Several ATVers were stopped for right-of-way violations and for safety-related violations.
CO Mike Lerchen (Bloomington) patrolled metro lakes and rivers for angling activity. Lerchen also worked a hiring event for veterans. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license and angling with extra lines.
District 14 – East Metro area
CO Garrett Thomas (Eagan) spent time checking anglers at local lakes and a trout stream. Multiple anglers were cited for keeping bass during the catch-and-release season. Time also was spent assisting with a local kids fishing event, a veterans career fair, and speaking at a Special Olympics panel.
CO Scott Arntzen (Forest Lake) spent most of the week checking anglers and watercraft operators. He handled nuisance-animal calls and investigated several wetland violations where a cease and desist order was issued.
CO Tony Salzer (Ham Lake) patrolled Anoka County for angling and boating activity. He checked several anglers during the week and responded to a trespassing call. Water levels on the Mississippi and Rum rivers remain high and dangerous.
CO Chris Tetrault (Maplewood) spoke at an agriculture class at Humboldt High School in St. Paul. Anglers in the area were checked, and calls fielded from people with law-related questions. A fire investigation also came to a close.
CO Joe Kulhanek (Hastings) spent the week monitoring anglers in the area. He also performed targeted AIS enforcement at area landings. Enforcement action was taken for extra lines, license violations, and failure to remove the plug from a boat for transport.
District 15 – Marshall area
CO Derek Daniels (Lake Benton) spent the week working angling, boat and water safety, and invasive species enforcement. Training was attended in Mankato.
CO Luke Gutzwiller (Redwood Falls) spent time this past week working angling activity. K9 training was attended in the Brainerd area. Time was spent in Menahga, conducting a K9 demonstration for youth involved with a local fishing event. K9 Earl also responded to a call involving a game violation in which an evidence search was conducted.
CO Matt Loftness (Marshall) spent the week working fishing, boating, ATVing, and state park enforcement. Assistance was given to the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office with an ATV safety class in Russell.
CO Jim Robinson (Slayton) reports that bird flu has been found in the area. Thus, wild bird testing has stopped.
District 16 – New Ulm area
CO Shane Vernier (Willmar) spent time working angling and boating activity. He also spoke at a firearms safety class and picked up an incidentally caught otter.
CO Nicholas Klehr (Litchfield) spent the majority of the week working AIS enforcement along with checking anglers and boating safety. Water levels in the area are still high, so boaters are advised to use caution and check at accesses for signs if lakes are under a county ordinance for slow/no-wake.
CO Zachary Larson (Hutchinson) focused patrol efforts this past week on angling, boat and water enforcement, and AIS activity. Larson also gave a law and ethics presentation to a group of ATV safety students in Bird Island.
CO Dustin Miller (Windom) continued follow-up on a public waters case with DNR hydrologists this past week. He also worked angling and AIS activity.
CO Mike Gruhlke (Jackson) reports that he worked the turkey season, angling enforcement, AIS, boat and water safety, and ATV enforcement.
District 17 – Mankato area
CO Tyler Lusignan (Faribault) reports working boat and water safety, monitoring AIS, and checking anglers on local lakes. Lusignan participated in the “Vehicles for Kids” event, during which he educated and showed what types of vehicles the DNR uses.
CO Meng Moua (Spring Valley) focused on angling and ATV activities. Kayakers were out in numbers after the recent rainfall in the area. A reminder that the water is still extremely cold and all watercraft users should wear life jackets.
CO Jeremy Henke (Albert Lea) took several calls about “abandoned” young animals this week. Remember that these animals are not abandoned and the best thing you can do is leave them alone.
District 18 – Rochester area
CO Mitch Boyum (Rushford) reports working ATV trails and dealing with fawn deer-related calls. People are reminded to please leave fawns alone.
CO Tyler Ramaker (La Crescent) attended the Southeast Minnesota Law Enforcement Memorial Service, which honored officers killed in the line of duty, including five game wardens. An investigation was conducted in cooperation with a Wisconsin conservation warden that resulted in an overlimit of trout.
CO Brittany Hauser (Red Wing) spent time investigating a trespass complaint and having a ride-along with a local high school senior.
CO Annette Kyllo (Rochester) reports animal-related complaints, including a sick fox, a dead eagle, and turkeys harassing a neighborhood, were fielded and taken care of.
CO Derek Schneider (Zumbrota) reports a raccoon-hunting trespass complaint was handled.