Thursday, April 18th, 2024

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Thursday, April 18th, 2024

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Minnesota Mixed Bag: Bear hunt lottery applications available

St. Paul — Prospective bear hunters have until Friday, May 3, to apply for a bear-hunting license from the Minnesota DNR. Applications for the 2024 season may be submitted online, at any license agent, or by telephone at 888-665-4236.

A total of 4,030 licenses are available in 15 quota areas where licenses are limited for the 2024 season, which opens Sunday, Sept. 1, and closes Sunday, Oct. 13.

The number of licenses available each year in the quota area is based on Minnesota’s bear population trends for those areas. The trends indicate the bear population has stabilized and is slowly increasing, in part because of recent conservative license quotas. License quotas for the 2024 season are similar to those available for the 2023 season.

Bear hunters who plan to apply for Bear Permit Area 51 should review the boundaries for newly created BPA 53 to ensure they select the right area they intend to hunt. Twenty licenses will be available in area 53, which the DNR created at the request of the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa.


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Lottery winners will be notified by Saturday, June 1. The deadline to purchase bear-hunting licenses awarded by lottery is Thursday, Aug. 1. Any remaining unpurchased licenses will be available over the counter starting at noon on Tuesday, Aug. 6.

An unlimited number of bear licenses also will be sold over the counter for the no-quota area that includes east-central and far northwestern Minnesota. No-quota licenses are valid only in the no-quota area.

Complete instructions about how to apply for a bear hunting license, maps of permit areas and a listing of permit availability for each area are available on the Minnesota DNR website.

Blue Ribbon Open House is Saturday

Oakdale, Minn. — The 15th Blue Ribbon Bait and Tackle open house will be held this Saturday (April 6) from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the shop in Oakdale. This is the shop’s spring “super sale” with specials on tackle, rods, reels, and more. There is no admission. Food will be provided by Big Guys Roadhouse BBQ.

The event is hosted by Josh Stevenson, owner of Blue Ribbon Bait and Mighty Musky Guide Service. For more information, visit or visit the Blue Ribbon Facebook page.

16th Minnesota Fishing Challenge is June 1

Brainerd, Minn. — When you combine fishing, faith, and fundraising, amazing things can happen. Lives can be saved and broken families restored. That’s the legacy of the Minnesota Fishing Challenge as it goes into its 16th annual event on June 1 this year.

The event has raised nearly $5 million for Minnesota Adult and Teen Challenge campuses across the state. It is now the largest fundraising fishing tournament in North America, and it takes place on the Gull Lake Chain of Lakes each year.

Anglers who enter the event raise funds among their family, friends and business associates. In 2023, the event raised a record $560,000.

For more information about the 2024 event, visit or to receive info through the mail, call the Brainerd MNTC office at (218) 833-8752.

BWSR Funding Available to Restore Wetlands

St. Paul — The Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources is accepting applications for conservation easements that will allow for wetland restoration projects for the agency’s Local Government Road Wetland Replacement Program.

Landowners across the state who have restorable wetlands on their property may apply to enroll land into permanent conservation easements for the LGRWRP. Landowners receive a per-acre payment rate and retain private ownership of enrolled land.

State and federal laws require replacement of wetlands that are filled or drained. Through the LGRWRP, restored wetlands can produce credits that are deposited into a statewide wetland bank. Local road authorities can use those credits to acquire state and federal wetland permits to proceed with safety related road projects. These program details are handled by BWSR, which provides payment directly to landowners for the right to restore the wetlands.

Landowners can work with their local soil and water conservation district staff to prepare applications. The application period closes April 17. Approximately $10 million is available for enrollments during this application period. Learn more about how to apply at

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