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Top 10 list of hunting violations in Minnesota

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has released a list of the top 10 hunting- related violations in 2012. 

Most citations and warnings were written for trespass. According to the DNR, a person may not enter legally posted land or agricultural land for outdoor recreation purposes without permission.

Other common violations include not having a hunting license in possession, or none at all; having a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle, failure to tag an animal upon harvest and not wearing the required amount of blaze orange.

Violation                                                                         No. of citations/warnings in 2012

1.   Trespass                                                                                          337

2.   License/registration/permit not in possession/displayed                     245

3.   No valid license/registration/permit                                                    239

4.   Hunting over bait                                                                            225

5.   Transporting uncased/loaded firearm in a motor vehicle                  222

6.   Unplugged shotgun                                                                         161

7.   No blaze orange                                                                               139

8.   Closed season (take/possession)                                                      126

9.   Untagged (deer, fur, traps, nets)                                                       124

10. No federal waterfowl stamps                                                            122

“Only a small percentage of Minnesota hunters run afoul of the law,” explained Ken Soring, DNR Enforcement Division director, “a majority of hunters in our state abide by wildlife rules and regulations.”

The 2013 Minnesota Hunting & Trapping Regulations Handbook is available online or can be obtained from any hunting and fishing license vendor, as well as many outdoor retailers. 

The DNR’s mission is to work with citizens to conserve and manage the state’s natural resources, to provide outdoor recreation opportunities, and to provide for commercial uses of natural resources in a way that creates a sustainable quality of life. A major part of that mission involves monitoring hunters to ensure they hunt safely, ethically and abide by the state’s wildlife laws and regulations.

With 24 of 155 conservation officer field stations vacant this becomes an overwhelming job. These officers spend endless hours hiking through the woods and traveling rural roads attempting to protect and preserve Minnesota’s natural resources.

Hunters are also encouraged to be on the lookout for wildlife violations and report such violations to the Turn In Poachers (TIP) hotline at 800-652-9093. Cell phone users can dial #TIP. Informants can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward. 

Al Edenloff
Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  
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