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Fishing, ATV and nuisance-animal activities dominate DNR officer workloads

Fishing remains good on Lake of the Woods using a variety of techniques, and shallow water still seems to be the ticket on Upper Red Lake.

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Here is the weekly report from Department of Natural Resources conservation officers in northwest Minnesota and adjacent areas of northern Minnesota for Monday, July 11:

District 1 - Baudette area

CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked anglers on Lake of the Woods and ATV activity around Warroad. Enforcement contacts for the week include possession of illegal-length walleyes, angling with an extra line, and operating a watercraft without the required navigation lights. Assistance was also given to the Roseau Police Department with a bear in a tree.

CO Corey Sura (Baudette East) patrolled angling activity on Lake of the Woods and Upper Red Lake. Fishing remains good on Lake of the Woods using a variety of techniques, and shallow water still seems to be the ticket on Upper Red. Sura also spent time monitoring ATV activity in his work station.

CO Jeremy Woinarowicz (Thief River Falls West) worked on Lake of the Woods with COs Sura and Simonson, and patrolled local state parks and ATV trails. Enforcement action was taken for state park pass violations, no ATV registration, and juvenile helmet and safety training violations.

CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck South) reports working boating, AIS and angling activity throughout this past week. Time was spent monitoring recreational vehicle activity on area trails and following up on cases of aquatic vegetation removal without a permit. Enforcement action for the week included removal of aquatic vegetation without a permit and angling license violations.

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READ MORE MINNESOTA DNR COVERAGE:

CO Nicholas Prachar (Blackduck North) worked ATV and angling activity near Upper Red Lake. Enforcement action was taken on numerous ATV violations.

Warroad #1 – vacant.

Warroad #2 – vacant.

Baudette #1 – vacant.

District 2 - Bemidji area

CO Tom Hutchins (Crookston) reports completing a deer hunting-related case involving deer from the 2020 and 2021 seasons. Time was also spent instructing at the current CO Academy at Camp Ripley. Anglers and watercraft operators were checked. Miscellaneous wildlife-related calls were also received.

CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji #1) spent time checking anglers on area lakes. The panfish bite remains strong and anglers are catching walleyes in the evenings. ATV activity was monitored on area trails and forest roads.

CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports fishing activity has slowed, with many walleye anglers failing to locate fish. Calls of possible dogs chasing deer and ATV trespass on local wildlife management areas were investigated. Vinton continued work with the local government unit on a wetland violation. Questions were answered about the inability to purchase a fishing license through the ELS system and whether a 15-year-old who’d taken the watercraft safety class but had lost his copy of the permit could still operate a personal watercraft.

CO Al Peterson (Osage) worked boating and angling activity. Enforcement action was taken on multiple violations. Peterson also handled miscellaneous calls and complaints regarding wildlife, minnow trapping and abandoned property.

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CO Steve Chihak (Moorhead) spent the week working sport fishing, boat and water safety and ATV enforcement. Time was also spent responding to miscellaneous wildlife-related calls.

CO Angie Warren (Mahnomen) spent time on angling and boating activity. A call of an abandoned PWC was investigated. Assistance was provided at Itasca State park. Area trails were patrolled for ATV and off-road vehicle activity.

CO Bill Landmark (Pelican Rapids) spent the week following up with cases and enforcement action over the Fourth of July weekend. Time was also spent working ongoing wetland and shoreline cases as well as investigating new complaints. Calls from the public included complaints of wetland fill, public waters excavation, and miscellaneous wildlife-related calls.

Bagley – vacant.

Bemidji #2 – vacant.

District 3 - Fergus Falls area

CO Andrew Goodman (Fergus Falls) focused on angling, AIS and boating enforcement this week. Complaints about special-regulation violations, netting and injured wildlife were handled. Goodman instructed an ATV safety field day in Fergus Falls and worked with the area hydrologist on potential public water violation cases.

CO Ryan Brown (Elbow Lake) continued to monitor ATV, angling, and boating activity in the area. Brown also spoke at an ATV safety class in Fergus Falls. Various boating and angling violations were encountered throughout the week.

CO Shane Osborne (Evansville) checked anglers, boaters and ATV riders. Follow-up investigations and reports were worked on from the Fourth of July weekend. Assistance was provided to the Fisheries Section on a project.

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CO Emily Douvier (Morris) reports working fishing and recreational vehicle activity. Enforcement action taken included operating an ATV without headlights, fishing without a fishing license in personal possession, and various life jacket-related violations.

CO Daniel Baumbarger (Glenwood) reports enforcement efforts for the week were concentrated on checking anglers and boaters and monitoring AIS law compliance.

Osakis – vacant.

District 4 - Walker area

CO Adam Seifermann (Staples) reports a steady increase in recreational traffic into the area. Area lakes, rivers and campgrounds continue to see an increase in demand. He also reports seeing many hunters getting private property ready for the upcoming bear- and deer-hunting seasons. Now is a great time to legally post your land in preparation for the upcoming seasons. Enforcement action consisted of a mix of boating angling and ATV-related offenses.

CO Jordan Anderson (Wadena) investigated a TIP call on potential illegal bait harvesting and spent time on the water. Enforcement action was taken for operating an off-road vehicle on a public roadway, operating a PWC after hours, no life jacket on a PWC, no navigation lights, and various other fishing and boating related violations.

CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) primarily checked boaters and anglers. ATV and AIS enforcement were also worked. Mathy also provided assistance when a motorist had a medical incident. Enforcement action was taken for boating and angling violations.

CO Jacque Hughes (Longville) checked ATV and angling activity. She also investigated various fishing related complaints.

CO Michael Cross (Lake George) reports working ATV traffic, recreational watercraft traffic, AIS, and angling. Activity was steady and angling was successful for quite a few anglers on the water. Cross took calls about nuisance bears and from concerned citizens about wolves living near their home. Enforcement action was taken for watercraft, angling, and ATV violations.

CO Patrick McGowan (Walker) reports working busy Cass and Crow Wing county lakes for activity. McGowan also assisted at Camp Ripley with CO Academy training. Enforcement action was taken for numerous violations.

ATV rec officer – vacant.

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