MN DNR Weekly Report for Aug. 28, 2017

District 5 - Eveleth area CO Darrin Kittelson (Int'l Falls) reports time spent monitoring activities at the International Falls Bass Championship Tournament over the weekend, along with providing a laser shot system at a local community carnival ...

District 5 - Eveleth area

CO Darrin Kittelson (Int’l Falls) reports time spent monitoring activities at the International Falls Bass Championship Tournament over the weekend, along with providing a laser shot system at a local community carnival which was part of the tournament activities.  Bear baiting and fishing enforcement continue to be the main focus of the workload.


CO John Slatinski (International Falls #2) reports much of the past week was spent checking bear baiting sites with activity increasing as the bear hunting opener closes in. Officer Slatinski attended a carnival at a local assisted living center along with a neighboring officer where the laser shoot system was set up and enjoyed by both youth and residents. Officers removed a back yard trampoline from the middle of Littlefork River with assistance from MN DOT and the city of Littlefork. Officer Slatinski also took a report of at least one bear hanging around the area of Woodenfrog campground. Assistance was provided to the State Patrol with a vehicle rollover near Littlefork. Enforcement contacts included theft, ATV operation and safety equipment violations, and loaded firearms on an ATV.  



CO Colleen Adam (Ray) attended annual training this week.


CO Troy Fondie (Orr) reports monitoring anglers, bear baiting, boating, ATV’s, wild rice, public access sites, and area forest roads.


CO John Velsvaag (Cook) checked anglers and boaters this past week.  Weather made fishing difficult but some nice crappies were caught.  Officer Velsvaag also followed up on a complaint and checked bear baiting activity.


CO Marc Hopkins (Tower) reports much of the week was spent working bear baiting stations. The officer also had an enjoyable experience seeing all the veterans at the Take a Veteran Fishing Event.  It is really amazing to see the dedication by so many in the area in putting on this and other events throughout the year.



CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked angling and bear bait station activity, along with state park and invasive species enforcement.   In-service training was attended at Camp Ripley.  The officer also handled shoreline alteration, wetland fill, and angling with extra line complaints. Enforcement action was taken on invasive species and littering violations.


CO Matt Frericks (Virginia) attended annual training at Camp Ripley. Time was spent checking bear baits and following up on reports of illegal bear baits. CO Frericks assisted sheriff deputies with a homeowner who thought it would be a good idea to try and burn a large pile of garbage. The homeowner was cited for the burning violation.

District 6 - Two Harbors area CO Sean Williams (Ely 1) reports bear baiting enforcement continued to be the focus over the week. Bear activity has increased and most of the baits checked showed recent bear activity. Violations included baiting bear with solid waste.


CO Marty Stage (Ely) found fishing to be good for those that were out on the lakes.  The fall colors are starting and the dogbane leaves are turning yellow.  Fall is definitely here.  Remember to wear your PFD as the water is going to be colder from here on out. 


CO Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) attended yearly in-service training at Camp Ripley.  He did a commercial minnow retailer inspection and continued checking bear baits for compliance. Enforcement action was taken for no minnow retailer’s license and for failing to drain water related equipment.



CO Mary Manning (Grand Marais East) helped teach firearms and defensive tactics at annual staff training at Camp Ripley.  The officer also attended training on 4th amendment issues while at Ripley and back at home checked bear bait stations and ATV operators.  CO Manning assisted with a search for a party in Judge Magney State Park who had dialed 911; after a thorough search of the area by law enforcement and parks staff it was determined that the call had been accidental and there was no emergency.


CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked bear baiting activity with some baits getting hit.  Time was also spent on the water and enforcement action was taken on license violations.


CO David Schottenbauer (Silver Bay) worked area bear bait activity this week.  Time was once again spent down at Camp Ripley wrapping up officer training. 


CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Tofte) spent the week checking bear baits. The officer patrolled the area for ATV activity and monitored state parks. Enforcement action was taken for big game and ATV violations.



CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked bear baiting and fishing activity during the week. Fishing remained good on Lake Superior this week. Nuisance bear and beaver complaints were taken and questions on the upcoming hunting seasons were answered.

District 7 - Grand Rapids area CO Randy Patten (Northome) attended annual training at Camp Ripley, patrolled for AIS violations related to watercraft transportation, and checked bear hunters baits and anglers. Enforcement action was taken for dispersed camping violations.


CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) attended annual in-service training, checked anglers, monitored bear baiting activities, and assisted the county in locating suspects that fled into the woods. The area rice crop is in good shape. Enforcement action was taken for angle without license in possession, expired registration on watercraft, and no sign at bear bait station.


CO Sarah Grell (Grand Rapids) attended division training this past week.  She received a couple nuisance bear complaints.  A reminder to hunters to be safe in the woods as bear season opens on Friday.



CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) worked bear baiting activity with many baits being hit by bear.  CO Sutherland also attended annual firearms training over the past week.  Looking at the wet conditions in the area many different waterfowl species have been spotted on area lakes and streams.  With the dry conditions in the Dakota’s, and the wet conditions locally, it seems that the area is setting up to have a great fall waterfowl season.


CO Jimmy Van Asch (Hill City) spent the week focusing on angling, big game, ATV, and wild rice enforcement throughout the surrounding areas.  CO Van Asch spent time armoring division rifles at Camp Ripley.  Time was also spent fielding bear baiting questions and ATV complaints.


Pengilly – vacant.

District 8 - Duluth area CO Nick Prachar (Brookston) reports that bear baiting season is in full swing.  Bears are hitting sites consistently and a promising bear season seems to be coming.  Time was spent working bear, ATV, and fishing activity in the area.


CO Andy Schmidt (Duluth West) returned calls about nuisance wildlife and bear related issues.  Time was spent assisting Lake County Sheriff's Office with search and rescue training and watercraft operation.  Area lakes and rivers were worked along with ATV complaint areas.  Follow up on a shoreline violation was monitored and calls were returned regarding bear baiting/hunting.   Local accesses were worked for AIS enforcement



CO Kipp Duncan (Duluth East) completed a falcon inspection and calls were answered and returned.  Area lakes were checked for fishing activity and incoming fishermen were talked to about the AIS regulations.  Some time was spent working on the upcoming bear season. 


CO Scott Staples (Carlton) attended annual in-service training at Camp Ripley. K9 training continues with K9 Schody getting ready for the upcoming busy fall. ATV permits and car/kill deer possession permits were issued. In preparation for the upcoming opener, some time was spent checking bear baits in the area.

Lake Superior Marine Unit CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) worked Lake Superior and the Duluth-Superior Harbor.  The wet and rainy weather kept many activities curtailed over the weekend. Officer Olson responded to the USCG with the report of a teenage male swept into Lester River; the victim was recovered by Duluth Police and Fire departments. With an unfortunate outcome, area rivers and streams are near spring water levels due to the recent high rainfall. Bear complaints continue to come in as they are putting on calories for the impending season change. Hunting questions were fielded and AIS enforcement was also worked at area public accesses, with good compliance found.


CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers on Lake Superior who found good success with lake trout between storms.  In-service training was attended at Camp Ripley and wild rice conditions and harvesters checked.  Substantial rainfall has led to high rivers and ponds in some places.  Enforcement action was taken for ATV violations.


Lake Superior Unit – vacant.

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