MN DNR Weekly Report for May 16, 2016
District 5 - Eveleth area CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked complaints of fish being taken out of season, shooting at geese out of season, and worked invasive species enforcement and the fishing opener. Opening morning had a light dusting of snow ...
District 5 - Eveleth area
CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked complaints of fish being taken out of season, shooting at geese out of season, and worked invasive species enforcement and the fishing opener. Opening morning had a light dusting of snow and 26 degrees, keeping many anglers at home for the day, though a couple of anglers did too well and kept too many crappies. Two incidents of taking fish out of season were handled with enforcement action. A motorcycle passing the officer and going over 100 MPH was handled with the help of other agencies. Enforcement action was taken on take fish out of season, angle with extra lines, angling without a license in possession, insufficient PFD’s, AIS violations, a minnow trapping violation, OHV trespass, and driving after revocation.
CO Mark Fredin (Aurora) reported fishing opener started with a blanket of snow and below freezing temps. Those that braved the weather for the most part stated fishing was slow with hammer handle northern and small walleye being the main bite. AIS, ATV, and litter complaints were worked throughout the week.
CO Matt Frericks (Virginia) spent time checking anglers on Virginia area lakes during the fishing opener. Cold temps, high winds and snow flurries kept most of the anglers off the lakes at the start of the day. Only a few anglers were seen out on the water throughout the day. Enforcement action was taken for no license in possession and failure to display watercraft registration decal. Juvenile ATV traffic remains high in the Virginia area. Parents are cautioned they can be cited for allowing their kids to operate their ATVs illegally.
CO Marc Hopkins (Tower) finished up enforcement activity relating to sturgeon fishing, including failure to tag and register sturgeon. The officer took numerous calls regarding invasive species speaking with resort owners, guides, and anglers. The opener arrived with cold weather and snow squalls, limiting the number of anglers out at midnight. The anglers that braved the 30 degree weather and windy conditions on Saturday had pretty good luck. The officer observed many boats that were having good success. The officer also worked with AIS crews at the landings on Vermilion, compliance with AIS laws was high at the sites the officer worked. Enforcement action was taken on illegal length Walleye, no license, no registration, and narcotics.
CO Darrin Kittelson (Int’l Falls) reports a cold, wet, snowy, and windy fishing opener on Rainy Lake and Lake Kabetogama; unfortunately the fish were not very cooperative either. Enforcement action taken for the week consisted of no angling license in possession and illegal length fish. Training at Camp Ripley was attended and animal complaints were handled to round out the week.
CO Troy Fondie (Orr) reports monitoring angling activities. Opening day fishing found temps in the upper 20s, wind gusts over 20mph and snow – fishing success was very poor. ATV activities were monitored. Coordinated with DNR Forestry on forest road matters. Wolf depredation problems continue.
CO John Velsvaag (Cook) checked anglers this past week. Opener was slow but later some limits of fish were taken despite conditions. CO Velsvaag also attended training at Camp Ripley.
Cook - vacant.
International Falls #2 - vacant.
District 6 - Two Harbors area
CO Sean Williams (Ely) reports walleye and northern opener was well attended in spite of temperatures well below freezing and horizontal snow. Although the weather was not cooperating the fish were, and angling success was high on most lakes that were patrolled. Violations included: failure to display current watercraft registration, possessing glass beverage containers in the BWCAW and, angling with no license in possession.
CO Marty Stage (Ely) worked fishermen in the BWCAW and encountered various parties of canoers/kayakers without registrations, possessing beverage cans in the wilderness, and no PFDs (miles from civilization, in high winds, dangerously cold water, and snow squalls). Another canoe group had no BWCW permits and aluminum cans, but claimed to have been visiting the BWCAW for 30 plus years without knowing the requirements.
Surprisingly, this past weekend showed most violations to be from the relatively few non-motorized users and of the many motorboats contacted on Basswood’s Pipestone, none had registration, PFD, or can possession issues.
CO Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) finished up fire investigations, attended training at Camp Ripley and checked anglers on a very slow fishing opener. Some people in canoes were encountered paddling in white caps, over 48 degree water, without life jackets on. A few paddlers were turned away at BWCAW entry points because they didn’t have their canoes registered. Enforcement action was taken for boating violations.
CO Mary Manning (Hovland) checked a couple campfires to insure compliance with burn restrictions in the northeast. The officer worked a chilly fishing opener checking inland and steelhead anglers. CO Manning checked ATV operators and a few folks working to clear last winter’s storm damaged trees/brush. The officer was also flagged down by a distressed motorist; turned out the elderly driver nearly hit a large snapping turtle and the officer assisted in removing it from the roadway to prevent any future accident.
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked a busy, cold fishing opener. Numerous violations were detected over the weekend including over limit of northerns, use game fish as bait, illegal slot length northern, extra line, unregistered boat, no PFDs, litter, unattended line, and no license in possession. Overall, the bite was slow.
CO David Schottenbauer (Silver Bay) worked area fire complaints. Time was also spent working anglers and boating activity for the opener. Activity on the opener was slow due to cold temperatures and driving winds, however one angler said, “But at least it’s snowing!”
CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Tofte) worked the fishing opener, ATV riders and anglers hitting the back streams for Brook trout. It was another opener with snow and strong winds; the hardcore anglers that braved the weather did alright. The officer saw some nice limits of fish. Time was also spent working in the BWCA. Enforcement action was taken for angling, boating and traffic violations.
CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked a cold fishing opener on the North Shore complete with snow showers. Fishing success was slow with very few anglers. Murray responded to a three vehicle car crash on Hwy 61 where a truck was struck by another vehicle causing it to roll over. One occupant in the crash was taken to the hospital for observation.
District 7 - Grand Rapids area
CO Randy Patten (Northome) checked anglers and boaters, worked AIS laws, and patrolled for illegal ATV activity. Enforcement action taken for possessing slot walleye, no license in possession, fail to remove drain plug, transport aquatic vegetation, and take Canada geese out of season.
CO Jayson Hansen (Big Fork) worked ATV, sport fishing, boating, AIS, and assisted with firearms qualifications and training at Camp Ripley. He patrolled state park areas, state forests, and public water accesses. Preparations were made for upcoming academy instruction, and division training. Violations included no license in possession, transporting aquatic macrophytes, transporting live fish, transporting lake water, taking geese in closed season, and ATV on the roadway. If you are having problems with geese on your lawn, shooting is not the solution. Please call the division of wildlife and they will assist you. If you cannot get ahold of them contact your local CO. It’s not worth the fine, restitution, loss of a firearm, and possible hunting revocation.
CO Sarah Grell (Grand Rapids) checked angling and boating activity this past week and weekend. She checked many anglers over opener and also worked ATVing activity. She took a several TIP calls including one concerning illegal bass fishing and another about fishing in a closed area. She took a complaint of an injured owl. Enforcement action was taken for several angling violations.
CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) worked a busy week with fishing opener in the mix. Enforcement action was taken for bass out of season, no angling license, failure to register a watercraft, no throwable on a watercraft and angling too close to a dam.
CO Gary Lefebvre (Pengilly) worked fishermen, watercraft, ATVs, state parks and campgrounds. He also handled boating and fishing complaints during the week.
CO Jimmy Van Asch (Hill City) monitored angling, boating safety, trapping, and ATV activities throughout the surrounding areas. Many anglers were asked to endure snow, high winds, and a slower than usual walleye bite for the 2016 fishing opener. Some anglers were seen scooping snow from their boats opening morning. Assistance was given to Itasca County Sheriff’s Office for a capsized boat. All of the occupants of the boat were rescued and safely brought to shore for medical attention. Enforcement action was taken for taking fish in closed season, no angling license in possession, fail to display valid boat registration, no throwable PFD, fail to display valid ATV registration, and no ATV lights.
District 8 - Duluth area
CO Kipp Duncan (Duluth) continued working fish run activity for both walleye and steelhead. Several hours were worked talking with fisherman about AIS. Many people were contacted over the weekend enjoying the cold weather while fishing the 2016 opener. Some examples of violations encountered included no license, over limit, no PFD’s and extra lines. Officer Duncan also returned several telephone calls, assisted local law enforcement and was interviewed by a local television station about the upcoming fishing opener.
CO Jeff Humphrey (Cromwell) checked anglers, turkey hunters, and worked OHV, AIS and fire enforcement during the week. CO Humphrey patrolled the Sawyer WMA and in the Fond du Lac State Forest. CO Humphrey attended in-service at Camp Ripley. CO Humphrey participated in the Law Enforcement Memorial Day event in St. Paul. Anglers had a tough opener with high winds and cold temps. Some lucky anglers caught a few fish. Violations were encountered for illegal burning, ATV operation/registration, boating and angling
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) spoke to a bow huntereducationclass in Carlton and attended K9 training in the metro area. Cold weather kept fishing activity low in the area on opener. Several anglers were checked and not much success was reported. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license, no trout stamp, take bass out of season, and possessing drug paraphernalia.
Lake Superior Marine Unit
CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) reports a cold and windy opening fishing weekend. Many anglers toughed it out and had success on area lakes north of Duluth. The water levels are high compared to years past opening weekends. Enforcement action was taken for no lifejacket, fish transportation issues, no angling license and extra lines. North Shore anglers are still fishing rivers and shore casting for kamloop trout.
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers on a snowy and windy typical-Duluth fishing opener. Some anglers found success, but many found cold fingers. A burning complaint was checked where a swamp was reportedly lit on fire, but luckily endangered no buildings. A report of a moose carcass dumped turned up a cow skeleton that was disposed of by a farmer in a less-than-responsible way. Enforcement action was taken for angling and ATV violations.
Lake Superior Unit - vacant.