MN DNR Weekly Report for Oct. 23, 2017

District 5 - Eveleth area CO Darrin Kittelson (Int'l Falls) no report. CO John Slatinski (International Falls #2) CO John Slatinski IV (International Falls 2)- Heard many reports of increased angling success on area waterways and less success in ...

District 5 - Eveleth area

CO Darrin Kittelson (Int’l Falls) no report.


CO John Slatinski (International Falls #2) CO John Slatinski IV (International Falls 2)- Heard many reports of increased angling success on area waterways and less success in the woods from small game hunters. The increased hunting activity also brought on increased ATV activity which resulted in several contacts that involved passengers and operators under 18 not wearing helmets. The CO assisted a St. Louis County Deputy with questions surrounding resource theft from private property. Time was spent monitoring a moose that was in a fenced area near Pelland Junction and was acting out of ordinary, which moved on once activity in the area subsided. CO Slatinski worked with the Forestry Division on an instance where an individual was burning waste piles from a logging operation without obtaining a permit despite sustained windy conditions.  



CO Colleen Adam (Ray) checked small game hunters and ATV operations.  Many hunters were happy with finding a variety of game and enjoying the pleasant weather and family gatherings.  Late season warm, dry and windy weather brought on wildfires-use caution with campfires.


CO Troy Fondie (Orr) no report.


CO John Velsvaag (Cook) C.O. John Velsvaag (Cook) checked waterfowl hunters and assisted with an ongoing big game investigation.  Duck hunters had some luck this past week, but grouse hunting still appears to be slow.  C.O. Velsvaag received several calls on nuisance animals and received a litter complaint.


CO Marc Hopkins (Tower) on leave.



CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked on-going hunting seasons, ATV’s, and worked spruce top and birch theft cases.  The officer investigated the third deer shot out of season (with a firearm) in a little over a week.  One case has no suspects, another has suspects and the third was solved and charges are in the works.  The state park manager received a complaint of ATV’s in the campground and spoke to the responsible party.  The manager suspected it would happen again and was correct, as the officer issued citations when he found them ignore the earlier warning.  Enforcement action was taken on transport loaded firearm, allow minor to violate game and fish laws, operate an ATV in a state forest campground, trespass, no balsam bough permit, and several ATV violations.


CO Matt Frericks (Virginia) spent time patrolling the Virginia station for deer baits. Several were located and the sites were documented including GPS coordinates and photographs. Reports of shining activity were followed up on. Assistance was provided to other area COs with balsam bough and spruce top theft violations. A duck hunter harassment case was investigated.   


CO Mark Fredin (Aurora) CO Mark Fredin (Aurora) Worked some angling/boating activity in the warm weather and found people having success.  Permits were issued for road killed animals.  Fredin responded to a complaint of duck hunter parking illegally. A road injured Bald Eagle was picked up and arrangements made to be brought to the raptor center.


District 6 - Two Harbors area Ely #1 – Fire Duty



Ely #2 – Fire Duty


CO Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) came across an illegal campsite on public lands during the week.  Someone had built a small structure, cut down a live tree to make a shooting range, left garbage, shell casings, and junk behind.  The CO did take note of the words Mother Nature, my happy place, and flower child written on the campsite structure.  He then wondered why someone who claimed to be so close to Mother Nature would leave such a mess strewn about on her forest floor?


Hovland - Leave


CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked a busy MEA weekend of grouse hunting, fishing, and ATV enforcement.  Numerous contacts were made resulting in violations, including an Illinois resident that had purchased resident combination licenses under his wife’s name and address.  Enforcement action included: no small game license, nonresident purchasing a resident license, loaded guns in motor vehicles, uncased handgun, transport grouse without a wing, fishing with an extra line, and expired ATV registration.



Co David Schottenbauer (Silver Bay) Worked area hunting activity this week.  Time was spent with equipment issues as well.  Area lakes were worked for activity this week.

CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Tofte) spent the week checking small game hunters, archery hunters and ATV riders. Time was also spent completing reports and following up on complaints.


CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked big game and small game hunting activity. The unusual warm weather has slowed grouse and duck hunting down a bit as the birds don’t seem to be moving. Wood ticks have also emerged in numbers once again making a walk in the woods less enjoyable. Murray assisted a neighboring officer with illegal road hunting activity and investigated nuisance animal complaints.


District 7 - Grand Rapids area CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) conducted fall maintenance on station equipment and taught an ATV safety class. The area saw nice weather and a great walleye bite this week.


CO Sarah Grell (Grand Rapids) spent time checking hunters this past week. She also investigated a timber theft case and worked on follow-up from other deer hunting cases. She attended a firearms safety class.



CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) worked waterfowl Hunters with better results had by hunters with new birds arriving in the area.  Enforcement action was taken for driving a motor vehicle while having loaded shotguns, failing to have a federal waterfowl stamp and not having licenses in possession


CO Jimmy Van Asch (Hill City) – worked angling, small game, migratory waterfowl, and big game enforcement.  Duck hunters are reporting steady success with new ducks moving into the area every day.  Grouse hunters on the other hand, continue to struggle to find birds.  COs Grell, Sutherland, and Van Asch assisted the Itasca County Sheriff’s Office with a lost hiker in the Bigfork area.  The individual was successfully located and medical treatment was given.  Enforcement action was taken for transporting loaded firearms in a motor vehicle, no federal duck stamp, unsigned federal duck stamp, angling with extra lines, and no license in possession. 


Pengilly – vacant.

District 8 - Duluth area Brookston- Vacant



CO Andy Schmidt (Duluth West) handled numerous nuisance animal calls during the week and assisted local law enforcement with vehicle crashes. The officer worked a shining complaint and observed a party shining a light out the driver’s window while in a cemetery. Officer Schmidt and Officer Duncan stopped the vehicle and the occupants were reluctant to explain their actions due to embarrassment. The occupants finally stated that they were looking for ghosts and used the camera flash as a regular flashlight does not light up ghosts.  They explained that their ghost radar on their phone said there were ghosts in the area. 


CO Kipp Duncan (Duluth East) checked fisherman throughout the Duluth area.  Many grouse hunters were also checked, some were checked walking with dogs, and others were checked while operating ATV’s.  Archery deer hunters were also worked throughout the week.  CO Duncan worked night shining complaint areas and followed up on trespass complaints.  Officer Duncan also assisted area LE with calls for service and emergency response to a motor vehicle crashes. 


CO Jeff Humphrey (Cromwell) on leave


CO Scott Staples (Carlton) and K9 Schody conducted a K9 talk and demo for 1st grade students in Esko. Small game hunters were checked over the past week with grouse numbers reportedly down in the area. Enforcement action was taken for ATV violations. Two complaints of found dead deer were investigated in the area. Both appeared to not be illegally taken deer and most likely were killed by motor vehicles. A complaint of a stolen deer stand was taken and is currently under investigation by the local Sheriff’s Office. Two litter complaints were taken in the Blackhoof WMA where garbage and a dead deer were dumped. Both instances are still under investigation. Time was spent patrolling Jay Cooke State Park were numerous enforcement contacts were made for no vehicle permits, parking in closed areas, and traffic violations.


Lake Superior Marine Unit CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers coming off Lake Superior for lake trout possession in their bag.  He also checked shore anglers on lakes North of Duluth, the walleyes are starting to provide a consistent bite as of late. Olson issued a bear possession permit over the weekend and found bird hunters are doing well now that most of the leaves have dropped over the last few days of rain and heavy winds.


CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked grouse hunters and ATVers. Assistance was given to local agencies with emergency calls.  Commercial herring nets were checked on Lake Superior. Enforcement action taken for ATV and commercial violations.


Lake Superior Unit – vacant.

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