District 5 - Eveleth area
CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls #1) reports a busy weekend with lots of people out enjoying the warmer weather on Lake Kabetogama and Rainy Lake. Fishing was relatively slow on both lakes with water temperatures still a little cool for a good bite. Beaver-trapping issues were handled along with burning during a fire ban. People are reminded that a burning permit is needed to burn and restrictions are in place so only variance permits are being issued. Enforcement action was taken for illegal-length walleyes, boat registration issues, angling license issues, and open burning during a burning ban.
CO John Slatinski IV (Ray) monitored the end of the beaver trapping season and fielded calls and concerns of nuisance beaver activity. Slatinski heard and responded to complaints of unpermitted open burning. Water temps are beginning to warm resulting in dock anglers starting to see more success. With the wind finally cooperating and temperatures warming there were plenty of people observed being kissed by the early season sun, and the next day they probably wished they had not exposed so much skin. Administrative tasks and equipment maintenance were completed.
CO Troy Fondie (Orr) reports angling success remains poor overall, area lakes were checked, public access sites and area forest roads were monitored. Assistance was provided to DNR Forestry.
CO Shane Zavodnik (Cook) continued to follow up with individuals concerning violations found during the spring trapping season and also checked anglers on Lake Vermilion. With the warm weather, Zavodnik was pleased to see more families out on the lake over the weekend, many with kids, enjoying the crappie bite. The majority of anglers checked during the week were also found to have great boating safety compliance. Enforcement action taken throughout the week included burning without a permit, no license in possession, multiple ATV violations, and failure to remove boat plug while transporting. Zavodnik wants to remind everyone that fawn season is rapidly approaching. Please be mindful if you notice one, and let it be.
CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked anglers, boaters, ATV riders, state park and invasive species enforcement. He worked a wetland draining complaint, a second walleye-carcass-dumping complaint in as many weeks, and taught a wildlife identification class. So far this year, nearly all folks observed paddling kayaks did not have PFDs on board. Kayaks are watercraft, and not as seaworthy as other craft, which makes PFDs a must. One life jacket deficient, a kayaker checked also had no fishing license and no trout stamp on a designated trout lake. Enforcement action was taken on no angling license, no trout stamp, possession of drug paraphernalia and marijuana, and a number of ATV and boating violations.
CO Duke Broughten (Aurora) spent the week monitoring fishing and ATV activity. Fishing success remained limited this week. Numerous ATV complaints were received. Broughten also investigated a trespass complaint. Lack of rain has increased fire danger significantly.
Virginia – vacant.
International Falls #2 – vacant.
District 6 - Two Harbors area
CO Sean Williams (Ely #1) continued to focus on angling activity. Although fishing pressure was down from the opening weekend a good number of people were checked enjoying the warmer weather. Success, however, was even less than the previous week and very few fish were seen.
CO John Velsvaag (Ely #2) monitored the close of the beaver trapping season, and responded to an angling complaint of a possible overlimit. The BWCAW was patrolled as well.
CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Grand Marais) spent the week working anglers, ATV riders and invasive species enforcement. He conducted multiple patrols in the BWCAW. Enforcement action was taken for angling and ATV violations.
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked angling, boating, ATV, and AIS enforcement throughout the week. Assistance was also provided to other agencies on a couple calls. Compliance over the weekend was good, but during the week a couple extra-line citations were issued, as well as citations for fishing without a license and no PFDs. A warning was issued for fail to display ATV registration.
CO David Schottenbauer (Silver Bay) worked area angling and boating activity. Time was spent patrolling area park properties as well.
CO Kylan Hill (Tofte) reports contacting anglers, canoers, recreational boaters, and a host of ATV operators throughout the week as some nice weather hit the North Shore. Brook trout and walleyes were again seen dominating the stringers this week with some nice-sized fish being seen. Boating safety and ATV violations were non-existent as operators did a great job with making sure they followed the laws. No fishing license in possession was the only infraction encountered during the week.
CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked boating and angling activity during the week. Warmer weather arrived making fishing a bit more comfortable and warming up the water. Fire danger remains high in the area and caution needs to be taken when having campfires to make sure they are contained and fully extinguished when you leave them.
CO Mary Manning (Hovland) assisted with a grassfire in Hovland. Due to a quick response from fire crews, the lucky homeowner only lost some brush, not any buildings. She also responded to a call for a couple stuck on an area snowmobile trail. The couple drove almost a mile on an old forest road before burying their all-wheel drive vehicle. The multiple use road designation meant no citation, just a very large tow bill. Manning also patrolled area forest roads, state parks, lakes, boat accesses and rivers. She also participated in a Peace Officers Memorial with the DNR Honor Guard in Duluth.
District 7 - Grand Rapids area
CO Jayson Hansen (Bigfork) checked anglers, worked small game, ATV, AIS, and patrolled state parks. Numerous game and fish questions were answered. He also responded to wildlife-related complaints and a grass fire.
CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) worked TIP complaints, patrolled area state parks, checked anglers and monitored OHV activity. Angler success was better this week. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license, no navigation lights after sunset, overlimit of crappies, illegal-length walleyes and operating an unregistered ATV.
CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) worked angling issues over the past week. Enforcement action was taken for possessing slot length walleyes, not having an angling license, not possessing an angling license and failing to register a watercraft.
CO Jimmy Van Asch (Pengilly) reports working angling, ATV, boating, and AIS enforcement throughout the surrounding areas. Enforcement action was taken for possession of an overlimit of crappies, angling without a license, no angling license in possession, operating a watercraft without required navigation lights, insufficient number of PFDs, and failure to display valid watercraft registration.
CO Taylor Hochstein (Hill City) continued to focus efforts on monitoring angling activity. The crappie bite is good on most lakes and the walleye bite seems to be better on smaller lakes with warmer water. Assistance was given to other law enforcement agencies and several angling and ATV violations were addressed.
NE ATV officer – vacant.
District 8 - Duluth area
CO Jacob Willis (Brookston) worked shore and boat angling activity this week as well as ATV traffic. Enforcement action was taken for no angling license, camping at a public water access site, operating an OHM in the road right of way, and operate unregistered vehicle. Willis also participated in the Peace Officer Memorial ceremony in Duluth as part of the Honor Guard detail.
CO Andy Schmidt (Duluth West) worked anglers and boaters most of the week. Weather held a lot of folks at bay along with lack the angling success. ATV complaints were handled and time was spent handling nuisance animal calls. Bears are very active and please remove bird/wildlife feeders and stow garbage in a secure location. COs in the area handled two separate calls at the same time of fledgling great horned owls out of nests. The Raptor Center recommended attempting to nest the fledglings in man-made nests. Schmidt attended the Law Enforcement Memorial Procession along Lake Avenue in Duluth on Friday, May 15.
CO Kipp Duncan (Duluth East) continued to work fishing and boating enforcement on area lakes and rivers. Time was spent following up on wolf-depredation complaints and ATV activity was also worked throughout the week. Public accesses around the Duluth area were worked with an emphasis on AIS enforcement. Duncan also participated in a multi-agency law enforcement memorial event in Duluth.
CO Jeff Humphrey (Cromwell) spent time working angling, boating, and AIS enforcement Humphrey also conducted patrols in area state parks, wildlife management areas, and at public water accesses. TIP calls were worked involving trespassing and angling in a closed area. Humphrey assisted in an Honor Guard detail in Duluth for Law Enforcement Memorial Day and Humphrey took a number of injured and orphaned wildlife calls over the week.
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) assisted with K9 training in the metro area. Time was also spent checking shore anglers and patrolling area state parks. A report of someone recklessly discharging a firearm in an area state forest was also looked in to. The suspect was already gone when officers arrived. A call of someone finding a car-hit armadillo south of Wrenshall was looked into and verified. A young gentleman located the deceased animal in the ditch of Highway 23 while he was checking the mail. He wanted to keep the armadillo to have it mounted and was given permission to do so.
Lake Superior Marine Unit
CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) worked Lake Superior in the Duluth-Knife River waters during the week. Catches of chinook and Coho salmon were seen, along with some brown trout as well. Olson worked state park enforcement efforts over the weekend and reported the parks were busy with hikers and bikers. Olson had the honor of attending the Peace Officer Memorial event hosted by Duluth Police Department. Olson received reports of injured animals and bear complaints as well.
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers and boaters over the week. Miller reports questions were answered about migratory boundaries on the tributaries, as well as details on identifying trout and salmon. State parks saw heavy use over a nice weekend. Enforcement action was taken for ATV violations.
Lake Superior Unit – vacant.