District 2 - Bemidji area
CO Tom Hutchins (Crookston) reports contacting waterfowl hunters throughout the week. Time was also spent checking anglers and small-game hunters. Bear-hunting enforcement was also worked. Wetland violation cases were followed up on.
CO Tim Gray (Bagley) looked into a hunter harassment complaint, a dead swan (electrocuted) and baiting complaints.
CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports conducting AIS inspections as cabin owners pull their watercraft out of the lake for the season. A TIP call of possible overlimits was taken, as was one for extra lines. The East Otter Tail Chapter of the Minnesota Darkhouse and Spearing Association was addressed and questions about the new sunfish limits were answered. Several calls were taken with questions about the fall hunting seasons.
CO Jake Swedberg (Detroit Lakes) spent the past week checking duck hunters and anglers. More diver ducks have been moving into the area with the cold weather. Fishing success has been spotty, but anglers are having luck with some walleyes.
CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji) checked anglers, waterfowl hunters and grouse hunters throughout the past week. The crappie bite on small lakes in the area is excellent. While checking one couple, it was found they were 46 crappies over their legal limit. Vollbrecht assisted the Beltrami County Sheriff’s Office with an individual who was armed with a pistol walking along the highway. The individual was later taken into custody by the sheriff’s office.
CO Angie Warren (Mahnomen) worked waterfowl, small-game and archery hunting activity. Time was spent on angling and boating activity. Trails were patrolled for ATV and off-road vehicle activity. Information was provided on open cases and hunting regulations. AIS-compliance checks were performed.
District 4 - Walker area
CO Calie Kunst (Remer) continued working small-game hunting enforcement and ATV enforcement. Complaints were taken on duck hunters shooting after hours, using motorized decoys and shooting at swans. Kunst also encountered ATV riders stuck in a wetland after operating on a state highway.
CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) primarily checked deer-, grouse-, and duck-hunting activity in the area. More grouse are being seen in the area and duck-hunting success has been variable depending on location. Plenty of anglers, ATV riders, and off-highway motorcycle riders were also seen enjoying the area. A public waters restoration order was served. Enforcement action was taken for ATV and OHM violations.
CO Jacque Hughes (Longville) continued to check hunters, anglers, and ATV riders. She assisted the county with a motorcycle vs. vehicle crash and a driving complaint. Enforcement action was taken on an ATV violation and a big-game violation.
CO Randy Posner (Staples) checked waterfowl hunters this past week. Hunters had fair success. Mallards were the most common ducks harvested, and it seems most of teal have moved south. Violations observed were expired registration, no HIP certification and unsigned stamps. Anglers had fair success, and muskie anglers report lots of active fish. Complaints of ATVs on the roads and ditches received enforcement time. Fall turkey hunters were checked and the success was low.
District 9 - Brainerd area
CO Amber Ladd (McGregor) worked a busy week of checking waterfowl, small-game and archery hunters. Ladd worked Aitkin Lake for anglers and investigated a state land trespass. She assisted with an ATV crash. Ladd continues to train a (COC) Conservation Officer Candidate.
CO Bob Mlynar (Aitkin) worked angling, waterfowl, grouse and ATV activity. The officer assisted an individual in capturing a loon and removing a hook and fishing line from it. The officer also assisted with a duck hunter overboard who is recovering after spending over two hours in the water.
CO Patrick McGowan (Pine River) worked waterfowl hunters and anglers throughout the week. Assistance was also given to a waterfowl hunter who was yelling for help and in the water hanging on to his boat. Enforcement action was taken for numerus waterfowl and angling violations.
CO Scott Fitzgerald (CCSRA) Cuyuna Country State Recreation Area reports patrolling the SRA for illegal vehicle activity and also checked for state park permits. He checked anglers in the park who were trying their luck at some fall trout. Small-game and waterfowl hunters were monitored throughout the week and weekend. A call regarding illegal hunting activity was investigated and many outdoor law-related questions were answered throughout the week and weekend. Archery deer hunters were checked and the park was checked for illegal OHM/ATV activity. Enforcement action was taken for park violations.
CO Tony Flerlage (Crosby) checked duck hunters this week. Bird numbers were low. Fishing pressure has picked up and the fish are cooperating. He also attended as part of the Honor Guard for the funeral of retired CO Kjellberg.
District 10 - Mille Lacs area
CO Dustie Speldrich (Willow River) responded to a dog-chasing-deer complaint and nuisance-beaver complaints. Moose-sighting-calls in Willow River and Askov have been a daily occurrence. A young bull has been spotted several times. Speldrich also assisted with a Presidential security detail in Duluth.
CO Mikeena Mattson (Wealthwood) primarily spent the week working hunting activity. Calls were fielded regarding duck hunting, hunting stands, trespass, and navigation hazards on Mille Lacs Lake. Violations encountered included taking small game without a license, taking migratory waterfowl with toxic shot, operating an unregistered ATV, failure to transfer ATV ownership, operating an ATV without headlights on, and exceeding the passenger capacity on an ATV.
District 11 - St. Cloud area
CO Caleb Silgjord (Sauk Centre) spent time during the week checking hunters and anglers in the station. Silgjord assisted with an Honor Guard detail for retired Conservation Officer Kjellberg at the Fort Snelling Chapel. Waterfowl numbers in the station were much lower than seen on opening weekend.
CO Todd VanderWeyst (Paynesville) handled multiple trespass calls this past week. He also is working with neighboring officers on upcoming work details.
CO Adam Seifermann (St. Cloud) reports conducting seasonal equipment maintenance. He also assisted other local law enforcement agencies as well as the DNR Fish and Wildlife Division with injured animals and WMA violations. He also completed required online training. Enforcement action for the week consisted of no watercraft navigation lights, no hunting and angling licenses in possession, angling without a license and using attractants in areas of the no feeding/attractant ban.
CO Keith Bertram (Long Prairie) responded to a bear in a corn chopper call this past week. The bear was apparently spooked by the chopper and ran into the machine while it was cutting corn. It was injured and took off into a swamp. Bertram received excellent assistance from the Morrison County Sheriff’s Office. The bear had to be put down due to its injuries and the meat was salvaged.
District 12 - Princeton area
CO Tony Musatov (Sauk Rapids) checked anglers and hunters. He investigated a complaint of leaving property on a WMA.
CO Mike Krauel (Mora) spent the past week checking waterfowl hunters and patrolling for ATV riders. Enforcement action was taken for no license in possession, unplugged shotgun, and possession of lead shot shells.
CO Nate Benkofske (Milaca) reports checking waterfowl hunters and investigating wetland violations this past week. Enforcement action was taken for unplugged shotguns, no federal duck stamps, lack of life jackets, and late shooting. ATVs were also stopped for registration violations. Benkofske arrested one ATV operator for DWI.
CO Angela Londgren (Cambridge) checked hunters, bear baits and anglers. Enforcement action was taken for trespass, waterfowl-license violations, and an illegal bear-bait station.
NR Standby Pilot Luke Ettl (Grand Rapids) staffed the helicopter in Roseau on fire duty.
NR Pilot John Heineman (Bemidji) flew a training flight and worked on required annual courses.
CO Pilot Christopher Lofstuen (Grand Rapids) reports flying bear telemetry and making an appearance at a fall colors fly-in event.
CO Pilot Jason Jensen (Brainerd) reports bringing an aircraft back online after maintenance. Jensen spent time on local ATV trails and checked anglers. Enforcement action was taken for insufficient PFDs and no sound-producing device.
NR Pilot Brad Maas (Brainerd) went to Roseau on helicopter fire duty. Drier conditions in the northwest have aircraft on standby. He also began preparing a helicopter for aerial fish stocking and completed administrative tasks.
Water Resource Enforcement Officers
WREO Robert Haberman (North Central) worked on WCA cases in his assigned area. AIS compliance was worked and small-game hunters checked. Calls for service were answered.