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Area Conservation Officers' Reports: Nov. 12, 2021

MN DNR CO Reports for the Brainerd area



District 9 - Brainerd area

CO Chelsey Best (Pequot Lakes) took enforcement action this week for registration issues, transport loaded firearms, baiting violations, paraphernalia, and operating on closed trails.

CO Amber Ladd (Aitkin) spent time this week working deer opener as well as fielding several calls leading up to opener mostly about trespass issues, CWD questions, and baiting. A reminder to hunters in the area that all attractants and minerals are not legal to have out in Aitkin and several other counties due to CWD restrictions.

CO Andrew Dirks (CCSRA) time was spent working the firearms deer opener. Many hunters were out, and some found good success. The mountain bike trails remain closed for the duration of the firearms deer season. Enforcement action for the week included license violations, transporting loaded firearms, and hunting over bait.


CO Nate Benkofske (McGregor) reports checking deer hunters and ATV riders throughout the week. Enforcement action was taken for unlawful party hunting, loaded transporting firearms in motor vehicles, trespass, and litter. Benkofske met with many first time hunters, both youth and adults, who were happy to be spending time in the woods.

CO Jim Guida (Brainerd East) worked a busy firearms deer opener and monitored some sport fishing activity. Officer Guida addressed deer baiting complaints/deer feeding violations that were discovered by the aviation wing. Reports were received from other hunters of illegal baiting activity. Officer Guida assisted a neighboring Conservation Officer in the seizure of a tracked vehicle that was illegally used in a wetland that was part of a Wildlife Management Area that was restricted no motorized vehicles. The hunter group also had three untagged deer. Enforcement action was taken.

CO Tony Flerlage (Crosby) saw many hunters participating in the deer season. Most were enjoying the hunt whether any deer were shot or not. The mild weather and early antlerless season were repeated as reasons for not seeing more deer.

CO Eric Sullivan (Brainerd) This week was full of deer hunting activity as archery hunters were getting their last opportunities before the firearms deer season opened. Sullivan worked with Crow Wing State Park staff to locate an archery hunter that was hunting on state park property. Enforcement action was taken and the hunters’ equipment and deer were seized. Firearms season came and a variety of violations were detected including hunting deer with aid of bait, failure to validate site tag and transporting loaded firearms.

Dan Determan has been a reporter for the Echo Journal since 2014, primarily covering sports at Pequot Lakes and Pine River-Backus
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