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CO Reports: Breaking out the ATV? Read the regulations!

Area MnDNR Conservation Officer Weekly Reports - April 12, 2022

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District 10 - Mille Lacs area

CO (Conservation Officer) Mikeena Mattson (Wealthwood) worked sport fishing, trapping, and ATV enforcement this week. Enforcement action was taken for various ATV violations, including failure to display current ATV registration, failure to transfer ATV ownership, no helmets on juvenile ATV passengers, illegal ATV operation by juveniles, no ATV safety training, and operating an ATV without headlights on. As warmer weather brings more recreational ATV use, users are advised to review the off-highway vehicle regulations, which can be found on the DNR website or are available in a printed version. Calls were fielded regarding trapping complaints, incidentally trapped animals, a turkey hunting complaint, a litter complaint, and taking rough fish.

CO Dan Starr (Onamia) monitored trapping, ATV traffic, spring fishing, and state forest road use. Dead and sick birds are being called in. The cause of death is undetermined at this time. Enforcement action was taken for lacking ATV registration, ATV trespass, and absence of safety training certificates.


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Read the MN DNR ATV Regulations - Download here!

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CO Gregory Verkuilen (Garrison) checked ATV riders who were making use of mostly snow-free right-of-ways. Some beaver trappers were out making use of the ice-free inlets and outlets. He also worked on equipment maintenance and storing winger gear.

CO Victoria Griffith (Isle) checked angling and trapping activity around the area. ATV and off-highway motorcycle activity was monitored. Time was also spent answering questions regarding the upcoming spring turkey season.


District 2 - Bemidji area

CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji #1) attended annual in-service training at Camp Ripley. He also worked a boat and water detail on the Rainy River over the weekend. The accesses and river were extremely busy.

CO Jake Swedberg (Detroit Lakes) spent the week assisting with firearms safety classes and attending annual in-service training. Around 60 students are currently completing their firearms safety classes in the Detroit Lakes area.

CO Angie Warren (Mahnomen) monitored rivers and streams for fish run activity. Angling activity was worked, with ice conditions continuing to change daily. Forest trails were monitored for ATV and off-road vehicle activity. Area WMAs were patrolled.


District 4 - Walker area

CO Adam Seifermann (Staples) reports checking panfish anglers and monitoring ATV activity. He received several calls about sick/injured wildlife. Enforcement action consisted of no license in possession and targeting game fish in the closed season. He also reports assisting other law enforcement agencies and area Wildlife staff.

CO Patrick McGowan (Walker) patrolled Cass and Crow Wing counties for angling activity. He also assisted with patrolling the Rainy River. Enforcement action was taken for numerous violations.

CO Nick Baum (Park Rapids) patrolled the area for angling activity. He answered calls for an incidentally trapped otter and nuisance-beaver issues. Baum wants to remind anglers to check ice conditions frequently if they’re heading out.

CO Calie Kunst (Remer) spent time checking late ice anglers and ATV riders. She also took various phone calls, including an injured-animal complaint.

CO Jacque Hughes (Longville) checked anglers and took multiple injured-deer calls. Enforcement action was taken for expired registration and no license in possession.

CO Jordan Anderson (Wadena) spent time at annual training and investigated deer-season violations. Calls were received regarding injured/sick animals. Equipment was maintained in preparation for the changing seasons

CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) primarily attended annual in-service training. Some anglers were checked as the lake ice continues to hold up. Some accesses are in bad shape, though. Enforcement action was taken for an angling violation.

District 7 - Grand Rapids area

CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) checked anglers, monitored trapping activity and answered calls on feeding deer. Fairbanks and his K9 partner Si also met with area elementary school kids this week. Enforcement action was taken for license issues.

CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) worked ice angling activity with winter and ice conditions still holding on. Some holes have started to form on area lakes near landings so caution should be taken when venturing out. Enforcement action was taken for failing to keep proper taxidermy records. Action was also taken for angling without a proper 2022 angling license.

CO Brian Holt (Grand Rapids) checked angling and ATV activity throughout the previous week. Time was also spent following up on lake service provider AIS permitting. Holt worked on open cases and assisted with the inspection and maintenance of Division-issued firearms at Camp Ripley.

CO Jimmy Van Asch (Pengilly) focused enforcement efforts on sport fishing, ATV, and commercial enforcement throughout the surrounding areas. Several nuisance-wildlife complaints were fielded and addressed. Van Asch attended Division training as well.

CO Taylor Hochstein (Hill City) focused efforts on fishing and trapping activity. Ice conditions in the area remain good overall but are beginning to deteriorate near shorelines. Please use caution if venturing out for late-season ice fishing.

District 9 - Brainerd area

CO Chelsey Best (Pequot Lakes) worked fishing, trapping, and ATV enforcement. Numerous wildlife-related calls were handled.

CO Amber Ladd (Aitkin) worked spring beaver-trapping activity and watched some turkey scouting activities as well as late ice angers.

CO Eric Sullivan (Brainerd) worked area lakes and checked anglers. Ice conditions on area lakes are beginning to deteriorate and ice is starting to break away from the shorelines. Sullivan also checked open-water anglers on the Rainy River. Anglers reported the walleye fishing was pretty good and some anglers reported catching their personal best walleye. Violations detected were angling without a license, no personal flotation device, expired registration and a variety of other boating safety violations.

CO Jim Guida (Brainerd East) worked at Camp Ripley this week training fellow conservation officers. A permit for a road-killed grouse was issued. Seasonal Division-issued equipment was also prepped for use.

CO Andrew Dirks (CCSRA) spent time at Camp Ripley training throughout the week.

Read more 'CO Reports'
Area MnDNR Conservation Officer Weekly Reports - January 24, 2023
Area MnDNR Conservation Officer Weekly Reports - January 19, 2023
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Area MnDNR Conservation Officer Weekly Reports - January 5, 2023
Area MnDNR Conservation Officer Weekly Reports - December 28, 2022
Area MnDNR Conservation Officer Weekly Reports - December 20, 2022
Area MnDNR Conservation Officer Weekly Reports - December 15, 2022
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Area MnDNR Conservation Officer Weekly Reports - December 6, 2022

District 11 - St. Cloud area

CO Stephen Westby (Little Falls) spent time checking river levels and ice conditions. Westby also attended annual in-service training in Camp Ripley.

CO Tou Vang (Pierz) attended training at Camp Ripley, conducted equipment maintenance, and issued a wildlife permit for a road-killed wild animal.

CO Todd VanderWeyst (Paynesville) observed anglers on the ice, shore, in boats and bowfishing this week. Fish were seen spawning in the shallow water and creeks. ATV activity has increased with the warmer weather.

District 12 - Princeton area

CO Mike Krauel (Mora) spent the week checking anglers and patrolling for ATV activity. Two anglers were found to be sharing more than just a fishing pole while angling for bass in a closed season. The first individual who was fishing when officers approached presented a valid fishing license to the officers. The second individual stated he had not been fishing, but when Krauel advised him that he had been observed him angling, the second individual admitted to angling without a license. That individual then proceeded to give Krauel a false name and stated he didn’t have any identification. When that individual was advised of the law regarding giving a peace officer a false name, the first angler quickly admitted he was the one without the license and that when he took the fishing rod from the second individual, he also took the second individual’s license because he did not have one. After admitting the truth, both individuals quickly produced valid IDs from the wallets in their pockets that officers had asked about earlier when told there were no IDs. Enforcement action was taken for fishing without a license, gross misdemeanor false name, targeting bass in a closed season, and lending/borrowing a license.

CO Ryan Hanna (Milaca) is continually monitoring the lakes and rivers as they open up. Hanna is also getting equipment out of storage and ready for the long summer ahead.

Aviation Section

CO Pilot Tim Gray (Bemidji) attended annual training at Camp Ripley.

CO Pilot Jason Jensen (Brainerd) reports completing in-service training and attending an Aviation Unit open house celebrating 75 years of DNR aviation services.

NR Pilot Brad Maas (Brainerd) worked on some helicopter maintenance items and completed a training flight in helicopter. He also did wolf-telemetry training with a pilot, attended an aviation webinar, and completed some Forestry online fire training.

CO Pilot Charles Scott (Grand Rapids) completed maintenance programs for fleet aircraft. He attended the 75th anniversary gathering for the DNR Aviation Unit. He completed recurrent training. He assisted Aitkin County in searching for stolen property along with CO Benkofske.

Standby CO Pilot Jake Willis (Grand Rapids) conducted training flights this week. Maintenance tasks as well as administrative tasks were also attended to.

NR Pilot Gracie Zeller (Brainerd) continued preparing for her applicators license. She helped prepare equipment including radios and a fuel trailer for the upcoming fire season and flew a wolf telemetry flight. She also attended the get-together celebrating 75 years of DNR aviation and the newly appointed Aviation Day.

Water Resource Enforcement Officers

WREO Joseph Stattelman (NW) spent the week at in-service training and working on open cases to close out and update. Time was spent following up on lake service provider permits and status.

WREO Robert Haberman (North Central) worked on cases in his assigned area. Time was spent with lake service provider follow-up and armorer duties for officers attending in-service.

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