MN DNR Weekly Report for June 19, 2017
CO Troy Fondie (Orr) reports fishing and boating activities in full swing on area lakes. Forest roads were patrolled and public access sites checked.
CO Marc Hopkins (Tower) assisted the county with a boat that had floated free. It was recovered and returned to its owner. A couple refused to have their boat inspected for AIS at a landing on Vermilion; they were cited for refusing to submit to inspection. The officer and the Sheriff’s Office conducted a search for two individuals who were reported overdue. The couple were located at a remote back packing campsite and they were fine. It turns out the day they were supposed to come out was misunderstood.
CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked anglers, boaters, taught firearm and boat safety to the Hibbing Safety Town program, and helped teach a boating safety class in the Grand Rapids station. The officer worked PWC, aquatic plant, a wolf depredation, and trespass complaints. The officer concluded a case of a PWC lift that had approximately 6,000 zebra mussels on it that had been transported from an infested metro area lake to a Hibbing area lake property. Luckily the lift had not made it in the water. Campers were evicted and cited for not paying for 13 days of camping fees on a remote state forest campground. Enforcement action was taken on angling without a license in possession, unregistered watercraft, fail to display registration, no PFD’s, state forest campground fee payment violation, transport invasive species, fail to drain lake water and transport aquatic plants.
CO Mark Fredin (Aurora) found a few anglers out between rain squalls, most reported slow fishing but a few did well catching walleyes trolling raps. Time was spent working complaint areas of ATV and OHM areas. Violation of no license in possession, operate OHM on roadway, and ATV equipment violation were found.
District 6 – Two Harbors area
CO Sean Williams (Ely 1) reports cool and rainy weather seems to have improved angler success over the week as many anglers have started to report a good walleye bite. Smallmouth bass and northern pike anglers however reported the opposite, and most checked had little luck over the week. Violations included angling without a license in possession, and no lifesaving device onboard a watercraft.
CO Marty Stage (Ely) assisted the SO with a call about someone in the BWCAW sending up flares to signal for an emergency after big winds swept the area. Officer Stage also assisted search and rescue on another BWCAW call for paddlers going through a rapids, capsizing, and losing their canoe, and also assisted the SO administer a search warrant.
CO Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) did a couple of remote ATV patrols into designated trout lakes. The trout and the walleye fishing has really picked up with some nice fish being seen. Officer Fagerman also checked lake accesses and talked with folks about AIS issues.
CO Mary Manning (Grand Marais East) checked area anglers and boaters on Lake Superior and inland lakes. The officer also patrolled campgrounds and cleaned up trash left by irresponsible campers. CO Manning followed up on an ATV complaint and a report of possible birch sapling theft, which was found to be a local person hauling birch logs for firewood.
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked angling, boating, and ATV enforcement throughout the week. One evening while patrolling on Birch Lake activity levels were surprisingly low, but the violation rate was 100%. The mosquito annoyance level at dark was also very high. Violations encountered throughout the week included several instances of fishing without licenses, trout stamps, angling with extra lines, as well as no PFD in a boat.
CO David Schottenbauer (Silver Bay) worked area angling activity this week. High winds kept many from the lakes, but helped with the flies. Time was also spent working area ATV trail activity.
CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked angling and ATV activity during the week. With recent rains have come fresh hatches of biting mosquitos making fishing less enjoyable on the calm evenings. Enforcement action was taken for no angling license, no trout stamp, and failure to activate a burn permit.
District 7 – Grand Rapids area
CO Randy Patten (Northome) checked anglers and boaters, helped with a boat and water safety class, and patrolled for illegal ATV operation. Enforcement action was taken for no angling license in possession.
CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) checked anglers, monitored OHV activity, judged K9 trials, and assisted the county with a suspect that fled into the woods. CO Fairbanks and his K9 partner Si were asked to locate a set of keys thrown in the woods by a fleeing suspect. K9 Si was able to find the keys in the thick brush. Enforcement action was taken for watercraft registration violations, possession of illegal length walleye, and license issues.
CO Sarah Grell (Grand Rapids) worked fishing activity and responded to complaints of fishing violations. She assisted the Sheriff’s Department with a recreational trespass complaint. She instructed the classroom portion of the district’s youth boat & water training day. Enforcement actions were taken for aquatic invasive species violations.
CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) worked anglers over the past week with the area bite heating up with more and more fish in the bag. Enforcement action was taken for not having enough life saving devices aboard a watercraft and angling without a license.
CO Jimmy Van Asch (Hill City) monitored area fishing, boating, and ATV activities. CO Van Asch assisted at a youth Boat & Water Safety class held on Pokegama Lake. Follow up work was completed on pending cases and several nuisance animal complaints were fielded and handled. Assistance was given to Itasca County Sheriff’s Office with a suspect that fled.
District 8 – Duluth area
CO Nick Prachar (Brookston) spent time on the St. Louis River checking angling activity and boating safety with CO Matt Miller. Time was also spent working ATV activity throughout the area.
CO Kipp Duncan (Duluth East) spent the majority of the week working fishing and boating enforcement around the Duluth area. Many people were out enjoying summer attempting to catch fish and recreating. Some time was spent working ATV enforcement and following up on calls for service. Officer Duncan also spent the majority of the work week with a college intern student.
CO Scott Staples (Carlton) spent time patrolling area lakes where violations were found for bow riding, no lights after sunset, registration, and PFD violations. A complaint of animal carcasses dumped on state land is being looked into. One aquatic plant violation was investigated where a person removed lily pads without a permit. Extra patrol was done in area state parks. One person was stopped after found being stopped in the middle of the road. He was found to be in possession of alcohol and under the age of 21. He also had a loaded shotgun in the truck. When asked about the shotgun, he said he just left it in the truck from last fall and never took it out. K9 training continues in preparation for upcoming testing with K9 Schody.
Lake Superior Marine Unit
CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers on the Duluth-Superior Harbor and Lake Superior and shore anglers were also checked on the lakes north of Duluth. AIS enforcement was a priority during the work week. Officer Olson worked ATV enforcement on the forest roads in the Island Lake area.
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Unit) checked anglers and boaters for AIS compliance. A steady lake trout bite on the surface near Duluth has continued. Anglers on the St. Louis River continue to have success with walleyes throughout the river. Enforcement action was taken for ATV and boating violations.
Lake Superior Unit – vacant.