Here are highlights from Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Conservation Officer (CO) reports for the week ending June 8, 2020. The complete report is available at www.dnr.state.mn.us/enforcement/co_report/index.html
CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) reports fishing success has yet to pick up substantially. A mixed bag of some walleyes, northern pike and panfish were seen in the live wells. Boaters, ATV riders and AIS were also checked. Mathy followed up on reports of a nuisance bears and a concern about a fawn. A fire investigation was worked on. Enforcement action was taken for illegal-length walleyes, illegal-length pike, angling without a license and boating violations.
CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked anglers, boaters and ATV riders, as well as aquatic species and state park enforcement during a busy holiday weekend on the lakes. Bozovsky taught species identification and wildlife complaints classes. PWC speed violations within 150 feet of shore outnumbered boating violations over the holiday weekend, with one operator not getting it. He was warned one day and was cited within 24 hours for the very same violation. He also felt he should disregard Bozovsky’s order to stop his PWC. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license, illegal-length fish, no state park permit, and numerous boating, invasive species transport and PWC violations.
CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji #1) monitored boating and angling activity on area lakes. The walleye bite has slowed, but the crappie bite has improved. Numerous nuisance-bear complaints and calls about orphaned animals were taken. Individuals are reminded to leave baby animals where they are and not pick them up. Vollbrecht spent time patrolling grant-in-aid ATV trails and state forest roads. He worked Upper Red Lake and observed excellent angling. Most boats had a limit of walleyes, or were close.
CO Amber Ladd (McGregor) patrolled heavy ATV activity in the area. Several OHMs were contacted operating on the roadway. There were numerous youth violations, including operating on the roadway, riding without helmets and no ATV safety. Ladd also located and responded to several illegal burning calls. Several anglers/boaters were contacted on area lakes and she spent time doing extra patrols in the Savanna Portage State Park as well as the Hay Lake Campground. Shore anglers were checked on the Mississippi River as well.
CO Tim Collette (Brainerd West) checked many anglers over the holiday weekend, assisted with an ATV detail at the Spider Lake ATV area, and handled numerous calls. One person on the busy Gull Lake chain was upset that boats and personal watercrafts were ruining their ability to enjoy their quiet bay of the lake, and another had scooped up some just-hatched wood ducks that they thought were loon chicks, away from the water.
CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls #1) reports a very busy Memorial Day weekend with lots of people enjoying the nice weather on Rainy Lake. The closing of the Canadian border has kept people on the U.S. waters, which made areas of the lake very busy. Some, in fact, were the busiest Kittelson has ever seen. Enforcement action for the week included no angling license, no boat registration, illegal-length walleye, and extra lines.