Here are highlights from Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Conservation Officer (CO) reports for the week ending Nov. 4. The complete report is available at www.dnr.state.mn.us/enforcement/co_report/index.html
CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports contacting several archery hunters, a few small-game hunters and what’s left of the waterfowl hunters. Deer are reportedly moving and several car-killed deer permits were issued. Vinton received a couple of complaints of hunters shooting too close to residences. In each case, the hunting parties were not in violation. Hunters should be reminded, though, they are responsible for their shot and to be aware of nearby homes. A complaint of decoys being left out overnight was investigated and it was discovered the responsible hunter was in jail and unable to pick up the decoys. A hunting partner agreed to retrieve them.
CO Shane Zavodnik (Cook) spent time with local conservation officers certifying students in firearms safety at the Indus School District. Despite the snow and winter weather-type conditions, most of the students were attentive and eager to be a part of the field day portion. Complaints were fielded about non-motorized hunting trails being used by motorists who seem to think the trail regulations don’t apply to them. While Zavodnik was on duty, he observed a white trash bag containing plucked ducks dumped on the shore of the Willow River. If anyone has information regarding the violation please call the TIP line at 1-800-652-9093. You can remain anonymous. Zavodnik also observed the last good push of ducks hitting the region with goldeneyes, buffleheads, and bluebills observed on the larger lakes.
CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) primarily checked deer and small-game hunters. Deer-season ATV permits and car-killed deer permits were issued. Complaints of road hunting and trespassing were investigated. Enforcement action was taken for ATV and deer-hunting violations.
CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked ongoing hunting seasons and ATV riders, assisted the Hibbing Police Department with a call about an attempted suicide, investigated two spruce top timber trespass incidents, and spent considerable time documenting baited deer stands for the firearms deer opener. While investigating what was thought to be a trout-fishing-out-of-season issue, Bozovsky located a spruce top theft area and coincidentally found other suspects violating U.S. Forest Service rules, unrelated to the timber trespass. They were turned over to the U.S. Forest Service for enforcement action. Enforcement action was taken for transporting a loaded firearm, an uncased firearm in the city, discharging a firearm within 500 feet of an occupied building, a blaze orange violation and ATV violations.
CO Thomas Sutherland (Grand Rapids) was busy with giving out road-killed deer possession tags this past week. The deer are really on the move so be careful driving out there during low-light conditions. Enforcement work was done also in preparation for the upcoming deer rifle opener.
CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) checked waterfowl hunters, monitored decorative material harvest, attended meetings and issued permits this past week. Some birds migrated through the area. Enforcement action was taken for license issues and illegal operation of OHV.