Here are highlights from Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Conservation Officer (CO) reports for the week ending xxx 2014. The complete report is available at www.dnr.state.mn.us/enforcement/co_report/index.html

CO Mike Fairbanks (Deer River) checked anglers, monitored trapping activity, worked OHV enforcement and responded to an ATV accident. Fairbanks and his K9 partner Si also assisted in locating evidence for a case in which three eagles had been shot and assisted a deputy involved in a foot pursuit in which the suspect ran into a house. Two suspects were arrested for outstanding warrants. Enforcement action was taken for license issues, illegal-length walleyes, expired registration on watercraft, no throwable and illegal-length northern pike.

CO Jacob Willis (Brookston) assisted local agencies at the scene of a plane crash in the water near Moose Lake. Willis reports very heavy angling and boating activity was worked on the St. Louis River during opening weekend.  Enforcement action was taken for no license in possession, no Type IV PFD, no angling license and other equipment issues.

CO John Slatinski (Ray) continued to monitor trapping, OHV use, state campgrounds, fire activity, and – the highlight of the week – the statewide fishing opener. A report of damage to a state trail was received along with an unattended fire that was located and was associated with the same incident. There was an uptick in state campground use with the fishing opener. Trapping complaints were received and investigated. Weather for the fishing opener was among the best in recent memory, according to anglers in the area. Most of the anglers encountered were happy to be once again fishing open water and most reported success of varying degrees. Some said all they could find were fish too big to keep.

CO Don Bozovsky (Hibbing) worked the fishing opener and ATVs, dealt with a complaint of a large number of walleye carcasses dumped in the woods, investigated a dead bear complaint in a front yard and met with the SWCD and BWSR on a wetland-fill case. Fishing success was fair over opening weekend with some large northern pike and respectable walleyes taken. Enforcement action was taken for no fishing license in possession, wanton waste, unregistered ATV, no PFDs, and boat registration violations.

CO Sean Williams (Ely #1) reports fishing opener was the usual boom or bust depending on which lake you were on. Most anglers found at least some success, but that varied between two or three 12- to 13-inch walleyes to nearly a limit of 17- to 18-inch fish. Violations included angling without a license in possession, no PFD, and illegal slot fish.

CO Tim Collette (Brainerd) checked anglers over the opening weekend. Crappies were biting better than walleyes. A detail was worked on Leech Lake and Collette followed up on a turkey-hunting complaint where multiple extra turkeys were shot and not tagged or registered. Citations were issued and a gun and the illegally taken turkeys were seized.

CO Jacob Willis (Brookston) assisted local agencies at the scene of a plane crash in the water near Moose Lake. Willis reports very heavy angling and boating activity was worked on the St. Louis River during opening weekend.  Enforcement action was taken for no license in possession, no Type IV PFD, no angling license and other equipment issues.

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