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Boreal Community Media

Weekly Conservation Officer Reports for Northeast Minnesota

Jun 07, 2023 10:54AM ● By Content Editor
Photo: Boreal Community Media 

From the MN Department of Natural Resources - June 7, 2023

Two Harbors area

CO Sean Williams (Ely #1) patrolled areas within the BWCAW over the weekend. Angling success was mixed, and higher water temperatures were found area wide. Violations included unregistered watercraft, no PFD on a watercraft, and angling without a license.

CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Grand Marais) monitored anglers and boating activity on area lakes. Time was also spent in the BWCAW checking anglers. Enforcement action was taken for angling, watercraft and burning violations.

CO Hudson Ledeen (Grand Marais #2) reports that anglers are having more success as water temperatures continue to rise. Black flies, mosquitos, and no-see-ums are out in droves. Nuisance bears continue to be a problem. Please keep garbage, grills and any other items that may attract bears in an inaccessible location.

CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked a busy week of angling enforcement in and out of the BWCAW. Success for most species was moderate to good with the rapidly increasing water temperatures. Time was also spent on AIS and ATV enforcement. Enforcement action for the week included a couple walleye overlimits, several extra-line violations, insufficient PFDs, and cans in the BWCAW.

CO Matt Miller (Silver Bay) checked ATV trails and accesses and state park users. Angling has been good, but a recent bug hatch has the fish focusing on insects. Dry conditions have continued with increased fire danger. Beaver-related complaints required the issuance of a nuisance beaver permit. Enforcement action was taken for angling and boating violations.

CO Kylan Hill (Tofte) reports continued patrol for ATV and angling activity throughout the week. Compliance was excellent. Hill noticed an uptick in moose sightings and bulls are well on their way with antler growth. BWCA entry points were checked and no violations were seen.

CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked inland lake and stream-angling activity during the week. Bugs were biting as well as the fish this week, so please remember the bug spray. ATV use was high this week as many trails were dry and in good shape, making excellent riding opportunities. Enforcement action was taken for licensing violations.

Ely #2 vacant.

Eveleth area

CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls #1) reports most of the week?s work activity centered around fishing, boating, and invasive species enforcement on Rainy Lake and the Rainy River. Enforcement action was taken for fishing license violations, failure to have the required amount of PFDs on board, and failure to remove a drain plug from a boat while transporting.

CO John Slatinski IV (Ray) reports as the summer season ramps up, activity in the area has also increased. Several wildlife-related calls were taken. Incoming and outgoing traffic was monitored for invasive species compliance. Time was spent at a youth outdoor education day talking about the TIP program and discussing the display that was set up. Campground complaints were checked. Anglers are still reporting good days on the water, although warmer than most would like.

CO Troy Fondie (Orr) reports angling and boating activities were checked over the week. Public access sites were monitored. Equipment work was completed. Spare time was spent checking area forest roads for ATV activity.

CO Aaron Larson (Tower) worked primarily angling and ATV enforcement. Larson spent time on Lake Vermilion and checked other area lakes as well. Larson found violations related to angling licenses, boating safety equipment, and angling with extra lines. Larson observed many anglers transitioning to deeper waters in search of walleyes, with the best times being early mornings or later in the evenings.

CO Marc Johnson (Hibbing) spent the week at Camp Ripley training the cadets of DNR Academy 22. Cadets received their second full week of instruction in defensive tactics and firearms. In addition, time was spent attending a lake association meeting in Side Lake and completing ongoing investigations.

CO Shane Zavodnik (Virginia) spent time working boating safety, angling, and ATV patrol over the week. Several angling and OHV violations were handled over the busy week. He wants to remind watercraft operators to ensure their navigational lights are in working order and other safety equipment is on board prior to going out on the water this summer. Zavodnik also completed a trespass case that resulted in an individual possessing an overlimit of otters.

CO Duke Broughten (Aurora) spent the week monitoring fishing, boating, and ATV activity. Fishing success slowed this week. Anglers reported finding more panfish as water temperatures increased. Boating activity also increased due to warm weather. Broughten also fielded calls regarding boat registration, nuisance animals, and youth ATV requirements.

Cook vacant.

Water Resource Enforcement Officers

WREO Jeff Humphrey (NE) worked public accesses and inspected boats for invasive species compliance. He followed up on pending wetland and waters cases with active restoration orders. He also prepped watercraft equipment for upcoming Academy training.
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