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WEEKLY DNR ENFORCEMENT REPORT: Lake of the Woods investigation continues, Fishing overlimits etc.

Here is the weekly report from Department of Natural Resources conservation officers in northwest Minnesota for Feb. 10:

 District 1 - Baudette area

CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked snowmobilers in the Warroad and Roseau areas and anglers on Lake of the Woods. A detail was worked with CO Quandt, CO Fritz, CO Arhart, CO Wichmann, and CO Bermel. Despite fishing being slow, officers still encountered multiple anglers being in possession of over limits of walleyes and saugers. Enforcement action was taken on a group of anglers for driving trucks on the GIA (Grand-in-Aid) Snowmobile trail which caused deep rutting in the trail.

CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck) checked anglers on Upper Red Lake, special regulation lakes and monitored area snowmobile trail activity throughout the week. ARMER radio training was attended and time was spent with transferring/distribution/inventory of district equipment. Assistance was given to academy staff for Officer Water Survival training to the MN State Patrol academy cadets. Training was provided at a Youth Snowmobile Safety Course and field day in Kelliher. Enforcement action for the week included angle with extra lines, angling without a license and snowmobile trail sticker violations.  

CO Robert Gorecki (Baudette) monitored fishing and snowmobiling activity throughout the week. Anglers are reporting poor fishing success on Lake of the Woods in most areas. Training was attended during the week and the investigation continued on Lake of the Woods fishing violation cases. Anglers are reminded that the state snowmobile trail is only for snowmobiles. Enforcement action taken during the week included fishing violations and unlawful operation of motor vehicles on the state snowmobile trail.

 Baudette -vacant.

 Blackduck #1 - vacant.

 Karlstad - vacant.

 Warroad #1 - vacant.

 Warroad #2 - vacant.

 District 2 - Bemidji area

 CO Tom Hutchins (Crookston) reports working on a suspected wolf/coyote depredation complaint in Marshall County. Time was also spent riding in the MnUSA VIP snowmobile ride in Mahnomen and attending a training class in Thief River Falls. Snowmobile operators and anglers were also checked.

 CO Tim Gray (Bagley) checked angling and snowmobiling activity.

 CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji) monitored angling activity in the area. Anglers are reporting a slow bite with very few fish observed during checks. CO Vollbrecht worked with CO Holt and CO Mathy during the first Winterfest Celebration on Lake Bemidji. Weather conditions were cold, but several snowmobilers came out for the radar run on the lake. CO Vollbrecht assisted with the MnUSA snowmobile ride in the Mahnomen area. Search warrant and radio refresher training was attended in Thief River Fall. An AIS and minnow trapper training session was attended in Brainerd.

 CO Brian Holt (Bemidji) checked trapping activity, snowmobilers and ice anglers. Officer Holt attended training on aquatic invasive species and bait dealers. He also patrolled Lake Bemidji on snowmobile during the Bemidji Winterfest activities. Enforcement activity included snowmobile registration violations and snowmobiles exceeding the speed limit.

 CO Chris Vinton (Detroit Lakes) reports patrolling for snowmobiles and anglers on area lakes. Some anglers are using the slow fishing and ease of getting around on the lakes to remove their houses. Anglers should be reminded they are responsible for all the litter also. CO Vinton was assisted by CO Oldakowski in removing a fawn that was stuck in a fence. Enforcement action was taken for fail to mark shelters, no licenses in possession, no SSC card, and snowmobile registration violations.

 CO Al Peterson (Osage) continued follow-up on a bobcats out of season case and a pre-employment background investigation file was completed. CO Peterson also checked anglers and worked snowmobile enforcement. The fish bite was slow as was the snowmobile activity.

 CO Gary Forsberg (Pelican Rapids) spent the week checking fishermen and snowmobilers. He also worked predator hunters and followed up on a dogs running loose complaint. CO Forsberg responded to a complaint of a snowmobile left in a party’s yard. It was unknown who it belonged to or where it came from. It turned out to be a mechanical problem and the operator had to leave it there until he was able to haul it away.

 Wetland Resources Enforcement Officer Joe Stattelman spent the week attending minnow dealer AIS training in Brainerd.  Time was spent finishing up a background packet for the upcoming academy applicant pool. WREO Stattelman also assisted area COs with the MnUSA Rendezvous VIP snowmobile run.

 Moorhead - vacant.

 Perham - vacant.

 Natural Resources pilot John Heineman (Bemidji) finished up the elk survey in northwest Minnesota and flew wolf pack counts. Heineman also attended to aircraft maintenance. 

Brad Dokken

Brad Dokken is a reporter and editor of the Herald's Sunday Northland Outdoors pages. Dokken joined the Herald company in November 1985 as a copy editor for Agweek magazine and joined the Herald staff in 1989. He worked as a copy editor in the features and news departments before becoming outdoors editor in 1998. He also writes a blog called Compass Points. A Roseau, Minn., native, Dokken is a graduate of Bemidji State University. 

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