Brad Dokken is editor of the Herald's Northland Outdoors section and also works as a copy editor and page designer. 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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Q. I enjoyed following the story of the guy who paddled a giant pumpkin on the Red River from Grand Forks to Oslo, Minn. How does he get the pumpkins to grow so large, and can pretty much any pumpkin reach that size? A. The story indeed was a hoot. For those who may have missed it, Rick Swenson of Fergus Falls, Minn., paddled a 1,086-pound giant pumpkin from Grand Forks to Oslo to set the unofficial Guinness World Record for longest distance paddled in a pumpkin.
Brett Anderson, 14, of Northwood, N.D., released this 35½-inch catfish Sept. 18 on the Red River. He is a freshman at Northwood Public School.
To get an event in the calendar, contact Brad Dokken at (701) 780-1148, (800) 477-6572 ext. 148 or by email at email@example.com . Deadline is 5 p.m. Thursdays. Hunting
A friend mentioned these GPS maps earlier this week, saying the HUNT Chip onXmap he recently purchased has become a favorite. Based in Missoula, Mont., the makers of onXmaps have created a hunting map with color-coded, land ownership designations made for GPS, mobile and computer use. Every parcel of land has a unique color to easily identify a change in ownership, offering the look and feel of BLM, Forest Service and plat book maps.
Last week's column on the North Dakota Game and Fish Department's Private Land Open to Sportsmen or PLOTS program generated some questions about other agency efforts to work with private landowners. The PLOTS program falls under the Game and Fish Department's Private Land Initiative, which is designed to work with private landowners on managing wildlife and wildlife habitat. The PLI has three main goals. • Conserve habitat for fish and wildlife populations.
Terry Anderson of Warren, Minn., and neighbor Brad Adamski had been hoping to catch a tagged catfish all summer, so when Anderson spotted a yellow tag on the 36-inch, 18½-pound catfish he landed Sept. 11 on the Red River, the excitement began to build. Little did he know it would trigger a mystery that would take nearly a month to solve. Anderson says he almost overlooked the yellow tag inserted into the catfish near the dorsal fin because it looked like a piece of straw. Then he took a closer look and saw "DNR FISHERIES 327."
Q. I'm in the market for a new ice auger and have been hearing a lot about the ION and other battery-powered augers now on the market. What do you know about them, and have you ever used one? A. I don't have any experience with other electric augers, but I tried an ION last winter and absolutely loved it. I bought one a couple of weeks later.
To get an event in the calendar, contact Brad Dokken at (701) 780-1148, (800) 477-6572 ext. 148 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org . Deadline is 5 p.m. Thursdays. Events • Oct. 25: DNR Northwest Region Fall Oral Bid Auction, Beltrami County Administration Building, 701 Minnesota Ave. NW, Bemidji. Ten parcels in Cass, Clearwater and Hubbard counties. Registration, 12:30 p.m., with auction at 1 p.m. Info: www.dnr.state.mn.us/lands_minerals/landsale/index .
NDGF completes fall fish surveys The North Dakota Game and Fish Department's annual fall survey of young-of-the-year fish yielded relatively strong catches of young walleyes in Devils Lake, the department said. Game and Fish stocked 1.7 million walleye fingerlings this past spring in the Devils Lake Basin. The annual surveys evaluate natural reproduction and stocking success across the state.
BELTRAMI ISLAND STATE FOREST, Minn.—Driving down a sandy stretch of the Black's Winner Forest Road, Charlie Tucker pointed out a sea of big bluestem, a prairie grass not typically associated with pine forests. Until after a wildfire. "This is one of the larger open areas that have been created here," said Tucker, assistant manager of Red Lake Wildlife Management Area at Norris Camp south of Roosevelt, Minn. "It looks like a prairie, doesn't it?"