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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Last year at this time, I wrote a column outlining a series of outdoors goals I hoped to achieve in 2016. I'm not a big fan of New Year's resolutions, which in my opinion are doomed to failure 9 times out of 10, but the goals I set out to achieve in 2016 involved having a good time in the process, so I decided to give it a shot.
Q. Wild turkeys seem to be fairly common in Minnesota. Has this always been the case? A. Historically, wild turkeys are thought to have lived only in far southern Minnesota. By 1880, they had vanished from the state due to unregulated hunting and habitat loss.
A bill to establish a trespass law in North Dakota stands to be among the more prominent pieces of outdoors legislation on tap when lawmakers convene Tuesday. In Minnesota, chronic wasting disease, elk and Department of Natural Resources funding all stand to be on the legislative agenda. Minnesota's 2017 legislative session also gets underway Tuesday. Here's a look at existing or potential outdoors legislation in the two states. North Dakota
North Dakota's first confirmed wolverine since the mid-1800s made news in 2016, and elk research projects were underway on both sides of the Red River. Deer hunters in northwest Minnesota reported better success than the previous year, while more than 51,000 hunters found themselves on the sidelines for North Dakota's deer gun season, despite a slight increase in the number of available tags. Those were just a few of the happenings that made news in the outdoors world during the year just past in Minnesota and North Dakota. Here's a closer look:.
Lake of the Woods Ice fishing is in full swing and remains excellent, Lake of the Woods Tourism reports in its weekly update. The best action has been in 20 feet to 25 feet of water, where glow red or pink rattle spoons tipped with a minnow head or tail have been the best for the jigging line. Use a plain hook or an ice jig with a live minnow for the set line.
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department is proposing a limited trapping season on river otters beginning in November 2017. According to Stephanie Tucker, furbearer biologist for Game and Fish in Bismarck, the quota for the statewide season would be 15 otters. The season would be limited to traps and cable devices and would open in conjunction with other furbearer seasons.
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department is proposing a limited trapping season on river otters beginning in November 2017. According to Stephanie Tucker, furbearer biologist for Game and Fish in Bismarck, the quota for the statewide season would be 15 otters. The season would be limited to traps and cable devices and would open in conjunction with other furbearer seasons. The proposed season would be open from Nov. 27, 2017 through March 15, 2018, but would close early if the 15-otter quota was reached, Tucker said.
Aerial deer surveys set to begin For the first time in about four years, there's enough snow on the ground across North Dakota for the Game and Fish Department to conduct statewide aerial deer surveys. Bill Jensen, big game biologist for Game and Fish in Bismarck, said biologists likely will begin flying Jan. 2. The aerial surveys are one of the tools the department uses to estimate deer populations and, in turn, set deer license numbers for the following hunting season.
BAUDETTE, Minn.—The thought of ice fishing on a morning when the air temperature is 26 below zero might seem like insanity to the uninitiated, but this wouldn't be a day spent outside sitting on a bucket. Besides, as people up here in Lake of the Woods country like to joke, it's a dry cold.
Did you spend any time on the ice last winter spearing in North Dakota? If you did, you were part of a record 4,328 participants who registered to darkhouse spearfish, an increase of nearly 1,000 from 2014-15. One of the likely reasons for that is North Dakota has set records for the number of licensed anglers overall in each of the past four years. And part of the reason for that is that North Dakota has a record number of managed fishing waters with outstanding opportunities for northern pike, the primary quarry in darkhouse spearfishing.