DNR Enforcement report: Declining snowmobile conditions, Ice fishing reports etc.

Here is the weekly report from Department of Natural Resources conservation officers in northwestern Minnesota for March 8: District 1 - Baudette area CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked area angling and snowmobile activity. Maintenance was performed ...

Here is the weekly report from Department of Natural Resources conservation officers in northwestern Minnesota for March 8:

District 1 - Baudette area

CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked area angling and snowmobile activity. Maintenance was performed on the station snowmobile and anglers were checked on Lake of the Woods. He presented the law portion of the Snowmobile Safety Class in Greenbush and Lancaster.

CO Jeff Birchem (Baudette) checked angling and snowmobile activity on Lake of the Woods. The warm weather has started to make the lake sloppy. Fishing remains slow on the shoreline, with better fishing coming off the mid-lake areas. CO Birchem began documenting fish houses that are frozen on the ice and completed a litter investigation. Enforcement action was taken on misc fishing violations.

CO Angie Warren (Thief River Falls) patrolled area snowmobile trails for activity. The recent warm weather has started to deteriorate trails. A call was received from a concerned citizen that standing water on the Red Lake River would freeze ice houses down. Removal of fish houses was monitored as was angling activity. CO Warren received calls of injured deer. The Law and Ethics portion of snowmobile safety was taught in Grygla. Preparations for possible spring flooding were conducted including maintenance on watercraft and trailers.


CO Brice Vollbrecht (Blackduck) monitored snowmobile activity in the area. Area trails were in excellent condition at the beginning of the week, but quickly deteriorated with the warm temperatures and sun. A few anglers are still venturing out onto Red Lake and having limited success with crappies. A Red Lake Advisory Committee meeting was attended and walleye regulations for the upcoming open water season were discussed. CO Vollbrecht also attended a Beltrami County Technical Committee meeting and discussed area wetland violations. Maintenance on station equipment was performed.

CO Robert Gorecki (Baudette) spent the week monitoring fishing activity. Anglers reported fair fishing, but excellent weather throughout the week. Snowmobiling activity was also monitored as riders took to local trails. CO Gorecki attended a citizen's advisory committee meeting where new regulation options for Upper Red Lake were discussed. Violations encountered during the week included angle without a license, angle with extra lines, unattended lines, over limit of northern pike, expired snowmobile registration, unlawful operation of an ATV by a juvenile, no snowmobile trail stickers, littering, and drug possession charges.

Karlstad - vacant.

Warroad #2 - vacant.

District 2 - Bemidji area

CO Stuart Bensen (Erskine) reports melting snowmobile trails in the area, and snowmobile activity has slowed. Fish houses are being removed from the lakes. Trespass complaints by coyote hunters and reports of dead coyotes left in the road ditch were investigated. Questions about Firearm Safety Class schedules are coming in.

CO Dan Malinowski (Fosston) assisted other law enforcement agencies with snowmobile crash investigations. A wolf depredation complaint was investigated. Snowmobile activity is slowing as the snowmobile trail conditions deteriorate. Anglers are having better success and the fish houses are being removed from area lakes.

CO Tim Gray (Bagley) assisted Clearwater County with an incident at a school where threats of violence were received. Angling, fish house removal, and snowmobile activity was monitored.


CO Mike Hruza (Bemidji) monitored fish house removal activity, and checked anglers and snowmobiles. The officer assisted the Bemidji Darkhouse Association with a kids fishing tournament. A complaint of an injured bear was received. Upon arrival at the scene, the officer observed a bear sitting in the road ditch. There were no visible signs of injury so the officer watched the bear for a while. As the sun went down the bear entered a nearby culvert. It's believed the culvert was the bear's winter home and the bear just came out to enjoy a warm sunny day.

CO Stacey Sharp (Bemidji) checked anglers and snowmobilers. Snowmobile trail conditions are deteriorating. Angling success continues to be slow, with some perch being taken. Complaints of dogs chasing deer continue to be received.

CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports deteriorating snowmobile trail conditions and lots of water in the road ditches. Panfish and tullibee anglers are finding some fish. Enforcement action was taken for litter, no fishing license, and leaving a shelter on a public access.

CO Phil Seefeldt (Moorhead) reports deteriorating snowmobile trail conditions. Many areas have standing water. Travel conditions on area lakes have become more difficult due to heavy slush. Complaints of snowmobile trespass and a sick deer were investigated. Enforcement action was taken for fish houses left on the ice after the deadline and fish houses left on public accesses. Preparations for a possible flood in the area are underway.

CO Joe Stattelman (Detroit Lakes) checked anglers and snowmobilers. Melting snow has made access to some lakes difficult. Anglers are catching some panfish and tullibee. Snowmobilers were trying to get in a ride before trail and snow conditions deteriorated too much. The officer spoke to three school classes about wild animals and conservation officer duties. A Use of Force instructor meeting was attended at Camp Ripley.

CO Al Peterson (Osage) spoke to a high school wildlife management class. Shelter removal from area lakes was monitored, and anglers checked. Angler success is improving.

CO Gary Forsberg (Pelican Rapids) monitored fish house removal from area lakes. Angling and snowmobile activity is slowing. Complaints of shooting from the road and illegal raccoon trapping were investigated. The officer assisted North Dakota Game and Fish Officer with an investigation.

Related Topics: FISHING
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