Outdoor Report: Rains change wetland habitat, waterfowl hunting conditions in northeast North Dakota
Lake of the Woods
Fall fishing is excellent, with good numbers of walleyes continuing to hold in 28 feet to 30 feet of water in Lighthouse Gap past the mouth of the Rainy River, according to the latest report from Lake of the Woods Tourism. Good reports also are coming from Zippel Bay, Long Point, Rocky Point and Garden Island.
Flows in the Rainy River have increased with recent rains, and emerald shiners are running. Good walleye reports are coming from Four-Mile Bay and areas upstream from Baudette, Minn., Lake of the Woods Tourism said.
Devils Lake waterfowl update
Heavy rains -- 3 inches to 5 inches in some locations -- beginning Friday, Sept. 20, changed wetland habitat significantly in northeast North Dakota, according to Mark Fisher, district wildlife biologist for the U.S. Fish in Wildlife Service in Devils Lake. The rain is creating difficult access for waterfowl hunters in areas such as fields and prairie trails, Fisher said.
As expected, ducks and geese have begun to spread out and are taking advantage of newly flooded habitat. Resident hunters generally did well during last weekend’s waterfowl opener, Fisher said, with most hunters shooting mixed bags of ducks and Canada geese. The outlook for this weekend’s nonresident waterfowl opener is promising, Fisher said, but scouting will be a major prerequisite for success.
Fall colors update
Northwest Minnesota: Increasing amounts of red and orange are showing, the Department of Natural Resources said Thursday in its fall colors update. The eastern two-thirds of Roseau County, part of Marshall County, all of Lake of the Woods County and the northern half of Beltrami County are at 50% to 75% color. The rest of northwest Minnesota is at 25% to 50% color, with a pocket of 10% to 25% color in western Marshall, Pennington and Red Lake counties.
Turtle River State Park near Arvilla, N.D.: Trees are at 60% to 70% color, the park reported Wednesday on its Facebook page. Many of the trees with leaves that turned before last weekend’s heavy rains have fallen.
Northern Red River Valley: Yellows are showing in 20% to 30% of the trees, according to the latest fall foliage report from North Dakota Tourism.
Pembina Gorge: Red, orange, lime and rust colors are showing in 50% to 60% of the trees, North Dakota Tourism reports.
Devils Lake: About 50% of the trees have started showing yellows and reds, according to North Dakota Tourism.
-- Herald staff reports