WEEKLY DNR ENFORCEMENT REPORT: Slow pheasant opener, Wetland violations etc.

Here is the weekly report from Department of Natural Resources conservation officers in northwest Minnesota for Oct. 13: District 1 - Baudette area CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked waterfowl hunters on Thief Lake, Roseau River pools, and Lake of th...

Here is the weekly report from Department of Natural Resources conservation officers in northwest Minnesota for Oct. 13:

District 1 - Baudette area

CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked waterfowl hunters on Thief Lake, Roseau River pools, and Lake of the Woods. Hunting success is still good; however, we are still awaiting the bluebill migration to occur. An interview was done with a local radio station regarding the upcoming early youth deer season. Enforcement action was taken on a hunter who was motoring and shooting from his boat at the same time.

CO Jeremy Woinarowicz (Thief River Falls) completed training with a Conservation Officer Candidate (COC) and conducted equipment maintenance. CO Woinarowicz investigated a deer baiting case, assisted North Dakota Game and Fish with an ongoing investigation, and continued two Wetland Conservation Act violation investigations. Enforcement action for the week included ATV operation violations and WMA violations.

CO Traci Hanson (Thief River Falls) responded to a trespass complaint, worked ATV enforcement, and checked waterfowl and grouse hunters. Information was provided to a homeowner on a neighborhood bear problem. Injured deer calls were taken and shining activity was worked.


CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck) reports checking anglers on special regulation lakes, waterfowl hunters, small game hunters, monitoring AIS compliance and ATV activity on area trails throughout the week. A shining detail was worked with neighboring officers with enforcement action taken for shining during restricted hours and unlawfully transporting a loaded, uncased firearm. Time was spent investigating a report of shooting waterfowl during closed hours, assistance was given to DNR Wildlife with the report of an injured eagle which was captured and sent to the Raptor Center for evaluation and possible rehabilitation and car killed deer possession permits were issued. Enforcement action for the week included unlawfully transporting loaded firearms violations and Federal Waterfowl Stamp violations.

Baudette #1 -vacant.

Baudette #2 -vacant.

Blackduck #2 - vacant.

Karlstad - vacant.

Warroad #1 - vacant.

Warroad #2 - vacant.

District 2 - Bemidji area


CO Tom Hutchins (Crookston) and a COC have been working waterfowl hunters, big game hunters, small game hunters and fishermen. Several nuisance beaver complaints were investigated. A suspected public waters violation investigation was started. The officers spent time educating waterfowl hunters about AIS laws as they pertain to duck hunting equipment. A large permitted CRP fire was checked. Enforcement action was taken for hunting waterfowl without a federal duck stamp, fishing without an angling license, hunting without a license in possession and taking a prairie chicken without a license. The officers seized the prairie chicken. A green-winged teal and American coot were seized for being taken illegally.

CO Dan Malinowski (Fosston) worked AIS, ATVs, waterfowl, and deer archery hunters. He responded to TIP calls, car kills, problem beaver, trespass and possible wolf depredation that is believed to be coyote.

CO Tim Gray (Bagley) checked hunters, investigated a wolf depredation and answered calls on upcoming firearms deer season.

CO Brian Holt (Bemidji) checked waterfowl and other small game hunting activity. Officer Holt also checked on ATV activity in the Mississippi Headwaters State Forest. Time was spent working with neighboring officers on a special detail. Enforcement action related to illegal deer shining activity.

CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports checking waterfowl, grouse and archery deer hunters. He assisted CO Oldakowski (Wadena) with a vandalism investigation on a WMA and issued several car killed deer permits. CO Vinton assisted the State Patrol with a person that had gone off the road and then refused to get out of the vehicle. Dogs chasing deer complaints were also investigated. Enforcement action was taken for over limit of ducks and license issues.

CO Al Peterson (Osage) and a COC spent time working waterfowl and small game hunters. Focus was again placed on AIS education and enforcement while checking hunters with watercrafts and decoys. However, hunter numbers and waterfowl numbers were way down from previous weeks. Violations for the week included transporting loaded firearms.

CO Gary Forsberg (Pelican Rapids) reports a slow pheasant opener with less than a bird per hunter average. Dry and windy conditions, along with a lot of corn still standing, made hunting tough. Duck hunters report slower success. Time was also spent on waters violations and shooting to close to residence complaint.

CO Angie Warren (Detroit Lakes) monitored angling on area waters. Waterfowl and small game hunting activity was worked. CO Warren investigated calls of possible illegal waterfowl hunting including closed areas and closed hours.


WREO Joe Stattelman spent the week focusing efforts on Wetland Conservation Act and Public Waters cases. Much of the week was spent working on a background investigation for the CO Prep program.

Moorhead - vacant.

CO Pilot Chris Lofstuen (Bemidji) flew an aircraft to Crystal and back for maintenance. Wolf telemetry was conducted as was a photo flight for wetlands evidence gathering. A potential wetlands violation was noted and forwarded to the area conservation officer.

NR Pilot John Heineman (Bemidji) flew fisher, wolf, and marten telemetry. Heineman also flew Thief Lake and Roseau duck surveys. Forest Assessment photo flights were canceled twice due to low clouds.


Brad Dokken joined the Herald company in November 1985 as a copy editor for Agweek magazine and has been the Grand Forks Herald's outdoors editor since 1998.

Besides his role as an outdoors writer, Dokken has an extensive background in northwest Minnesota and Canadian border issues and provides occasional coverage on those topics.

Reach him at, by phone at (701) 780-1148 or on Twitter at @gfhoutdoor.
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