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Wrong 'wild' life observed in management area by CO - MnDNR CO Reports

Area MnDNR Conservation Officer Weekly Reports - Oct. 9, 2018 District 12 - Princeton area Conservation Officer (CO) Mike Krauel (Mora) was part of a site visit on a new piece of a Wildlife Management Area (WMA) and followed up on WMA parking are...

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District 12 - Princeton area: Conservation Officer (CO) Mike Krauel (Mora) was part of a site visit on a new piece of a Wildlife Management Area (WMA) and followed up on WMA parking area complaints. While parked at one WMA, Krauel observed two individuals pull up in a car and park near him. Several minutes later, Krauel observed smoke and the strong odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle. The individuals were surprised to see Krauel when he contacted them. Photo Illustration

Area MnDNR Conservation Officer Weekly Reports - Oct. 9, 2018

District 12 - Princeton area

Conservation Officer (CO) Mike Krauel (Mora) was part of a site visit on a new piece of a Wildlife Management Area (WMA) and followed up on WMA parking area complaints. While parked at one WMA, Krauel observed two individuals pull up in a car and park near him. Several minutes later, Krauel observed smoke and the strong odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle. The individuals were surprised to see Krauel when he contacted them. Krauel took calls of individuals hunting ducks out of season and also worked shiners. Enforcement action taken for the week included possession of marijuana, taking ducks out of season, and fishing without a license. He also spent the week checking anglers and small-game hunters.

CO Angela Londgren (Cambridge) checked hunters, anglers, and ATV riders. Complaints were taken on after-hours shooting, trespass, litter, and dogs chasing deer. Londgren also completed a background investigation.

District 2 - Bemidji area

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CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji #1) monitored angling and boating activity. Waterfowl numbers have increased and hunters were checked. Complaints of dogs chasing deer were taken and investigated. He worked with a Leech Lake Tribal CO on a TIP complaint of an individual taking deer out of season. Vollbrecht responded to a TIP call of an individual fishing after revocation.

CO Angie Warren (Mahnomen) worked small-game and waterfowl-hunting activity. Angling and boating activity were monitored with a few anglers finding fish for the bucket. Areas were patrolled for ATV and off-road vehicle activity. Warren attended a Minnesota Deer Hunters Association meeting in Detroit Lakes and provided information about deer-hunting regulations during a question-and-answer session. A security detail was worked in Bemidji. Areas were patrolled for shining activity.

District 4 - Walker area

CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) reports anglers and archery deer, duck and grouse hunters were out in the field. Limited success was seen and reported. Reports of nuisance beavers, an injured porcupine, illegal deer stands, and aquatic plant violations were received. Mathy taught several days at the Cass Lake firearms safety class.

CO Randy Posner (Staples) worked on fishing enforcement this past week. The bite remains slow. He checked boats for AIS violation. Violations detected were weeds on trailers and zebra mussels on pontoon boats coming off of Fish Trap Lake. He also worked on a report of a dock service provider not cleaning his barge. The report was unfounded. Posner worked on a deer baiting case with CO Joyce Kuske. He checked duck hunters and found a violation of no state stamp in possession and another hunter shooting a nongame bird. He worked on complaints of ATVs operating after dark in the closed Pillsbury State Forest. Posner assisted the Cass County Sheriff’s Office with a burglary in progress northwest of Pillager.

District 9 - Brainerd area

CO Chelsey Best (Crosslake) worked duck and small-game hunters during the week. Many people were also out enjoying the damp weather for ATV rides. Assistance was provided with nuisance bear problems and a firearms safety class was put on in the Remer station.

CO Eric Sullivan (Pequot Lakes) and COC Annette Kyllo spent a varied week contacting waterfowl and turkey hunters and some anglers, among other calls. One of the week’s contacts involved a person turkey hunting without a license. The man initially stated he was only hunting coyotes. After investigation the evidence showed he was turkey hunting and enforcement action was taken. Other violations detected were hunting waterfowl with an unplugged shotgun and possession of illegal-length fish.

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CO Jim Guida (Brainerd East) worked with other Division staff during conservation officer candidate interviews. Guida received a call regarding a large K9 hit by vehicle in a neighboring station that turned out to be a coyote. Guida continued an investigation of an illegal swan shooting during the waterfowl season.

CO Bob Mlynar (Aitkin) worked archery deer hunting, waterfowl and grouse hunting activity. Illegal cross-country ATV activity was also addressed.

CO Tim Collette (Brainerd) investigated TIP calls of deer baiting, monitored boat landings for aquatic invasive species issues, checked anglers and small-game hunters, and checked ATVs. One ATV operator earned a citation for careless operation for travelling forest roads in a state forest at speeds in excess of 50 miles per house while small-game hunters and other recreational ATV operators were using the same roads. The operator narrowly missed hitting Collette when he came speeding around a corner.

CO Patrick McGowan (Pine River) patrolled for hunting activity throughout the week. McGowan also attended training at Camp Ripley. Enforcement action was taken for multiple violations including one individual arrested for DWI.

CO Scott Fitzgerald (CCSRA) reports checking for small- and big-game hunting activity throughout the week and weekend. A call of a dead deer on someone’s property was investigated and many outdoor law-related questions were answered. Fitzgerald participated in a Coffee with a Cop event in Crosby and assistance was given to a local agency on a call for service. A TIP on a waterfowl-hunting complaint was taken and patrol was done in the recreation area for violations. A park violation case was finished and charges were forwarded to the county attorney’s office.

District 10 - Mille Lacs area

CO Gregory Verkuilen (Garrison) checked hunting activity. The cool weather appeared to move some ducks through and minimize insect issues for bowhunters. He also assisted with interview panels for the CO hiring process.

CO Dustie Speldrich (Willow River) attended the funeral for Correctional Officer Parise with the LEMA Honor Guard. She investigated possible illegal shining and shooting of deer. Speldrich received complaints of road hunting for small game and nuisance animals.

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CO Dan Starr (Onamia) worked on bear hunting follow up and a road kill bear permit. The cooler fall weather is bringing out numerous animals on the road. ATV and deer season items were addressed by Starr, along with small-game hunting checks.

CO Luke Croatt (Wealthwood) handled complaints of dogs chasing deer, trespass and stands left overnight in a WMA. Car kill deer permits were also issued. Time was also spent checking waterfowl hunting activity.

District 11 - St. Cloud area

CO Joyce Kuske (Little Falls) issued animal possession permits and picked up an eagle that was hit on the road. While checking anglers on the Mississippi River, she asked one what he was fishing for. He said smallmouth bass. Kuske asked the angler if he liked to keep them and the angler readily admitted he ate them and had recently caught one and cooked it. The angler was surprised to find out that smallmouth bass season was catch-and-release only from Sept. 10 to Feb. 24, 2019. While Kuske was working with CO Randy Posner, an archery deer hunter was found hunting with the use of an apple-scented mineral block that was also in the CWD closed feeding zone. The hunter left the area with a baiting ticket and was short one crossbow.

CO Caleb Silgjord (Sauk Centre) finishing training with COC Kampa. The two spent time during the week monitoring angling activity in the station. There was a decent walleye bite on one area lake. Time was also spent following up on a littering complaint and a turtle-trapping investigation. A public waters violation was also investigated after a large amount of fill was found in a protected public water. Silgjord and Kampa also attended a work detail in the Long Prairie station with a handful of other officers. Violations for the week included more than one walleye over 20 inches in possession, no PFD, and no license in possession.

CO Todd VanderWeyst (Paynesville) worked on computer maintenance, administrative tasks, and attended training. He took calls about waterfowl-hunting violations and nuisance animals. He also addressed a fire that included prohibited materials.

CO Frank Rezac (St. Cloud) checked anglers and archery deer and waterfowl hunters. The latter had little success, but good compliance with regulations was observed.

CO Keith Bertram (Long Prairie) spent the week checking anglers and hunters. Enforcement action was taken for license violations, failure to validate a deer tag, and insufficient boating safety equipment. Shining and burning complaints were worked. Cease and desist orders were also issued on two new wetland violations.

Aviation Section

NR Pilot Brad Maas (Brainerd) worked on fall flight planning and administrative tasks. He also worked on the aerial fish stocking tank and completed a night refresher flight with another pilot. He attended the annual moose survey planning meeting where preparations were made for the January 2019 survey.

NR Pilot John Heineman (Bemidji) flew a training mission and attended a moose meeting in preparation for the upcoming moose helicopter surveys in January. Poor weather canceled photo and telemetry flights during the week.

CO Pilot Jason Jensen (Brainerd) reports continued fish-stocking operations in northeastern Minnesota remote lakes. Jensen also flew a night rotary currency flight and assisted the Cass County Sheriff’s Office with a burglary in progress call during this same training flight.

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Joe Albert, Communications coordinator | Division of Enforcement

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