District 2 - Bemidji area

CO (Conservation Officer) Tom Hutchins (Crookston) reports checking snowmobile and ATV operators, as well as anglers. License-related violations were encountered.

CO Tim Gray (Bagley) monitored fish house removal and checked trout anglers.

CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji #1) monitored angling activity on area lakes. Time was spent checking perch anglers on Leech Lake.

CO Hannah Mishler (Bemidji #2) checked late-season ice anglers and checked area lakes for the removal of permanent shelters. A BWCA detail was worked with other officers. They checked multiple anglers targeting trout. Enforcement action was taken for various angling-related offenses.

CO Chris Vinton (Perham) reports monitoring fishing activity in the station and assisting the Becker County Sheriff’s Office with a call from a concerned citizen of a possible collapsed portable fish house on the lake for a couple days. The debris turned out to be house wrap from a local construction site. Calls of sick raccoons were taken. People should be aware that raccoons are susceptible to canine and feline distemper and as they come out of hibernation they may appear sick. Questions about possible sick animals may be directed to DNR Wildlife offices.

CO Jake Swedberg (Detroit Lakes) spent the week checking ice anglers. Not many were seen out and about this past week. Other time was spent working on a wolf depredation case in Mahnomen County and assisting Becker County with a few calls for service.

CO Al Peterson (Osage) handled calls of possible deer poaching, worked ongoing cases, and assisted local law enforcement on calls for service.

District 4 - Walker area

CO Randy Posner (Staples) worked fishing enforcement this past week. Sunfish, crappies and walleyes have been the most productive for anglers on area lakes. He worked on snowmobile enforcement issues this past week. One incident involved an abandoned snowmobile in a road ditch. Lake aeration permits and system inspections also received enforcement time. Complaints of deer-carcass dumping and ATVs on snowmobile trails were received.

CO Jacqueline Hughes (Longville) checked angling activity and received a call regarding an injured swan. Enforcement action was taken for failure to display identification on a portable shelter.

CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) reports several anglers are still out on area lakes. Ice conditions have remained in relatively good shape. Mathy investigated two separate complaints of anglers taking an overlimit of crappies and an overlimit of perch. Work continues on items related to the Bear Committee. A litter complaint of someone dumping fish remains in a ditch was investigated.

CO Calie Kunst (Remer) continued working ice fishing, snowmobile and ATV enforcement. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license and failing to renew snowmobile registration. Kunst assisted Aitkin County with an apartment building fire. She also received a call regarding ice-fishing gear left on the lake all day with no one to be found. Upon responding to the call, Kunst found there to be evidence of a snowmobile crash on the lake. The crash was investigated and the fishing gear was linked to the crash.

CO Jordan Anderson (Wadena) spent time during the past week on fishing and recreational vehicle enforcement. WMAs were checked for abandoned property and other issues involving the illegal use of ATVs to access a lake through a WMA.

District 9 - Brainerd area

CO Jim Guida (Brainerd East) worked a remote-lake detail with another CO. They addressed some angling, ATV and snowmobile violations. Guida also fielded his first nuisance-bear complaint.

CO Amber Ladd (McGregor) reports working on the ice for late-season angling activity. A reminder was given to anglers to remove all items from the ice when leaving. Several concerned lake home owners have completed lake clean-ups in the area.

CO Chelsey Best (Crosslake) enforced fishing, trapping and ATV laws this past week. Enforcement action was taken for feeding in a CWD (Chronic Wasting Disease) area, expired registrations and unattended lines. Best is still seeing lots of kids without helmets on Class 2 ATVs. Seatbelts also must be worn if the rider is under 18. Enforcement action was taken for those violations. Best assisted an ATV operator with getting his machine out of the thawed bog on the edge of an area lake where he should not have been operating.

CO Patrick McGowan (Pine River) patrolled for angling activity throughout the past week. He also spent time working Leech Lake and the Whitefish Chain. Enforcement action was taken for shelters being left out past the legal deadline on the ice.

CO Bob Mlynar (Aitkin) worked angling activity and handled a dead eagle. Outdoor topics were also discussed on the local radio station.

CO Eric Sullivan (Pequot Lakes) checked angling activity on area lakes. Sullivan also patrolled the Foot Hills State Forest for illegal ATV operation.

District 10 - Mille Lacs area

CO Gregory Verkuilen (Garrison) checked angler activity. Ice conditions generally are holding up well. Some ATV riders were out but the majority of them were transporting maple sap. Verkuilen also worked on equipment maintenance and answered questions about the new turkey regulations.

CO Dustie Speldrich (Willow River) assisted the sheriff’s office with a call regarding a domestic assault. She patrolled local lakes and received a complaint of a wolf hanging out next to a residence.

CO Dan Starr (Onamia) worked on a possible public waters violation, late-season pike fishing, and panfish activities. A nuisance-bear call came in with the warmer weather. Starr also assisted Morrison County by finding a stolen vehicle. The occupant of the stolen vehicle also had felony warrants and was arrested.

CO Mikeena Mattson (Wealthwood) worked fishing enforcement on Mille Lacs Lake this past week. There was low activity, but those who did get out found the tullibee bite was on. Increasing amounts of ATV activity were observed throughout the week on and around Mille Lacs Lake. Likewise, increasing amounts of campfires were observed throughout the area. She also assisted Aitkin County with a domestic disturbance.

District 11 - St. Cloud area

CO Caleb Silgjord (Sauk Centre) spent time during the past week checking anglers on area lakes. One lake was producing a good crappie bite that drew a sizeable crowd of anglers. A game farm inspection was also conducted.

CO Todd VanderWeyst (Paynesville) worked anglers and ATV activity this past week. He fielded calls about a road-killed fisher and responded to AIS-related questions. He also looked into a possible road-hunting complaint.

CO Adam Seifermann (St. Cloud) reports monitoring the spring crappie and sunfish bite on area lakes. Calls from the public involved miscellaneous wildlife-related called about otters and raccoons. Enforcement action was taken for a parent/guardian responsibility violation and for angling without a license. He also investigated a suspected overlimit/littering/wanton waste call where more than 300 fish were found dumped within the road-right of way in Morrison County. Please contact the TIP line (800-652-909) if you have any information regarding the incident.

District 12 - Princeton area

CO Angela Londgren (Cambridge) checked anglers and ATV riders, followed up on complaints, and investigated illegal burning sites. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license, ATV violations, and burning without a permit.

CO Tony Musatov (Sauk Rapids) checked anglers and worked ATV complaint areas. A dumping complaint was investigated. Follow up was done on a big-game case.

CO Nathan Benkofske (Milaca) checked anglers and patrolled a high-use area in a state forest. A truck went through the ice on a small local lake and has been removed. Several car-injured-animal calls were handled.

Aviation Section

Standby CO Pilot Tim Gray (Bemidji) continued flight training. He looked for ice shelters left on the ice and angling activity.

NR (Natural Resources) Pilot John Heineman (Bemidji) checked on the progress of annual airplane inspection and worked on training.

CO Pilot Jason Jensen (Brainerd) reports flying in support of ice angling enforcement efforts by officers across northern Minnesota. Jensen also flew a station flight so the area officer could see ice conditions across the patrol area.

NR Pilot Brad Maas (Brainerd) worked on continued monitoring of a helicopter in maintenance and plans for getting aircraft radios programmed for the year. He also worked on administrative tasks.

Water Resource Enforcement Officers

WREO (Water Resource Enforcement Officer) Joseph Stattelman (NW) spent the past week checking anglers, working on open cases, patrolling high ATV-use areas, and following up on wildlife-related calls and complaints.

WREO Robert Haberman (North Central) spent the past week working on case files and planning for the 2020 AIS season.

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Prepared by Joe Albert, Communications coordinator | Division of Enforcement