Conservation Officer Report – District 5

Conservation Officer Report – District 5

May 10, 2022 News -- KSDM-KGHS 0

CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls #1) reports the lake sturgeon keep season on the Rainy River ended. The activity was busy with the nice weather and a local tournament being held. People are reminded to make sure they have all their boat safety equipment before going on the water. Enforcement action was taken for illegal-length sturgeon, failure to tag sturgeon, failure to validate a sturgeon tag, taking walleyes in a closed season, and boat safety equipment violations.

CO Curtis Simonson (International Falls #2) reports spending time this week working the Rainy River checking sturgeon anglers. The nice weather had many people out this past week. Anglers reported the sturgeon were biting well. Simonson also responded to a ditch fire and visited a local school this past week. Enforcement action taken this past week consisted of keeping an illegal-length sturgeon, failure to attach a tag to a sturgeon, and insufficient number of PFDs.

CO Troy Fondie (Orr) reports monitoring area forest roads and public access sites. Wolf problems at cattle operations were addressed. Numerous phone calls were responded to on a variety of topics. Equipment work is ongoing. Other time was spent on administrative reporting.

CO Aaron Larson (Tower) primarily worked angling and ATV enforcement. Larson spent time working the active fish run around his station. He addressed violations such as taking walleyes out of season, attempting to take trout out of season, angling without a license, operating an ATV on a highway, spearing a walleye, possessing a spear during closed hours, failure to have a state park permit, allowing youth to violate fish and game laws, and burning violations.

CO Marc Johnson (Hibbing) primarily worked trapping and ATV/OHM enforcement. Beaver-trapping activity picked up over the week as more sets were seen near dams and the waterline. In addition, time was spent with the DNR Aviation Unit partaking in a flight over the Hibbing station and portions of Lake Vermilion. Violations encountered included operating OHMs on public roads, driving after revocation, and minor trapping violations.

CO Shane Zavodnik (Virginia) spent time giving a talk about laws and ethics for a local firearms safety class. He also spent time on the Rainy River checking sturgeon anglers during the week. Zavodnik wants to remind everyone to be cautious when starting fires. This is a time of year where the fire danger can be high.

CO Duke Broughten (Aurora) spent the week monitoring fishing, trapping, and ATV activity. Smaller lakes have opened. ATV activity has increased, however ATV operators are reminded many trails and forest roads are temporarily closed. Broughten fielded calls regarding nuisance bears, trapping regulations, and fishing regulations. Broughten also investigated a grass fire and assisted with a firearms safety class.

Cook vacant.