Conservation Officer Weekly Report District-5
CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls #1) reports continuing to assist the Koochiching County Sheriff?s Office with flood relief efforts on Rainy Lake. A youth firearms safety class in Littlefork was held at which 18 area youth received their certification. Other training was attended and miscellaneous animal-related complaints were handled. People are reminded that the no wake zone was continued and extended out to 500 feet from shoreline on Rainy Lake. Please be respectful and careful.
CO Curtis Simonson (International Falls #2) reports spending time this past week checking anglers on Rainy Lake and the Rainy River. Simonson also assisted with a firearms safety class and completed equipment maintenance.
CO John Slatinski IV (Ray) reports fishing reports have become less enthusiastic, and the biting insect population has exploded. Head nets have become the new fashion statement. Water levels are beginning to recede, which is going to expose new hazards on waterways that people have been fortunate to miss. Rock markers have not been installed on all the traditionally marked locations due to water levels. Boat wakes continue to be a common complaint. Whitetail fawns and black bears are beginning to make more appearances in residential areas. Remove all food sources to avoid black bear conflicts. Leave fawns alone as the mother is not far away, and has not abandoned her baby.
CO Troy Fondie (Orr) reports monitoring angling, boating, and ATV activities. Commercial bait trapping activities were checked. Public access sites and area forest roads were visited. Fishing remains slow. Border lakes remain flooded. Equipment work continues. Administrative tasks were completed.
CO Aaron Larson (Tower) worked primarily angling and ATV enforcement throughout the week. He also took several calls regarding bears. The water remains fairly high on Lake Vermilion.
CO Marc Johnson (Hibbing) primarily worked ATV and angling activity. Violations encountered included allowing illegal ATV operation, expired boat/ATV registration, and no angling license in possession. Nuisance-bear reports continue to be fielded and people are reminded to remove/hide food sources (such as bird feeders and garbage cans) to deter bears from coming onto their property.
CO Shane Zavodnik (Virginia) spent time working in the Boundary Waters over the weekend. Most anglers found success targeting walleyes and panfish throughout the area. Due to heavy rainfall this spring, Zavodnik reports an abundance of mosquitos throughout the region, with many campers commenting how thick the bugs have been. Zavodnik took enforcement action in regards to a number of watercraft and angling violations encountered throughout the week.