District 9 Conservation Officer Reports
CO Nate Benkofske (McGregor) reports checking boaters on area lakes. Nuisance-animal calls were handled. Benkofske also attended the Minnesota Trappers Association convention. The event was held in Barnum over the weekend and many questions from the public were answered.
CO Jim Guida (Brainerd East) patrolled for ATV violations and followed up on more aquatic plant removal complaints. Another lakeshore owner was interviewed on the use of an unpermitted herbicide to remove the entire lot width of aquatic vegetation. The owner faces a large fine and restoration of the aquatic vegetation as required by DNR aquatic plant management staff. Guida contacted a youth operator of an off-highway motorcycle operating on park property in the city of Brainerd. The operator returned home and dad was contacted on the enforcement action. A complaint of deer feeding in the CWD zone was investigated and the homeowner indicated that his wife likes to watch the deer eat. Guida advised the individual to remove the grain and cease any further feeding.
CO Chelsey Best (Pequot Lakes) is still dealing with illegal fires, littering and abandoned camping materials in the Foothills State Forest. Enforcement action was taken this week for no helmets, operating on a closed forest road, operating on a state highway and riding on a boat transom while the boat was underway. An ATV club meeting was also attended in Hackensack.
CO Tony Flerlage (Crosby) served with the DNR Honor Guard at the funeral for Montgomery Police Officer Bryan Tupy. He also worked the booth at the Minnesota Trappers Association convention in Barnum. It was great to talk to trappers about the upcoming season. Flerlage also took nuisance-bear complaints.
CO Eric Sullivan (Brainerd) checked anglers and recreational boating activity on area lakes. Anglers reported that fishing success was limited. Sullivan also conducted interviews with people involved in a litter incident.