Conservation Officer Weekly Report – District 5
CO Darrin Kittelson (International Falls #1) reports ice fishing and spearing activity on Rainy Lake and Lake Kabetogama have been slow because of the frigid temperatures. Snowmobile activity has also been minimal with Saturday being the busiest day. After then it was relatively quiet. Enforcement action for the week involved illegal ATV operations.
CO John Slatinski IV (Ray) reports snowmobiles began to trickle into the area over the weekend, along with snowmobile complaints. Time was spent following up on trespass complaints. The best place to operate snowmobiles is on established trails. When operating off marked trails, remember to respect neighboring landowners and stay off their land if you don?t have permission. Angling and spearing activity continues to bring people onto area lakes. They?re having inconsistent success. Slush has formed on lake surfaces.
CO Troy Fondie (Orr) reports a week of frigid temperatures saw little outdoor activity. Snowmobile activity was monitored. Area lakes were checked and anglers report slow fishing with few fish caught. Area forest roads were checked and public access sites were monitored.
CO Aaron Larson (Tower) worked primarily snowmobile and angling enforcement. Larson came across violations relating to ATV/snowmobile registration and shelter licenses.
CO Marc Johnson (Hibbing) primarily worked angling and snowmobile activity. In addition, time was spent presenting at a snowmobile safety class in Chisholm. Violations encountered included taking fish without an angling license, operating a motor vehicle on a snowmobile trail, expired ATV and snowmobile registration, and no angling license in possession.
CO Shane Zavodnik (Virginia) spent time following up on several big-game violations and patrolling on snowmobile. Zavodnik found that a person had shot a deer without a license and then transported it illegally. Several other violations were also discovered during the investigation. As the busy snowmobile season is approaching, he wants to remind riders to be mindful of their speed on the trails.
CO Duke Broughten (Aurora) spent the week monitoring fishing, trapping, and snowmobile activity. Cold weather appeared to limit recreational activity. Anglers reported limited success. Even with recent snowfall, snowmobile trails are still in poor condition.