District 10 - Mille Lacs area

Last updated: 2015-12-01

CO Scott Fitzgerald (Malmo) reports checking some muzzleloader hunters and also some late season small game hunters over the weekend. Several areas of a WMA were walked in regards to a complaint of stands left overnight in it. Trapping activity was monitored throughout the Malmo station and many trapping related law questions were fielded throughout the week and weekend. The Officer also checked for late season waterfowl hunters and found most area smaller water was already frozen over. Some fishermen were checked around the Mille Lacs Lake area who were trying their hand at some late season fishing. A call from the local sheriff?s office about a deer found in a vehicle they had seized was investigated and found to be a legally shot deer. The Officer also took a call of an injured loon up in the McGregor area. The loon was picked up and transported to the Garrison Vet Clinic. Lots of muzzleloader, trapping, fishing and ATV related law questions were fielded throughout the week and weekend.

CO Dustie Speldrich (Willow River) followed up on deer season investigations. She received calls regarding dumped deer carcasses, nuisance beaver issues, car kill bear and harvesting of firewood in state forests. She also worked on a background investigation for a potential new hire. Anglers are reporting a good early ice bite on area lakes. Please take extra precautions regarding ice safety and wear your PFDs.

CO Dan Starr (Onamia) worked on deer season issues that still lingered. Ice fishing has started with some small pike and panfish showing up. Ice fishermen were a little too eager to get out in CO Starr?s opinion, with 3 inches of ice near open flowing water. Duck hunters are complaining about muskie fisherman ruining their hunt. Muzzleloader is under way, with very few hunters observed out. An illegal fire was also looked into.

CO Bret Grundmeier (Hinckley) and a Conservation Officer Candidate (COC) followed up on investigations from deer season relating to ATV?s in a WMA. CO Grundmeier and the COC began to find trapping activity and took enforcement action involving illegal snaring equipment and untagged traps. Trappers were reminded the importance of measuring your snares to ensure incidental catches of non-targeted species does not occur. Comments were heard from a handful of deer hunters that thought registering a deer was not important or not required. Deer registration information is important and registering a harvested deer within 48 hours is required by law. Deer hunters are reminded for the upcoming muzzleloader season to have proper licenses on their person and to register harvested deer within 48 hours.

CO Eugene Wynn (Pine City) spent time answering questions about trapping, deer season, and concerns with trespassing neighbors. He checked state forest areas, WMAs and public accesses throughout the area for activity. Cold weather has brought the first signs of ice on local lakes. Anglers are urged to wait for more cold weather before venturing on ice in the Pine City area.

CO Luke Croatt (Wealthwood) checked trapping activity and investigated a dog chasing deer complaint. A few hunters were contacted on opener of the muzzleloader season. Most reported seeing few deer. Some smaller lakes are freezing over and it is important to remember that early ice is dangerous so use caution.