Conservation Officer David Schottenbauer (Silver Bay) worked area ATV and hunting activity. There seems to be a rumor about a law change that allows guns to be loaded while on an ATV going around town. Schottenbauer has been clarifying that the rumor is not true.
Schottenbauer has also been assisting the Lake County Sheriff's Office with lost hikers and motorists following GPS directions into odd places.
CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked small-game activity and took complaints of nuisance beaver activity. Small ponds and lakes had skim ice forming on them, signaling that winter is on its way.
Murray answered questions about the upcoming firearms deer season and took a call of hunter trespass.
CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Tofte) checked area hunting activity. Fall anglers were also checked, animal complaints were handled and a bear-hunting investigation was followed up on.
CO Sean Williams (Ely 1) reports warmer and dry weather finally arrived in Ely over the week and a huge increase in hunting activity was noticed. Grouse numbers were still relatively low, but a few hunters reported a good number of buffleheads and ring-necked ducks.
Williams also assisted the St. Louis County rescue squad and U.S. Border Patrol on Snowbank Lake after a group capsized their canoe in 30 mph winds and 27-degree air temperatures. The group had safely made it to an island, but were wet and very cold. The people and their equipment were located and brought off the lake.
CO Darin Fagerman (Grand Marais) checked designated trout lakes and grouse hunters. He also made sure bear hunters removed their bait stations during the week.
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) and COC Lerchen report working waterfowl and grouse hunters, whitefish netters and deer shining. Investigation into a decorative tree theft is ongoing. Several complaints were investigated throughout the week. A few hunters did very well on ducks, although duck numbers were sporadic, and grouse hunters averaged about a bird per person.
Enforcement action taken included taking a wild animal from a motor vehicle, duck transportation and stamp violations, failure to transfer watercraft ownership and storage of property on state land.
CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) worked shining complaints and night work west of Duluth. During the middle of the week, he checked inland walleye anglers, who have been doing fairly well. Olson finished with open-water boat items and checked with U.S. Coast Guard crews on upcoming training and work planning.
Bears are still out and about putting on winter weight, as several bear concerns were addressed.
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked hunters and anglers as the seasons continued to change. Some skim ice was found on area lakes as trout anglers tested inland waters, and duck hunters looked for divers passing through. Groups of ATV riders were contacted in the Silver Bay station operating in what they admittedly described as "a careless manner."
A complaint was received of a deer being gutted in an odd place. Enforcement action was taken for waterfowl, angling, boating and ATV violations.