Editor's note: Some conservation officers don't submit reports every week.
Conservation Officer David Schottenbauer (Silver Bay) spent the past week checking snowmobile activity. Time was also spent working trout and border-water anglers.
CO Don Murray (Two Harbors) worked area snowmobile activity and checked lakes for the upcoming ice shelter removal deadline. Drivers are urged to pay attention as deer movements increase along roadways, causing collisions as the spring green-up occurs.
CO Mary Manning (Hovland) attended an Honor Guard meeting in addition to station patrol work. Manning worked a Canadian border detail with COs Wahlstrom and Williams and U.S. Forest Service officer Belmore. Lake conditions were very good, although fishing success was mixed. Snowmobile trails are icy and have a few bare spots, but still are very rideable for this time of year.
CO Sean Williams (Ely 1) patrolled several Boundary Waters trout lakes over the weekend. Although angling activity was high, success was only fair with only a few fish being seen. Williams reported violations for angling with no license in possession and using unlabeled smelt as bait.
CO Thomas Wahlstrom (Grand Marais) checked anglers on remote trout lakes along the border during a work detail. Some nice fish were seen on the ice. He checked snowmobilers out enjoying the trails. He took enforcement action for ATV, snowmobile and angling violations.
CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked angling enforcement inside and outside of the BWCA, as well as snowmobile enforcement. In one noteworthy contact, Bermel was observing a group of anglers in the BWCA from a long distance when one member of the group began drinking from a prohibited beer can. He and another member made a big joke of it by posing and taking pictures. When the angler finished he sank the can in the lake. He had also ridden his snowmobile beyond the BWCA line. Bermel took appropriate enforcement action for the violations.
CO Kylan Hill (Tofte) reports venturing into the BWCAW during the past week. With the help of the local U.S. Forest Service officer, multiple groups were checked. Lake trout were biting and one angler was cited for using a power auger. He also handled equipment maintenance and disposed of evidence from this past fall.
CO Keith Olson (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked shore anglers and some hearty boat anglers along the shores of Lake Superior in the Duluth, Knife River and Two Harbors areas. He reports catch rates were spotty at best, but most anglers enjoyed the chance at open-water fishing. Olson checked some of the last snowmobilers of the season on the Duluth-Two Harbors trails. Trail conditions were surprisingly solid despite the higher temperatures of last week. Olson and the St. Louis County Sheriff Office responded to a trespass complaint in Duluth Township.
CO Matt Miller (Lake Superior Marine Unit) checked anglers and boaters who were heading out for some early season open-water fun. Salmon and steelhead were said to be biting. A reminder that a watercraft must be equipped with a wearable personal flotation devices for each person on board. Bibs and ice fishing clothing with “float assistance” are not U.S. Coast Guard-approved PFDs, and while still a good idea, do not take the place of a required PFD. Miller took enforcement action for boating and snowmobile violations.