Deer hunters should know that all-terrain vehicles are not allowed on forest trails or trail crossings where posted as closed, according to the latest management plan for tax forfeited land in Crow Wing County.
The county will beef up its enforcement efforts during the coming deer season to make sure the laws are complied with, said Tom Cowell, Crow Wing County land commissioner.
"Last year we had just one infraction, which surprised us," Cowell said. "We thought we'd see ATVs running all over the place. We heard loud and clear that folks wanted more enforcement, so we provided the exposure, talked to people, explained our policies and it worked out well. Folks thanked us for being there."
Of the approximately 100,000 acres of tax forfeited land in the county, between 8,000 and 9,000 acres -- less than 10 percent -- are closed to motorized uses, Cowell said. If a person is stopped for operating an ATV on closed acreage he or she will be issued a warning ticket. The person's name will go into the county data base and if that person violates the law a second time he or she will be fined.
The patrol officers will be supplied by the sheriff's department, which will receive reimbursement from the county for expenses, Cowell said.
Battlefish ready to air Nov. 3
Battlefish, a new fishing television show produced by Brainerd resident Chris Hermann, will debut Nov. 3 at 1 a.m. on KARE-11. The show follows Saturday Night Live and Inside Edition.
The competition reality show, in which contestants "battle" to win fishing tournament, will feature Noel Lee, former deejay at the Power Loon, as narrator and Ted Takasaki, fishing pro and president of Lindy/Little Joe, as pro commentator. Sunday's show was filmed at Lake of the Woods in July and will serve at the pilot for the entire series.
"We easily had enough footage to fill an entire hour," Hermann said. "If people are interested in being contestants they should send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. We also have a Web site we hope to have up by this weekend."
Commercial sponsors for the program are Lindy/Little Joe, Aquavu, Kasswinn and Flambeau.
Range Bassmasters win tournament on Farm Island
For the first time in history four clubs participated in the annual Bass Club Challenge, pitting the top six anglers from local clubs in a contest to determine bragging rights for the year.
This year, a newly formed club, the Brainerd Lakes Bassmasters, joined Pequot Lakes Bass Club, Baxter Bass Snatchers and Range Bassmasters on a blustery Sept. 21 on Farm Island Lake near Garrison. Led by Jim Smith, with 14 pounds, 7 ounces, Steve Quinn with 13 pounds, 8 ounces, and Phil Laube with 12 pounds, 7 ounces, the Range Bassmasters cruised to the championship with a total weight of 72 pounds, 5 ounces. Brainerd Lakes Bassmasters were second with 46 pounds, 2 ounces, Baxter Bass Snatchers were third with 45 pounds, 7 ounces, and Pequot Lakes Bass Club was fourth with 21 pounds, 2 ounces.
The overall winner in the money division was Kevin Tengwall with 14 pounds, 9 ounces. Jim Smith caught the lunker bass at 4 pounds, 11 ounces.
Schad named DNR operations manager
Dave Schad, a former Brainerd-based DNR regional wildlife manager, has been named the wildlife division's operations manager.
Schad, who has more than 20 years of experience with the DNR, has served in a variety of positions since 1981. His most recent efforts include assisting with plans to restore Minnesota's waterfowl hunting heritage and the chronic wasting disease response in Aitkin County, where he supervised the culling and sampling of more than 100 deer for CWD testing.
"Dave has proven his abilities and leadership skills while working at DNR headquarters in St. Paul as well as several field offices," said Tim Bremicker, the DNR wildlife division director. "His ability to work with people and identify and recommend solutions for emerging issues will clearly be an asset as we face future budget and natural resource challenges."
Schad will oversee a budget of more than $25 million and supervise four regional wildlife managers statewide. He also will supervise several natural resource program consultants and support staff in St. Paul.
Schad's predecessor, Tom Isley, retired in August. Schad begins his new duties in November.
Deer, car collision hazard highest now
With the fall harvest in full swing and deer mating season nearing its peak, the potential for deer-vehicle accidents is at its highest.
Defensive driving is especially necessary now. A few minor adjustments in your traveling habits can reduce the risk of a deer-vehicle collision. If possible, reduce your travel during the evening and early morning hours, when the animals are most active. When you drive, slow down and watch for deer, especially near wooded areas or where deer crossing signs are posted. The sooner you see a deer, the more time you will have to react to its movements.
Other tips include slowing down immediately when you see a deer if you can do so without causing a traffic hazard, flashing your lights or sounding your horn and using emergency flashers or tapping your brakes to alert vehicles behind you to the danger ahead.
Report deer-vehicle accidents to local law enforcement officials. Your report will help the DNR track the incidence of deer-vehicle accidents. Any Minnesota resident may claim the animal by contacting a law enforcement officer. An authorization permit will be issued allowing the individual to lawfully possess the deer.
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