November 21, 2017 - Hunters register 161,057 deer through third weekend of season
Harvest climbs 16 percent from 2016
Minnesota firearms hunters registered 161,057 deer through the third weekend of deer season, according to the Department of Natural Resources.
Preliminary results through the third weekend show that the number of deer registered was up 16 percent from 2016. Of the deer harvested, 53 percent were bucks, compared to 63 percent during the same period in 2016.
In Zone 1, in northeastern Minnesota, total firearms harvest was up 36 percent. In Zone 2, which covers the majority of the state and runs from Canada to Iowa, harvest was up 10 percent and Zone 3, in southeastern Minnesota, was down 5 percent.
“The conditions were generally good for hunters participating in the last week of the Zone 1 season and for the start of the 3B season in the southeast,” said Erik Thorson, acting big game program leader, “which provided a boost to the statewide firearms harvest.”
Based upon the number of antlerless permits available and the number of permit areas that allow multiple deer to be taken, the DNR is projecting the 2017 total deer harvest to be around 200,000. The 2016 total harvest was 173,213 and to date firearms and archery hunters have harvested about 180,000 deer this year.
In much of Minnesota, the firearms deer season ended Nov. 12, and the northern rifle zone season ended Nov. 19. The late southeast firearms deer season is open through Sunday, Nov. 26. The muzzleloader season begins Saturday, Nov. 25, and continues through Sunday, Dec. 10. More information on deer management can be found at mndnr.gov/deer.
November 21, 2017 - Parks and Trails Legacy Advisory Committee seeks applicants
Applications due by Saturday, Dec. 16
The Department of Natural Resources, the Metropolitan Council and the Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission are seeking qualified applicants to serve on the Parks and Trails Legacy Advisory Committee.
“The Parks and Trails Legacy Advisory Committee plays a critical role in helping us achieve the vision Minnesotans have for use of the Parks and Trails Legacy Funds and creates an accessible and equitable, integrated system of state and regional parks and trails in Minnesota,” said DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr.
The purpose of the committee is to promote and coordinate implementation of the 25-Year Parks and Trails Legacy Plan. Funding recommendations for individual projects is not a part of this committee’s work. The plan can be found at on the parks and trails legacy plan page.
2018 will mark the 10th anniversary of the passage of the Legacy Amendment by Minnesota voters. The committee is planning a series of regional events during the year to celebrate Legacy accomplishments and engage Minnesotans on the question, “Why Parks and Trails Legacy Matters.” Information about the events will be available in January on Facebook (/PTLegacyMN) and on the committee website (www.legacy.leg.mn/ptlac).
The deadline for applications is Saturday, Dec. 16.
The committee is made up of 17 members, including, to the practical extent possible, diverse geographical and demographic representation. The committee has a mixture of park and trail professionals and Minnesota residents. Committee members should have expertise in two or more of the four strategic pillars of the plan:
- Connect people and the outdoors.
- Acquire land and create opportunities.
- Take care of what we have.
- Coordinate among partners.
Terms are two years with the option of being reappointed for a maximum of three terms. Meetings are scheduled every two months around the state, with an option to attend remotely.
Interested individuals may complete the application form online at www.legacy.leg.mn/ptlac/member-application or print it out and return it to Paul Purman, Department of Natural Resources, Box 39, 500 Lafayette Road, St. Paul, MN 55155. Anyone with questions can contact Paul via phone at 651-259-5643 or email at email@example.com.
November 21, 2017 - DNR seeks comments on Grand Marais area lake and stream management plans
Anglers and others interested in Department of Natural Resources strategies for managing Grand Marias area lakes and streams are invited to review and comment on management plans scheduled for review this fall. This annual process includes several waters located within the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW). Comments on lakes within the BWCAW will be accepted until Dec. 20. The comment period for lakes and streams outside the BWCAW, will extend through Feb. 15.
A management plan identifies specific management activities planned for a lake or stream over the next five to 20 years, including any proposed stocking or special regulations.
“Management plans are our best single sources of information on past, present and desired future conditions in our lakes and streams,” said Steve Persons, Grand Marais area fisheries supervisor. “Comments and suggestions from those most interested in these waters are crucial when it comes to making plans and determining management success. For anglers this is the best opportunity to influence how these lakes and streams are managed.”
In the Grand Marais area, plans for the following lakes and streams will reviewed this winter.
Lake plans under review:
The status and preservation of native lake trout populations will be the primary concern in plans being revised for Blue Snow and Gabimichigami Lakes. Both are located inside the BWCAW.
Stream trout stocking and management strategies will be reviewed in Thompson, Thrush, Turnip, Olson, Kraut, Little Portage, Olga, Mavis (BWCAW), Missing Link (BWCAW), Meditation (BWCAW), Talus, Trout, Pine (near Two Island Lake), Unnamed (near Tom Lake), Chester, Extortion, and North Shady Lakes. Options to consider include changes in species, reductions in stocking frequency, and changes in the number or size of fish stocked. In Mine, Peanut, Weasel (Sled), Tomato, Trip, and Rog (BWCAW) Lakes, fisheries managers are considering eliminating trout stocking, due to the high cost of stocking remote lakes by air, poor survival of stocked fish, or use that appears to have been too low to justify the cost of continued stocking. Angler feedback on fisheries in these lakes is critically needed for these important decisions.
Plans for Devilfish, Gust, Hand, and Tom Lakes will be reviewed with attention to the status and needs of walleye fisheries in those lakes. Moore Lake will be reviewed to determine whether it offers any potential for panfish management.
Plans for several lightly-used BWCAW lakes in the area, including Caribou (by Clearwater), Clove, Kiskadinna, Long, Mora, Morgan, Skipper, and Tepee Lakes will be reviewed. Those plans will be revised primarily to incorporate any new survey data that may have been obtained, and to establish survey schedules for the next few years.
Streams plans under review:
Plans for Beaverdam Creek and the Swamp River will be reviewed. Both are marginal trout streams, and may be considered for removal from the State’s list of designated trout streams.
Plans for the Cascade River, Elbow Creek, and the Onion River will also be reviewed. All three support thriving brook trout populations, with the Cascade and Onion Rivers also supporting steelhead and salmon in their lower reaches. Plans will focus on habitat and water quality, hydrology and watershed issues. The DNR is considering removing the portion of Elbow Creek above Elbow Lake from the State’s list of designated trout streams, since no trout have been found in that part of the stream in recent surveys.
Current plans for lakes and streams in the area as well as recent fish population assessment information are available for review at the DNR’s Grand Marais area fisheries office, at 1356 E. Highway 61, Grand Marais, Monday through Friday, between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. For more information, call or email Steve Persons at 218-387-6022 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Public comments on management of BWCAW waters are due by Dec. 20. The comment period for lakes and streams outside the BWCAW will extend through Feb. 15. Comments, suggestions and other feedback on the management of these, and all other streams and lakes in the area are welcomed at any time and will be considered when those plans are next due for review.
November 21, 2017 - Willow River dam to be discussed at Dec. 6 public open house
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the city of Willow River will host a public open house on Wednesday, December 6, 2017 to discuss options for the Willow River dam which was severely damaged during a July 2016 rain storm.
The open house will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Willow River School located at 8142 Pine Street, Willow River, Minn.
Participants can visit displays during the first hour of the open house to learn more about three options currently being considered. At 7:30 p.m. DNR staff will make a presentation about the features, benefits and cost of each option and answer questions about next steps.
The meeting purpose is to receive public input about the options and to answer questions about the state’s process.
The dam was built in 1940 as a cooperative venture between the Works Progress Administration and the then Department of Conservation. Heavy rains from a July 2016 thunderstorm overwhelmed the capacity of the dam and caused a significant breach of the north embankment. Options include replacement of the dam to meet current safety standards, removal of the dam, or restoration of the river channel with a series of rock weirs, or rock rapids, to retain water levels but to allow passage of small craft as well as the movement of fish.
“We have a rare opportunity to reimagine how this stretch of river might function and look like in the future,” said project manager Jason Boyle. “We look forward to hearing from area residents and moving the project forward.”
Local News NOV 21st
Hunters register 161,057 deer through third weekend of season
Harvest climbs 16 percent from 2016 Minnesota firearms hunters registered 161,057 deer through the third weekend of deer season, according to the Department of Natural Resources. Preliminary results through the third weekend show that the number of...Read More