Hunters register 111,000 deer through third weekend

Minnesota hunters registered 111,000 deer through the third and last weekend of firearms deer season, down 31,000 from the same period in 2013, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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Still time to register for Minnesota’s first pheasant summit

There’s still time to register for the first Minnesota Pheasant Summit and contribute to strategies that aim to enhance habitat for this important species. Full Story

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State forest Christmas tree to grace governor’s residence

This year’s Christmas tree for the governor’s official residence in St. Paul is a 50-foot balsam fir from the Nemadji State Forest, according to the Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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DNR auction in Grand Rapids set for Dec. 6

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources will hold a public auction of surplus equipment Saturday, Dec. 6, at 9:30 a.m. in Grand Rapids at the DNR northeast regional office, 1201 East Highway 2, Grand Rapids. Full Story

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Parks and Trails Legacy Advisory Committee seeks applicants

Applications due by Monday, Dec. 22

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.  Full Story

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Hunters register 102,000 deer through second weekend

Minnesota hunters registered 102,000 deer through the second weekend of firearms deer season, down 31,000 from the same period in 2013, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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Furbearer registration is Dec. 5 in Finland, Grand Marais, Two Harbors

Trappers in the Finland, Grand Marais and Two Harbors areas can register furbearers on Friday, Dec. 5, between noon and 7 p.m. at area DNR registration stations. A typo in the 2014 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Handbook incorrectly lists the date as Dec. 6. Full Story

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Mille Lacs open to pike spearing; walleye regulation unchanged

Dark-house spearing of northern pike will be allowed at Mille Lacs Lake for the first time since the winter of 1982-83, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
Full Story

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Conference kicks off plan for Lake Superior fisheries management

Those interested in how the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources manages fish in Lake Superior are invited to participate in an informational conference on Saturday, Dec. 6, an event that kicks off the revision process for the next 10-year plan for Lake Superior fisheries management. Full Story

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Like outdoors media? DNR subscription deals run through November

Readers of outdoors media have until Sunday, Nov. 30, to take advantage of subscription deals on two publications that are partnering with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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Upper Red Lake walleye regulations more restrictive this winter season

Walleye regulations will be more restrictive on Upper Red Lake following record walleye harvests the past winter and summer, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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DNR reminder: ice is not safe right now

Ice is forming on some lakes, rivers and ponds around Minnesota, but DNR conservation officers warn it is too early to venture out.   Full Story

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DNR closes northeast Minnesota’s early wolf season

Wolf hunting in the northeast zone will close for the remainder of the 2014 early firearms season at the end of shooting hours on Friday, Nov. 14, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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DNR seeks applications for OHV grants

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is seeking applications for grants to support off-highway vehicle (OHV) trail projects and new trail proposals. Full Story

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Minnesota’s snowmobile trails open Dec. 1

Despite the recent snowfall throughout much of Minnesota, snowmobile trails are not yet ready for riding, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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DNR seeks comments on Grand Marais area lake and stream management plans

Citizens interested in learning about or commenting on Minnesota Department of Natural Resources strategies for managing Grand Marais area lakes and streams have until Jan. 3 to ask questions or submit comments. Full Story

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Hunters register 54,000 deer during first weekend

Minnesota hunters registered 54,000 deer during the first three days of firearms deer season, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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10 new conservation officers begin their initial field assignments

Ten new Minnesota Department of Natural Resources conservation officers are in their field stations following 16 weeks of field training. Full Story

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Minnesota state parks offer benefits to military personnel and disabled veterans

Although Minnesota state offices will be closed in observance of Veteran’s Day on Nov. 11, Minnesota state parks and recreations areas will be open, and free vehicle permits are available to many active military personnel and disabled veterans. Full Story

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Deer hunters in far southeastern Minnesota encouraged to submit harvested deer for CWD sampling

Southeastern Minnesota deer hunters who harvest a deer in permit areas 348 and 349 are encouraged to have their deer sampled for chronic wasting disease (CWD) during the opening weekend of the firearms hunting season. Full Story

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Whitefish, cisco sport netting dates announced for Shagawa, Ojibway and Bear Island lakes

Additional opening dates have been set for whitefish and cisco (tullibee) sport netting on area lakes, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Tower area fisheries office. Full Story

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Hunting: the adventure and the responsibility

There will be nearly 500,000 blaze-orange clad hunters afield when Minnesota’s firearms deer season gets underway Saturday, Nov. 8. Whether they bag a buck or not, it’s great just to be outdoors. Full Story

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After walleye stamp contest, Hamrick has won them all

Stephen Hamrick of Lakeville has won the 2015 walleye stamp contest sponsored by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, becoming only the second person to win all five DNR stamp contests. Full Story

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DNR grants give trap shooting ranges a boost

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has approved nearly $400,000 in expedited small range trap shooting grants to expand, improve or upgrade trap shooting ranges across the state. Full Story

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Warm, windy conditions greet hunters during second Camp Ripley hunt

Archers took a two-day total of 70 deer during the second bow hunt at Camp Ripley Military Reservation near Little Falls on Oct. 25-26, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources said. Full Story

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Brown’s Creek State Trail opens, capping construction season at Minnesota state parks and trails

Following the installation of a bridge over Manning Avenue in June and the recent completion of paving, Brown’s Creek State Trail is now open, the Department of Natural Resources announced today. The 6-mile trail connects Stillwater to the Gateway State Trail, which continues to St. Paul. Full Story

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Conservative 2014 deer season will rebuild herd, challenge hunters

By Tom Landwehr, commissioner, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

Like more than 400,000 others, I am anxiously awaiting Saturday, Nov. 8, when Minnesota’s firearms deer hunting season begins. Full Story

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Hunters reminded that bonus permit use limited this season

Hunters in most of the state are not allowed to use bonus permits to take antlerless deer during the 2014 season, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.   Full Story

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Hunters, off-highway vehicle users should review Pine County trail changes

Before venturing into the woods this fall, hunters, trappers and other recreationists are encouraged to review the changes to some trail designations in Pine County. The areas include trails located on state lands in the Nemadji, General Andrews, Chengwatana and St. Croix state forests. Full Story

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Grand Rapids area whitefish, cisco sport netting to open

Opening dates have been set for whitefish and cisco sport netting on Grand Rapids area lakes, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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Mille Lacs Lake fall fish survey shows promise

For the first time since 2008, Mille Lacs Lake walleye surviving into their second year remain abundant and the following year’s hatch appears to be doing well, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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Conservative deer season will lower harvest

Hunters may not see fewer deer when firearms deer season opens Saturday, Nov. 8, but regulations implemented to help increase Minnesota’s deer population will place more of those deer off limits, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources said. Full Story

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Hunters can register deer through phone, Internet or in person

Hunters can register deer they harvest by making a telephone call, using the Internet, or bringing deer to a big-game registration station, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Registration instructions for all methods are available online. Full Story

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Deer hunters encouraged to buy license early

With nearly 500,000 firearms deer hunters in the state, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources encourages hunters to purchase their licenses early to avoid long lines and any potential system issues associated with the high sales volume. The 2014 Minnesota firearms deer season begins Saturday, Nov. 8. Full Story

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Minnesota deer facts

Deer: The Animal

  • Adult female white-tailed deer weigh about 145 lbs., males 170 lbs.
  • The biggest white-tailed deer ever recorded in Minnesota was a 500-pound buck.
  • A whitetail’s home range is about one square mile.

Deer: Hunting

  • Last year, 30 percent of Minnesota firearm hunters successfully harvested a deer. About 53 percent were antlered bucks.
  • 70 percent of Minnesota’s firearms deer harvest typically occurs during the first three or four days of the season.
  • The average hunter spends five days afield during Minnesota’s firearms deer season.
  • Last year’s total deer harvest was about 170,000.
  • Because of a conservative 2014 season designed to boost the statewide population, total deer harvest in 2014 is anticipated to be considerably lower and could reach levels not experienced in decades.
  • Hunters can register their deer via Internet, phone or at walk-in big-game registration stations.
  • The largest typical whitetail buck ever taken in Minnesota had a Boone & Crockett score of 202; shot by John Breen in 1918 near Funkley.
  • Minnesota’s No. 1 non-typical whitetail buck had 43 points; shot by 17-year-old Mitch Vakoch in 1974.

Deer: Licenses

  • In total, about 812,000 deer hunting licenses and permits (all types) were sold in 2013.
  • 95 percent of deer licenses are sold to Minnesota residents.
  • The DNR Information Center remained open two hours later on the day before last year’s deer opener to answer more than 2,000 telephone inquiries, most of them related to the firearms opener.

Deer: Economics

  • Nearly 500,000 deer hunters in Minnesota.
  • Direct retail sales – $234 million.
  • Salaries, wages, business owner income – $127 million.
  • State and local tax revenue – $28 million.
  • Number of directly supported jobs – 3,760.
  • Economic impact is greatest in Greater Minnesota.

Top 10 big game hunting violations
1) Hunt over bait
2) Transport uncased/loaded firearm
3) Fail to validate
4) Fail to register
5) License not in possession
6) Untagged
7) No valid license
8) Lending, borrowing, transferring or altering a license
9) Unmarked/unregistered bear bait station
10) Shooting from the road at big game

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Mild conditions greet hunters during first Camp Ripley hunt

Archers took a two-day total of 75 deer during the first two-day bow hunt at Camp Ripley Military Reservation near Little Falls on Oct. 15-16, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources said. Full Story

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A face like a pig and a penchant for drama: on the trail of a rare snake

By Harland Hiemstra, DNR information officer

Slowly waving what looks like a small rooftop TV antenna from side to side, Erica Hoaglund steps carefully through the little bluestem, blazing star and black-eyed Susans growing in the Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge. In her other hand she holds a small receiver that periodically emits a chirping sound, louder or softer depending on where she points the antenna. Full Story

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Youth archers harvest 6 deer at Ripley and Lake Alexander Preserve

Cool, sunny conditions greeted youth participating in the 13th annual youth archery deer hunt at the Camp Ripley Military Reservation north of Little Falls and the 11th annual youth archery hunt at nearby Lake Alexander Preserve over the weekend. Full Story

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Public hunting land dedicated during Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener helps protect Worthington’s municipal water

More than 150 outdoor supporters and hunters gathered Saturday during the Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener to dedicate a recently acquired wildlife management area (WMA) near Worthington. Full Story

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Mankato named host community of 2015 Minnesota Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener

Gov. Mark Dayton announced tonight that the city of Mankato has been chosen as the host community for the 2015 Minnesota Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener. Full Story

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Learn wilderness survival basics before going afield

A missing duck hunter near Mille Lacs Lake forced to spend the night in the woods is a good reminder that anyone spending time outdoors should know wilderness survival basics, said an official with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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State Line Lake rehabilitation project enters final phases with rough fish eradication Oct. 9-10

A multiyear cooperative effort to improve water quality, fish and wildlife habitat on State Line Lake near Emmons, is entering its final phases. Full Story

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Whitefish and tullibee sport netting opens Oct. 10

Recreational netting for whitefish and tullibee opens Friday, Oct. 10, on designated lakes in northern Minnesota, according to the Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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DNR enforcement names new chief pilot

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Enforcement Division has named Conservation Officer/Pilot Tom Buker its chief pilot. He had been the acting chief pilot since October 2013. Buker will assume the permanent position and be promoted to captain Oct. 8. Full Story

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Hamrick wins again in 2015 pheasant stamp competition

A painting by Stephen Hamrick of Lakeville was chosen as the winning design from among 16 entries in the 2015 pheasant habitat stamp contest sponsored by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Full Story

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