Catch some fun on Take-A-Kid fishing weekend June 10-12

June 6, 2011

by Chris Schultz

From the DNR

Minnesotans who have yet to net their fishing license catch a break June 10-12 when they can fish without a license while accompanying a child age 15 or younger.

Minnesota’s annual Take-A-Kid Fishing weekend aims to help keep the state’s fishing tradition strong by encouraging adults and kids to share an angling experience on or along the state’s thousands of lakes, rivers and streams.

“Many kids would love to go fishing – they just need to be asked,” said Mike Kurre, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) mentoring coordinator. “For adults, this is the one time of year when they can do just that without having to have a fishing license. If you’ve never hooked this opportunity before, go for it.”

Kurre said it’s hard to underestimate the importance of today’s adults on tomorrow’s angling community.

“Most people who fish do so because they received an invitation long ago,” said Kurre. “That’s the natural path. It’s the way friends and families continue the fishing tradition.”

Kurre said the DNR’s website includes much helpful fishing information, including the location of fishing piers.

Local bait shops can also offer good advice on where to take a child fishing.

Kurre said adults unable to participate in this year’s official Take-A-Kid Fishing weekend should still consider inviting a youth to go fishing.

The cost of an annual resident fishing license is just $17, he said, and valid through April 30, 2012.

“Why not make every weekend take a kid fishing weekend?” said Kurre.

GND Fishing Contest in Howard Lake June 25

The 29th annual Howard Lake Good Neighbor Days fishing contest will be Saturday, June 25 on Howard Lake.

Registration is from 7 to 8 a.m., with shotgun start for the fishing at 8 a.m. The contest ends at noon.

Entries will be limited to the first 200 received.

The cost is $30 if received by Saturday, June 18, or $35 if received after Monday, June 19.

Entry forms are available at local buisnesses, or at the web site, www.howardlakegoodneighbordays.webs.com.

For more information, contact Denny Decker at (320) 543-2992.

Wavery Gun Club upcoming events

The Waverly Gun Club will be hosting a number of classes and events in the upcoming weeks and months.

A complete list of the upcoming action at the Waverly Cub Club is listed below.

For more information, contact Al Moy (612) 889-4423; Ken Reinert (612) 308-9259; or Russ Johnson (763) 218-7376.

The Waverly Gub Club is at 4465 DeSota Ave. SW, Waverly.

• Youth trap league

The youth trap league is open to the public, and has begun.

It runs every Monday starting at 6:30 p.m. until Monday, July 9.

Shotguns, ammo, and targets are provided.

• Summer trap league

The summer trap league has started, and individuals and teams are still welcome.

For additional information, visit the web site www.waverlygunclub.org.

• Ladies only night

The ladies only night is open to the public, and no membership is required.

It takes place the second Tuesday of every month through October, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Ammo, targets, .22 cal pistols, and rifles are provided at no charge.

You may bring your own ceter fire handgun and ammunition, if you prefer.

A NRA certified range safety officer will be present on the shooting line, and instruction is available upon request.

Rain or shine, shoot from the comfort of a shelter.

Handguns at seven to 25 yards, and rifles at 50 yards.

Second annual Ugly Fish Contest on Howard Lake

The second annual Ugly Fish (carp) Contest is Friday, June 10 starting at 10 p.m., until Saturday, June 11 at 10 a.m.

The contest is on Howard Lake, starting at Lion’s Park.

This is a free event, with prizes paid per pound of carp caught – two-person teams.

All teams must pre-register by calling Berwyn (612) 867-1985 or Rod (763) 291-0546.

The maximum number of teams is 15, and teams cannot have more than two bow-and-arrow shooters per boat.

All contestants must fish Howard Lake and abide by fishing laws concerning rough fish as printed on pages 59 and 60 of the Minnesota Fishing Regulations 2011.

All carp (if contestant does not want them) will be disposed of at the Lion’s Park landing by the touranment sponsor.

The contest is sponsored by the Howard Lake Watershed Alliance and the Howard Lake Sportsmen’s Club.

Fishing Klinic for Kids at Buffalo Lake

Mark your calendars for the 14th annual Fishing Klinic For Kids Saturday, June 18 from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Sturges Park on Buffalo Lake.

All area kids and their parents are welcome.

This is the largest event of its kind in Minnesota.

There will be three fishing pros on hand to share their expertise.

Come and participate to enjoy the fishing, demonstrations, vendor booths, food, games, activities, fun, and prizes.

There is something for everyone at this family-friendly event.

For more information on the organization, go to www.fishingklinicforkids.com

Conservation officers’ weekly report
From the DNR

• CO Brian Mies (Annandale) checked anglers in Stearns and Wright counties.

CO Mies conducted a boat and water work crew.

CO Mies checked ATV compliance.

• CO Rick Reller (Buffalo) checked ATV, boating and fishing activity in the Wright County area.

Several nuisance beaver complaints were handled.

Enforcement action was taken for invasive species violations and angling violations.

• CO Steve Walter (Waconia) gave a career presentation to students at Norwood Young America High School.

Invasive species checks were done at public waters access sites in Carver County.

A boat and water safety detail was worked on Red Lake with CO Thephong Le finding multiple violations.

• CO Jackie Glaser (Mound) worked Lake Minnetonka over the holiday weekend finding numerous fishing and boating violations and a warrant arrest.

She responded to several TIP calls and received nuisance animal complaints.

She also patrolled the Luce Line State Trail.

• CO Angela Graham (Hutchinson) checked anglers and ATV’s in the Minnesota River Valley, monitored the Luce Line and Dakota Trails, and worked boating enforcement on local lakes.

Officer Graham also patrolled her state and county parks over the holiday weekend.

• CO Brett Oberg (Hutchinson) worked a good walleye bite in Hutchinson, with limits and near limits being caught.

ATV enforcement was worked in the area with enforcement action taken for operating on a county highway, and operating in the ditch during the AG closure.

Officer Oberg also reports some large crappies coming from an area lake.

Enforcement action was taken for over limit of crappies.

• CO Wayne Hatlestad (Litchfield) checked angling and boating activity.

Additional time was spent checking and advising boaters of invasive species.

Hatlestad also checked turkey hunting and ATV activity.

Hatlestad also checked archery fishermen and received additional complaints of fish being left on shore.

Bear hunt lottery to be re-run
From the DNR

Hunters who applied for a 2011 Minnesota bear hunting permit will have to wait a little longer to determine if they were successful in this year’s lottery.

That’s because the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is rerunning the bear lottery due to a computer-related error.

Though no bear hunting licenses have been issued, the DNR reports some hunters may be under the mistaken impression they have been selected as a winner because they viewed incorrect content on the agency’s website before the error was detected.

“The message to bear hunters is that we’ll get the word out when correct lottery results are available,” said Dennis Simon, DNR wildlife section chief. “We regret any inconvenience this misinformation has caused.”

Simon said older data from 2009 rather than the most current data from 2010 was used by the computer to determine hunter preference level.

As a result, many bear hunting permit winners were erroneously selected based on incorrect preference information.

“Our job is to conduct a fair and accurate lottery and that’s what we will do,” said Simon.

New lottery results will be posted on the DNR website in early June and successful hunters will also be notified by mail later in June.

DNR and The North Face encourage MN families to discover the outdoors
From the DNR

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Division of Parks and Trails is partnering with The North Face on the Explore Your Parks program in keeping with the DNR’s mission to connect people to the outdoors.

Looking for places to hike, bike, camp, climb, and paddle this summer?

While supplies last, people can pick up a free Explore Your Parks activity guide at The North Face stores (3008 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis, or 799 Grand Ave., St. Paul) and discover several Minnesota state parks where family activities are offered.

People who make a purchase at The North Face will receive a one-day pass (a $5 value) to any of Minnesota’s 74 state parks and recreation areas.

“Engaging the next generation in outdoor activities is a big job, and we all have to help with the mission,” said Courtland Nelson, director of the DNR’s Division of Parks and Trails. “We’re grateful to The North Face for partnering with us to educate the public about the value of nature and the importance of being healthy and active in the outdoors.”

State parks in seven other states are also partnering with The North Face on the Explore Your Parks program, a national effort supporting Let’s Move Outside, the outdoor recreation component of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move campaign to end childhood obesity.

The other states are California, Colorado, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon and Virginia.

“Drawing attention to close-to-home outdoor opportunities for everyone – from children to seniors – to get outside, get healthy and have fun is at the core of the Let’s Move Outside,” said Robin Schepper, executive director of Let’s Move. “Bringing families into the state parks is not only enjoyable, but also helps build lasting lessons in fitness and the natural environment.”

Special Let’s Move! events will take place in each participating state this summer.

The Minnesota event – to include activities, speakers and giveaways for the whole family – will take place Saturday, Oct. 1, at Fort Snelling State Park.

“At The North Face, we’re committed to encouraging more people to get outdoors, and we want to bring attention to the dozens of unique places to explore nature close to home within our treasured state parks system,” said Todd Spaletto, president of The North Face.

For more information, visit www.dnr.gov or call the DNR Information Center at (651) 296-6157 or toll-free 888-646-6367 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Kids and adults get expert instruction at MN state parks
From the DNR

As part of its ongoing effort to get more people outdoors, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is offering a series of skill-building workshops that will introduce camping, fishing, paddling, climbing and archery to the next generation this summer.

The DNR Division of Parks and Trails created these programs in response to recent research that points to declining participation in outdoor recreation by young families.

After hearing parents say in focus groups that they lacked outdoor skills, the DNR created a series of workshops with a focus on outdoor adventure made easy for beginners.

The workshops were made possible with funds from the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment.

I Can Camp!

Participants will camp overnight, get hands-on experience, and learn basic outdoor skills from an expert I Can Camp! crew.

All camping equipment is provided (including tents, air mattresses and cook stoves).

Participants just bring their own food and bedding (sleeping bags or blankets and pillows).

One-night workshops ($35 for up to six people) are scheduled every Saturday, June 4 to Sept. 3.

Two-night workshops ($50) will take place June 24-25, July 15-16, July 29-30 and Aug. 12-13.

For locations or to make reservations, visit www.stayatmnparks.com or call 866-85PARKS.

I Can Climb!

Certified professionals from Vertical Endeavors Guided Adventures will teach kids, first-time climbers and other beginners the basic skills needed to get up some of Minnesota’s most stunning cliff faces.

These workshops will take place between June 11 and Aug. 27 at Interstate, Blue Mounds and Tettegouche state parks.

All equipment and instruction will be provided free, but a vehicle permit ($5 daily or $25 year-round) is required to enter all Minnesota state parks. No reservations are required.

Children must be at least four years old (nine years old to do the more difficult climbing at Tettegouche State Park), and anyone under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

I Can Paddle!

I Can Paddle! workshops will help beginners develop all of the skills necessary for a lifetime of paddling on Minnesota’s lakes and rivers, from how to launch a canoe safely to the most effective paddling strokes.

• Canoeing 101 programs will take place on lakes at various Minnesota state parks.

These two-hour programs, scheduled 10 times between June 12 and Aug. 27, are free except for the vehicle permit required to enter the park ($5 daily, $25 year-round).

• River canoeing programs will take place on the St. Croix River State Water Trail (Saturday, June 25), the Otter Tail River State Water Trail (Saturday, July 16), the Rum River State Water Trail (Saturday, July 30), and the Minnesota River State Water Trail (Saturday, Aug. 13).

The river canoeing programs cost $15 per canoe, with up to three people per canoe.

Advance registration is required for all workshops. Canoes, lifejackets and paddles are provided.

Archery in the Parks

Learn how to shoot a bow and arrow in a safe, supervised setting at one of the many programs taking place at Minnesota state parks May 27 through Oct. 1.

Trained archery instructors will provide an introduction to the sport of archery, along with assistance in shooting a bow.

No experience or equipment is needed.

There is no charge for any of these programs, but a vehicle permit ($5 daily or $25 year-round) is required to enter all Minnesota state parks.

I Can Fish!

Learn the basics of how to cast, tie a knot, and catch fish from MinnAqua Nature Corps staff and veteran anglers.

Equipment and bait are provided. No fishing license is necessary.

Most of the time is spent actually fishing.

More than 100 workshops are scheduled throughout the summer. Days and times vary.

There is no charge for any of these programs, but a vehicle permit ($5 daily or $25 year-round) is required to enter all Minnesota state parks.

For more information on any of these programs go to www.mndnr.gov/parksandtrails and search for I Can! or call the DNR Information Center at (651) 296-6157 or toll-free 888-646-6367 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

DNR asks citizens to give turtles a brake
From the DNR

Each year at this time, many female turtles move from lakes, ponds, wetlands, rivers and streams to nesting areas, where they deposit their eggs in self-excavated nests.

Unfortunately, many nesting areas are separated from the turtles’ wintering areas by roads.

As a result, turtles are often observed crossing roads as they make their way to nesting areas.

“Many turtles and other species are killed on Minnesota roads each year, especially during the nesting season,” said Carol Hall, herpetologist with Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR).

There are several ways people can help reduce road mortality for turtles.

They include allowing unassisted road crossings.

When turtles can safely cross roads unaided due to a lack of oncoming traffic, allow them to do so.

Observe from a distance and avoid rapid movements, because doing otherwise will often cause turtles to change direction, stop or seek shelter within their shells.

Also people should avoid excessive handling.

While wanting to inspect turtles closely is understandable, excessive handling can disrupt normal behavior, according to Hall.

Prolonged examination of turtles should therefore be limited to only one or two individuals of each species.

People can also help turtles maintain direction of travel.

Always move turtles in the same direction they were traveling in when encountered.

Turtles should always be moved across roadways in as direct a line as possible.

If people see a turtle or other animal on the road, they should slow down and drive around it.

Hall noted that many people want to help turtles cross the road, which is understandable, but the best approach is to let the turtle cross unassisted.

Minnesota has nine turtle species, some of which are protected.

For more information on Minnesota turtles at www.dnr.state.mn.us/reptiles_amphibians/turtles/index.html.