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Jaspernuts

Public right of way?

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Jaspernuts

If a drainage ditch for a field meets up with a road is that considered public right of way and can it be hunted? I have heard conflicting views on this.

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harvey lee

I dont believe that one can hunt the whole drainage ditch if it runs across a field. I would ask permission and be on the safe side for sure.

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carpshooterdeluxe

we've been told by co's two differing opinions on drainage ditches; high watermark and down is public right of way, and from the inside edge top of the bank down is public right of way. either way, if your not wading in the water, a farmer owning the adjacent land to the ditch will probably ream your @ss if your on "his" ditch where i grew up.

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Jarrod32

Right of way is defined in terms of total feet. Generally a right-of-way is 66 feet, which would translate to 33 feet each side of center of roadway (which assumes the road is in the center of the right-of-way, which is not necessarily a given).

Some RoW may be larger, some may be smaller, but 66' is a generally accepted measure.

So...that 33' out from center of the road could end up as the bottom of a ditch, could be the far side of a ditch, could be on the inside slope of a ditch if the road and ditch are particularly wide.

You can figure if there is a fence, that that is on private property, and possibly marks the private property edge; if there is a row of power line poles, that they are likely in the RoW...but are also likely the edge.

But you can't define it by whereabouts in the ditch you happen to be...that will vary greatly. Whether you are in the bottom of the ditch, or the high side of the ditch, or anything about a 'high water mark' doesn't matter a bit.

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trailratedtj

jarrod, what field of work are you in....sounds like a surveyor?

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metrojoe

Great explanation Jarrod(spent a few years on a survey crew myself), but if I understand the question correctly, he's referring to ditches that "T" into the road passing under it through a culvert and continue on winding through farm fields. We were wondering the same thing a few years ago while pheasant hunting SW Minnesota. I never did check into it. Some of these ditches are quite large and obviously man made. I wonder who built the ditches and how they were paid for? Couldn't you drop a canoe in where the ditch crosses the road? Or walk it when it's froze over in the winter?

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Jarrod32

Yeah, I went back and reread the original post, and I think I misunderstood the question. In that example, I think the water needs to be navigable in order to be considered public...and the land on each side is considered private property...it would be tough to make that work...

The ditch itself - without water - would not be public, but navigable water connecting a right of way with a larger body of water could very well be.

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BobT

I don't know how the law reads but if I dig a ditch across my property and it contains navigable water, how does that make it public?

I always thought only natural waterways were considered public waters.

Bob

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metrojoe

Maybe that’s the answer Bob. It not only has to be navigable, but it also has to be a natural waterway.

I think there is still a gray area there because what is considered natural? It seems that many small creeks or run off areas could be altered by the land owner for flood control turning it into navigable waters.

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yakfisher

I don't know the answer, but most of those ditches are labeled as county ditches on maps. I'm not sure who paid for them or maintains them, but I would doubt that some if not most of it was paid for by the county. Also a lot of those straight ditches used to be winding creeks, so if someone pays to have a navigable waterway moved is it still a navigable waterway? Hopefully someone out there will know the answer.

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dogs

There is a lot more to it than just connecting up to right-of-way. Navigable waters were decided in the original surveys based on their size, public benefit and being capable of commerce or once a non-navigable water has been adapted for public use. But the fact that public money ect. has gone into a ditch project does not mean that it has be come public property. Lot of time right-of-way is dedicated or purchased for specific purposes and the land owner retains many rights to the land. Even the most clear cut situations can be argued from both sides with 2 or more lawyers.

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sparcebag

I was looking to purchase some land in Todd county,The county surveyer I was talking to recommened I watch out for ditches on the land,Because the owner of the ditch pays in their taxes the upkeep of the ditch.

I believe Harveys advice is correct when in doubt get permission!!

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Mr. B

There is no way to know for sure if a ditch is public or private, without doing a fair amount of research. For that matter the same can be said for road R/W. A ditch or road could be in an easement or it could be dedicated to the public. If either the ditch or road is in and easement then the easement is for the express purpose (stated in the recorded document for the easement) ditch or road, and nothing else.

An example is if the city has a sanitary sewer easement over a piece of property, the city can not just build a bike path over the same easement, they would have to get another easement.

Navigable waterways are a completely different animal. Historically if a waterway was used for commerce (shipping, floating logs and in some cases even trapping for examples)then the waterway was navigable. Today even recreation is being added in some cases to being considered navigable. If the waterway is navigable the bed belongs to the state and the property line would be the Ordinary High Watermark, if it is not navigable the property line would be the Ad Medium Filum (middle thread or middle of the river/ditch) and there are cases that the line is actually the Thalweg or the deepest part of the channel. And if you add in Reliction (Alluvium), Acretion, Avulsion and Revulsion then you might have boundary lines that are not where you think they really are.

Basically Riparian rights (rights of a land owner that is abutting a moving body of water is a field that requires lawyers and surveyors. If the body of water has been meandered that would change things. And there is noway to know if a body of water has been meandered without more research.

To me if I just had to hunt a ditch or road R/W I would be asking the person who owned the abutting land permission and if he said no, I would take it at face value. To me it would not make much sense to go out of my way to prove to someone that something he thought he owned was really public. Even though he might not have the right to tell me I could not hunt, it would just be a confrontation the next time one tried to hunt the piece of property (even with proof that the piece was public) and while hunting I am all about avoiding confrontations.

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Eric Wettschreck

Living in SW MN I can very honestly say, ask permission. Please don't be that guy that just goes into a county ditch and start shooting. That is one of the better ways to make a landowner not allow hunting on their property ever again.

I'm not saying anyone here does this, but there are people out there who do and it ruins it for the rest of the hunting community. Good example of the 2%-ers ruining it for the rest of us.

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metrojoe

Obviously if your unsure then get permission, but lets be honest, I've been told by a number of landowners that I'm on they're property or "so and so's" property and I know for a fact I'm not. I think the point is obtain as much info as you can. Stop by the city or county offices in the area your planning on hunting and obtain plat maps. Look at ariels and drive the area before hand if possible.

Mr B sounds like he knows what he's talking about and although his explanation is clear, it seems it would be difficult to determine what type of situation your dealing with and a guy would just be better off finding some place else to hunt.

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Pistol Pete

I have some of those "ditches" on my property. I own and pay taxes on those "ditches". They are maintained by me the land owner. They were put in by me or the previoues land owner and not paid for by anybody elses money.That does give me the right to say keep off and out. ASK FIRST, that way you won't have be in trouble with anybody. When you ask you may also get a pointer on where else to hunt laugh.gif, then again maybe you won't. But you will get told something else if you don't get permission. frown.gif

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CEDES

Well, I have to say I am torn ! There is nothing better than to get the dogs out, hunt a field / ditch and NOT have to look over your back or feel you are doing something wrong. I have grown up road hunting for roosters, It is how I started to chase the these wiley birds and it is ALOT of fun. I took my 5 year old son out yesterday. I am going to teach him the proper way to chase these birds (any game for that matter). I have a place not far from our house, I have some property to walk, we ask alot of permission and we get birds, over the years this area has gotten more and more populated, but nonetheless, there are a million birds around. We start our day and see one coast into some heavy swamp grass, with fear of wet feet at 9 am we roll on. Dad (me) spots a rooster in a ditch, this ditch is over 500' feet from the farmsted, along side the dirt road, no crops, no posting, I pull up and park, the youngster is all jacked up when I hear farm equipment on the closet farm, I remember this thread from last week and in hopes of doing the right thing, given my kid an education (in hunter / farmer relations) and to avoid any confrontation from anyone. I second guess myself, load the gun and kid back up and pull into the farm to ask permission, more or less letting them know our intention. Well, my son and I were greeted with a smile and a smirk of NOPE, we don't let hunters on our land. I smile, and ask why, this guy proceeds to go on this rant of how he doesn't owe me an explaination. Well, he is right and it isn't what I was looking for anyway, I say thank you for your time and we pull out of his yard, we drove back the way the ditch was to find 3 roosters in there. My son and I look at them and move on, now I have to explain to my son what just happened. It is simple, he didn't want us out there, we need to go find other birds and other land.

Sorry for getting long winded, but what's up ? Don't get me wrong, I don't own that land, on land I own (and I hunt) people ask permission and I go with or I give them a "go get'em boys" I feel I didn't need permission in this instance, but I am not going to cross the line and take a chance, I read the star and trib yesterday, where they were talking about all the rules and the reg book and how that keeps hunters from the sport or to give up on the sport, too many do's and don't's and how you have to be a freakin' lawyer to figure it out, I think that is a problem. I couldn't sleep last night at the thought of those birds flushing over my 13 year old lab and my 5 year old son and I am frustrated. We did end up getting our 2 birds a 1/4 mile down the road in a WMA, wet feet and smiles, ya gotta love it grin.gif!!! It isn't about shooting the birds (to me anyway) I wish I knew of a way to brighten that farmers day, I think on thanksgiving he is going to get a fruit basket, on the basket is going to be a note "not ALL hunters are so bad, givem a chance" It is no wonder farmer / hunter relationships are on the outs ! I would never follow a ditch (into a feild) from a road right of way. SOMEONE OWNS IT !! end of story. I would love to put post a picture of our birds we shot (I don't know how), to show you the look on my sons face, in hopes that farmer happens across this. Maybe it will help the next guy !!!

GOOD HUNTIN' / shoot straight / be safe / get permission !!

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yakfisher

We would love to see your pictures, and it just so happens that at the top of the photo sharing page is a post that explains how you can post pictures on this site. Sounds like we will soon have another ethical hunter in the ranks soon. Congrats and good hunting.

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LuciandTim

Quote:

Well, I have to say I am torn ! There is nothing better than to get the dogs out, hunt a field / ditch and NOT have to look over your back or feel you are doing something wrong. I have grown up road hunting for roosters, It is how I started to chase the these wiley birds and it is ALOT of fun. I took my 5 year old son out yesterday. I am going to teach him the proper way to chase these birds (any game for that matter). I have a place not far from our house, I have some property to walk, we ask alot of permission and we get birds, over the years this area has gotten more and more populated, but nonetheless, there are a million birds around. We start our day and see one coast into some heavy swamp grass, with fear of wet feet at 9 am we roll on. Dad (me) spots a rooster in a ditch, this ditch is over 500' feet from the farmsted, along side the dirt road, no crops, no posting, I pull up and park, the youngster is all jacked up when I hear farm equipment on the closet farm, I remember this thread from last week and in hopes of doing the right thing, given my kid an education (in hunter / farmer relations) and to avoid any confrontation from anyone. I second guess myself, load the gun and kid back up and pull into the farm to ask permission, more or less letting them know our intention. Well, my son and I were greeted with a smile and a smirk of NOPE, we don't let hunters on our land. I smile, and ask why, this guy proceeds to go on this rant of how he doesn't owe me an explaination. Well, he is right and it isn't what I was looking for anyway, I say thank you for your time and we pull out of his yard, we drove back the way the ditch was to find 3 roosters in there. My son and I look at them and move on, now I have to explain to my son what just happened. It is simple, he didn't want us out there, we need to go find other birds and other land.

Sorry for getting long winded, but what's up ? Don't get me wrong, I don't own that land, on land I own (and I hunt) people ask permission and I go with or I give them a "go get'em boys" I feel I didn't need permission in this instance, but I am not going to cross the line and take a chance, I read the star and trib yesterday, where they were talking about all the rules and the reg book and how that keeps hunters from the sport or to give up on the sport, too many do's and don't's and how you have to be a freakin' lawyer to figure it out, I think that is a problem. I couldn't sleep last night at the thought of those birds flushing over my 13 year old lab and my 5 year old son and I am frustrated. We did end up getting our 2 birds a 1/4 mile down the road in a WMA, wet feet and smiles, ya gotta love it
grin.gif
!!! It isn't about shooting the birds (to me anyway) I wish I knew of a way to brighten that farmers day, I think on thanksgiving he is going to get a fruit basket, on the basket is going to be a note "not ALL hunters are so bad, givem a chance" It is no wonder farmer / hunter relationships are on the outs ! I would never follow a ditch (into a feild) from a road right of way. SOMEONE OWNS IT !! end of story. I would love to put post a picture of our birds we shot (I don't know how), to show you the look on my sons face, in hopes that farmer happens across this. Maybe it will help the next guy !!!

GOOD HUNTIN' / shoot straight / be safe / get permission !!


You should of told the guy that you plan to hunt the ditch and was wondering if it would be ok to go into his land a bit. I wonder what he would of said to that. I have been hunting ditches since I started hunting 20+ years a go. Nothing better than a nice looking dicth next to some cut corn grin.gif

This topic comes up every year on these boards so rather than debating it I contacted co's and county sheriffs. They both told me the same thing....have fun, there are a lot of birds out there! grin.gif

As far as the other ditches you speak of...no clue. Contact the county and the local co's. They will have the answer you are looking for. A bunch of guys on here debating will never give you the correct straight answers. When dealing with the law consult the law.

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CodyDawg

Actually, sherriffs and COs don't actually know all of the complicated real estate laws. In some cases, the road is an easement for the purpose of travel only on township roads making ditch hunting illegal if the land is posted. This is a very compicated issue and not all road ditches can be classified as legal to hunt nor can they be classified as illegal to hunt. The best thing to do is get permission, that solves everything. A little leg work before the season and you will have no problems finding places to hunt. If you wait until the season and are trying to hunt and obtain permission at the same time, you should realize that it will be that much harder. No excuses for not putting in your preparation time.

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LuciandTim

Quote:

Actually, sherriffs and COs don't actually know all of the complicated real estate laws. In some cases, the road is an easement for the purpose of travel only on township roads making ditch hunting illegal if the land is posted. This is a very compicated issue and not all road ditches can be classified as legal to hunt nor can they be classified as illegal to hunt. The best thing to do is get permission, that solves everything. A little leg work before the season and you will have no problems finding places to hunt. If you wait until the season and are trying to hunt and obtain permission at the same time, you should realize that it will be that much harder. No excuses for not putting in your preparation time.


Actually, sherriffs and COs are the ones who are going to give me a ticket if I am doing something wrong. So as long as they tell me I can do it then I guess the question is answered.

Hunting ditches can be great when alone. I especially like the ones next to cut corn. I do use my discretion though. If someone has a crp field up to the road I generally will not hunt that as my dog will have the tendency to want to get in the field that is why ditches along cut ag fields is the best route and the safest. wink.gif

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BobT

Giving you a ticket and paying the fine or doing the time are different things. The sherriff and COs are not judge and jury. They only enforce the laws to the best of their ability based on their understanding or interpretation of the law. It's ultimately up to the judge and/or jury to decide if they were correct in their interpretation.

We ALWAYS have the right to question the officers' judgement. Never forget that.

Bob

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CEDES

Let's see if this works ! Guys, I went to school for wildlife management, I FOLLOW THE RULES !! I LOVE WILDLIFE and RESPECT IT ! I respect farmers and property, wether it is mine or especially when it isn't, I pick cans and liter up on the dirt roads that I see, I have even come out of ditches with more garbage than birds smirk.gif more times than I care to remember. I did talk to the farmer, there was NO reason he said no, other than someone had to have pee'd in his cheerio's at one point in time, The only reason I even bothered to talk to him is, as My son and I were about to go, the equipment fired up, so I knew he was around, I told him I had spotted a bird in the far ditch (at least 500' from his yard) and I wanted him to know we would not be shooting this way and those were our intentions. He didn't have any land (huntable) to offer and there was no possible way to mistake a tresspass violation. I am thinking it was all on the up and up and I wanted to get my son wise in the way to conduct yourself, that asking permission yields good results even if you are turned away. I kinda glad I asked. I have a feeling this stinker would of come a yellin' . NOW, If I was alone (minus my 5 year old son) I might have handled this different. I KNOW THE LAWS, I would of initiated the 911 call and we could of settled it, but what does that solve ? I was just getting at, there is NO clear line in the Public ROW it is ALL how it is viewed from land owner, hunter situation. I find it best to not look over my shoulder that what a farmer might think they saw, I know some don't give a rip about it, IT HURTS THE REST OF US (real HUNTERS) when that occurs. PLEASE ASK ! the worst that can happen is they say NO, if shooting a bird is that important, pull down the road and shoot a pop can (pick it up of course) and stop and buy a chicken on your way home, heck they are already cleaned grin.gif

1022061012bgs6.th.jpg

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CodyDawg

Fantastic attitude CEDES, we need more like you. For some, it is all too important to get that bird. Leaving the legality argument aside for a minute you bring up a great point. Just to improve hunter/farmer/nonhunter relationships, it is ALWAYS best to ask.

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CEDES

Dawg-- Thank you for seeing my point grin.gif I concur, with what you said also, even when you are certain you are doing the right thing, if it can be taken a different way, you better believe it will be. In fear of sounding holyer than now blush.gif If hunters would take the little extra effort (not the "A" type personality) of it is MY RIGHT and the farmer would take a little extra effort and see for the better of the community (and their farm) it would benefit to have hunter / farmer / relationships, not to mention the youngsters !!! and the future of the sport (hunting and farming)

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      The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that, to date, there have been no reported cases of CWD infection in people. However, the CDC advises people not to eat meat from animals known to have CWD. Go to www.cdc.gov for more information. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Rick
      Pheasant hunters still have time to harvest roosters this December.  “We had a late corn harvest which affected the early pheasant season but things are shaping up nicely for late-season hunting,” said Nicole Davros, farmland wildlife research supervisor for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. “Additionally, despite the lower overall count on our roadside surveys this year, our rooster index went up slightly. This means there are still birds to chase out there.” Field conditions were wet enough that the corn harvest was significantly delayed this fall. “Now that the crops are out of the fields, there are fewer places to hide and hunters should be seeing more roosters,” Davros said. Despite warmer weather in late November, pheasants are already using both grassland cover and winter cover such as cattail sloughs and willow thickets, according to Scott Roemhildt, DNR Walk-in Access Program coordinator. “Hunters who are willing to work these tougher-to-reach areas will have opportunities to harvest birds,” Roemhildt said. “The colder weather in our forecast will make wetlands more accessible to hunters as the water freezes up.” Both Davros and Roemhildt agree that late-season pheasant hunting is a great excuse to get away from the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, regardless of whether any roosters are put in your bag. “Pheasant hunting is a great way to stretch your legs and clear your mind when things get hectic,” Davros said. Added Roemhildt: “It’s also a chance to introduce someone new to pheasant hunting as kids get time off from school and family comes to visit.” On Dec. 1, the daily bag limit increased to three roosters with a possession limit of nine roosters. Hunters need a small game license and a pheasant stamp to hunt pheasants in Minnesota. A small game license costs $22 for Minnesota residents age 18 to 64, and the pheasant stamp costs $7.50. Pheasant hunters 65 and older need to buy a small game license for $13.50 but are not required to buy a stamp. Hunters age 16 to 17 must buy a $5 small game license but do not need to buy a stamp, and hunters under 16 can hunt pheasants without a license or stamp. Hunters can also purchase a Walk-In Access validation for $3 to gain additional public hunting opportunities on private land that is enrolled in the program. As of September, 25,335 acres of land across 241 sites in western and southern Minnesota have been enrolled in the program. Minnesota’s 2017 pheasant season is open through Monday, Jan. 1. Shooting hours are 9 a.m. to sunset. Additional details on pheasant hunting are available at mndnr.gov/hunting/pheasant. Additional details on the Walk-In Access Program are available at mndnr.gov/walkin. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
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      The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is accepting public comments on an environmental assessment worksheet (EAW) prepared for the Wright Bog Horticultural Peat project in Carlton County, about 8 miles west of Cromwell.  Premier Horticulture, Inc. proposes to develop approximately 316 acres of the Wright Bog in Carlton County for horticultural peat extraction. The proposed site would be cleared and ditched, with drained water discharged into Little Tamarack River. Sphagnum moss peat would be collected using the milled peat vacuum harvesting method. The agency will take comments during a 30-day public review period ending at 4:30 p.m. Jan. 10. A copy of the EAW is available online on the project page.  A hard copy may be requested by calling 651-259-5126. The EAW is available for public review at: DNR library, 500 Lafayette Road, St. Paul. DNR northeast regional office, 1201 East Highway 2, Grand Rapids. Minneapolis Central Library, Government Documents, 2nd Floor, 300 Nicollet Mall. Duluth Public Library, 520 West Superior Street, Duluth. Carlton Public Library, 213 Chestnut Avenue, Carlton. McGregor Public Library, Center Avenue and Second Street, McGregor. The EAW notice will be published in the Dec. 11 EQB Monitor. Written comments must be submitted no later than 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 10, to the attention of Bill Johnson, EAW project manager, Environmental Policy and Review Unit, Ecological and Water Resources Division, DNR, 500 Lafayette Road, St. Paul, MN 55155-4025. Electronic or email comments may be sent to environmentalrev.dnr@state.mn.us with “Wright Bog” in the subject line. If submitting comments electronically, include name and mailing address. Written comments may also be sent by fax to 651-296-1811. Names and addresses will be published as part of the EAW record. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Rick
      A walleye stamp can be a gift for an angler that keeps giving, because stamp sales help the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources provide more places to fish for walleye by stocking walleye into lakes where there would be none. “Anyone can buy a walleye stamp any time of the year, even if they don’t have a fishing license,” said Neil Vanderbosch, DNR fisheries program consultant. “The collectible stamp is based on art chosen in our annual stamp contest.” Funds from walleye stamps go toward the cost of purchasing walleye from private fish farms for stocking into lakes. A walleye stamp is not required to fish for or keep walleye. There are several ways to purchase a walleye stamp. Anyone can go to a license agent and purchase a pictorial walleye stamp for $5.75, which is mailed to the buyer. Copies are on hand for purchase from the DNR License Center at 500 Lafayette Road in St. Paul. The stamps can be purchased online at mndnr.gov/buyalicense or by phone by calling 888-665-4236. Alternatively, a form can be downloaded from mndnr.gov/stamps and returned to the DNR to have the stamp mailed. Anglers with a fishing license can purchase the walleye stamp validation for $5, and for an extra 75 cents can have the pictorial stamp mailed to them. “True, everybody has to buy their own stamp, but there’s nothing stopping a person from giving away the collectible as a gift,” Vanderbosch said. “It could make a statement about how you helped improve an angler’s opportunity to catch walleye.” The overall walleye stocking effort ramps up each year in April when fisheries staff collect walleye eggs, fertilize them and transport the eggs to fish hatcheries around Minnesota. The eggs spend two to three weeks incubating before hatching into fry that are soon released – two thirds into lakes and one third into rearing ponds. The fish in rearing ponds grow into 4- to 6-inch fingerlings that are stocked into lakes in the fall. In addition to raising and stocking walleye, the DNR also buys walleye fingerlings from private producers to be stocked into lakes, and walleye stamp sales help pay for these fish. Since 2009, funds from the walleye stamp have purchased over 40,000 pounds of walleye fingerlings that have been stocked in the fall, all over the state. Walleye are stocked in lakes that don’t have naturally reproducing walleye populations. Anglers catch the lion’s share of walleye from waters where the fish reproduce naturally – about 260 larger walleye lakes and in large rivers. Because of stocking, walleye can be found in an additional 1,050 Minnesota lakes spread throughout the state. More information about habitat stamps can be found at mndnr.gov/stamps. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Rick
      The deadline for firearms wild turkey hunters to apply for early season spring hunting permits is Friday, Jan. 26, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. The spring season, which runs from Wednesday, April 18, to Thursday, May 31, is divided into six time periods. Only people age 18 and older who want to hunt using a firearm during the first two time periods (A or B) need to apply for a spring turkey permit. Permits for the remaining time periods (C-F) can be purchased over-the-counter. Archery and youth turkey hunters can hunt the entire season without applying for the lottery. Permits for the last four time periods and youth licenses are sold starting March 1. Surplus adult licenses from the first two time periods, if available, are sold starting around mid-March. People applying for permit area 511, the Carlos Avery State Wildlife Management Area, are advised that the sanctuary portion of the WMA will be closed to turkey hunting except for the special hunt for hunters with disabilities. For turkey hunting, a person may only use shotguns 20 gauge or larger, including muzzleloading shotguns. Only fine shot size No. 4 and smaller diameter may be used, and red dot scopes and range finders are legal. Visit mndnr.gov/hunting/turkey for more information about turkey hunting. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Rick
      The commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has appointed 11 Minnesotans to three-year terms on citizen oversight committees that monitor the agency’s fish and wildlife spending.  The appointees are responsible for reviewing the DNR’s annual Game and Fish Fund report in detail and, following discussions with agency leaders and others, prepare reports on their findings. Appointed to the Wildlife Oversight Committee are Garry Hooghkirk, Duluth; Amanda Leabo, Fergus Falls; Mark Popovich, Welch; John Schnedler, Richfield; and Martha Taggett, Golden Valley. Appointed to the Fisheries Oversight Committee are Karl Anderson, Greenbush; Jess Edberg, Ely; Nicole Hertel, Shoreview; Benjamin Kohn, Hudson; Mark Owens, Austin; and Craig Pagel, Duluth. The new appointees join other members whose terms are continuing. The committees will resume work after the mid-December publication of the DNR’s Game and Fish Fund report for fiscal year 2017. “We look forward to working with these citizens,” said Dave Schad, DNR deputy commissioner. “The appointments continue our commitment to share detailed budget information, bring new participants into the oversight process and ensure revenue generated by hunting and fishing license sales is used appropriately.” The Fisheries and Wildlife oversight committees continue a citizen oversight function first created in 1994. Sixty people applied for oversight committee positions this time. Factors in choosing the new appointees included geographic distribution, demographic diversity and a mix of interests. In the weeks ahead, committee chairs and four members will be selected by each committee to serve on an umbrella Budgetary Oversight Committee chaired by another appointee, John Lenczewski. The committee will develop an overall report on expenditures for game and fish activities. Those recommendations will be delivered to the DNR commissioner and legislative committees with jurisdiction over natural resources financing for further consideration. Minnesota’s Game and Fish Fund is the fiscal foundation for much of the state’s core natural resource management functions. About $110 million a year is deposited into this fund from hunting and fishing license sales, a sales tax on lottery tickets, and other sources of revenue including a reimbursement based on a federal excise tax on certain hunting, fishing and boating equipment. Past DNR Game and Fish Fund expenditure reports and citizen oversight committee reports are also available at mndnr.gov/gamefishoversight. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Rick
      Conservation grants awarded by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources will help restore, enhance and protect habitat throughout the state.  This latest round of 73 conservation grants is funded by the agency’s Conservation Partners Legacy (CPL) grant program. Now in its ninth year, the program has awarded over $50 million to nonprofit organizations and government entities for conservation projects. The DNR recently received $9.9 million in grant requests from 86 applicants during round one of the application cycle. The DNR has funded $7.5 million of these requests. “Projects include habitat improvements that benefit deer, turkey, pheasants and a wide variety of species,” said Jessica Lee, DNR conservation grants coordinator. “Oak savanna, wetlands and pollinator habitat are restored through this grant program, to give a few examples.” Conservation groups and others interested in applying in the future are encouraged to plan in the coming months so they can apply when funds are again available. The DNR’s CPL program provides grants ranging from $5,000 to $400,000 to conservation nonprofit organizations and government to help fund projects to restore, enhance or protect fish and wildlife habitat in Minnesota. The Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council recommended the grant program, which was approved by the Minnesota Legislature and has been in place since 2009. Funding has been provided annually from the Outdoor Heritage Fund, which is part of the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment and funded by a voter-approved statewide sales tax of three-eighths of 1 percent. Round one of the proposals for fiscal year 2017 included the traditional grant cycle, the metro grant cycle and the expedited grant cycle. The expedited cycle for standard types of projects is currently open for another funding round, with the maximum grant award being $50,000. Applications are due online by 4 p.m. Friday, Jan. 19. More information on the program’s grant cycles, and a complete list of the most recent grant applications and past awarded projects are on the DNR website at mndnr.gov/cpl. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.