Hunters, trappers and wildlife watchers in Beltrami, Hubbard and Clearwater counties benefit from the management, habitat and oversight work of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources' Bemidji area wildlife staff.
Area Supervisor Dave Rave and a full-time staff of two assistant area supervisors oversee an area that includes 1.6 million acres of public and private land. This includes 49 Wildlife Management Areas totaling more than 5,700 acres. Rave and his staff also help coordinate wildlife management on thousands of acres of state forestry-administered lands, plus collaborative wild rice management with Ducks Unlimited on 15 lakes providing more than 8,000 acres of enhanced waterfowl hunting opportunities.
The Bemidji work area, where the western prairie and northern boreal forest meets, provides some of the most diverse hunting and trapping in the state. It also features some of the best wild rice lakes in the world. It is known for superior hunting for deer, bear, ruffed grouse, waterfowl and sharp-tailed grouse.
- What we do
At work for you
Streams that flood roads and broken gates are examples of degrading infrastructure that directly impacts hunters and wildlife watchers.
- Providing habitat enhancement and protection, as well as wildlife population technical guidance, to private landowners, local governments and non-profit groups in Beltrami, Clearwater and Hubbard counties.
- Annually coordinating, planning and administering timber stand improvements on forested WMAs and coordinating on DNR forestry lands for the benefit of wildlife. This work is implemented through forest plans based on ecological subsections, portions of four subsections are part of the Bemidji work area.
- Responding annually to numerous nuisance wildlife calls, including bear, deer, goose, beaver, raccoon and skunk property and crop damage.
- Mowing and enhancing more than 70 miles of designated Hunter Walking Trails on DNR wildlife and Forestry Administered land.
- Coordinating with American Bird Conservancy, Ducks Unlimited and other Conservation groups on habitat projects.
- Conducting various wildlife population surveys throughout the work area, including those for waterfowl, grouse and predators.