News release: Fish and Wildlife Almanac, Aug. 29

August 29, 2022

Registration open for DNR outdoor skills webinars

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources invites Minnesotans interested in wildlife, fishing and outdoor skills to tune in to upcoming webinars that will discuss tips on hunting ammunition and how to dress for the outdoors, and also to register for a new lineup of webinars happening into the fall. 

The first upcoming webinar is at noon Wednesday, Aug. 31. Kraig Kiger, DNR shooting sports coordinator, and James Burnham, DNR R3 coordinator, will lead a talk on hunting ammunition. The webinar will include two guests from Federal Ammunition: Jon Zinnel, senior manager of conservation and youth education programs, and Eric Miller, production manager of rifle ammunition and components. The group will discuss bullets, options for different game, and other tips to consider when purchasing ammo.

The second webinar is at noon Wednesday, Sept. 7. Becoming an Outdoors Woman program volunteers will discuss how to be successful in the outdoors by dressing for the elements. The webinar will cover fundamental principles about fabrics and layering that can help a person make their time outdoors comfortable and enjoyable. There will be a special focus on outdoor clothing designed specifically for women.

Webinar topics this fall will include grouse and deer hunting, birding, wildlife research and photography, opportunities at Minnesota state parks including how to get active in some of Minnesota’s amazing natural places and Free Park Day on Friday, Nov. 25, fat-tire biking in the winter, and fishing for northern pike.

The webinars are part of the DNR’s Minnesota Outdoor Skills and Stewardship Series. The webinars are free but registration is required. More information is available on the outdoor skills and stewardship page of the DNR website.

Harvest slot relaxed for fall walleye fishing on Mille Lacs

Mille Lacs Lake walleye anglers will see a relaxed harvest slot for walleye fishing beginning Thursday, Sept. 1.

As announced in March of this year, the one-fish walleye limit will resume on Mille Lacs on Sept. 1. In an expansion of the harvest slot announced in mid-August, fall anglers will be able to harvest one walleye 20-23 inches or one longer than 26 inches, with fishing allowed from 6 a.m. to midnight. The original walleye harvest slot for fall fishing on Mille Lacs this year was one fish 21-23 inches or one longer than 28 inches.

Regulations for all other species remain unchanged. Walleye regulations for the winter season, which begins Thursday, Dec. 1, will be announced in November. Information on DNR fisheries management and research, citizen engagement and Mille Lacs area recreation opportunities is available on the DNR website.

DNR reminds hunters to watch for wild ricers during early waterfowl seasons

Minnesota waterfowl hunters taking part in early teal and goose hunting seasons in September need to be aware and cautious of wild rice harvesters, because wild rice is ripening at the same time as these early waterfowl hunting seasons.

Minnesota’s experimental early teal season runs from Saturday, Sept. 3, through Wednesday, Sept. 7, with shooting hours from sunrise to sunset. This year’s early goose season runs from Saturday, Sept. 3 through Sunday, Sept. 18, with shooting hours from 30 minutes before sunrise until sunset.

The Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe and the White Earth Nation have closed all wild rice waters within the boundaries of their respective reservations to all over-water waterfowl hunting during the traditional wild rice harvest. Both the experimental early teal season (Sept. 3-7) and the early goose season (Sept. 3-18) are affected by these closures.

The DNR advises all waterfowl hunters to be aware of these tribal restrictions and urges hunters who have planned to hunt within the boundaries of the Leech Lake or White Earth reservations to contact each tribe’s natural resource department for more information:

The DNR also reminds those taking part in the youth waterfowl hunt on Sept. 10-11 to be aware of tribal restrictions within the boundaries of the Leech Lake or White Earth reservations. From Sept. 10-11, waterfowl hunters ages 17 and younger, when accompanied by a non-hunting adult (age 18 and older), may take ducks, geese, mergansers, coots and moorhens from a half-hour before sunrise to sunset.

Since wild rice is ripening at the same time as Minnesota’s early waterfowl hunting seasons, over-water waterfowl hunters are urged to be aware of and cautious about wild ricers no matter where they hunt.

Access to complete information on Minnesota’s waterfowl hunting seasons is available from the DNR’s waterfowl hunting webpage. Complete regulations and the illustrated guide also are available in Hmong, Karen, Somali and Spanish.

Hunters asked not to shoot ear-tagged, radio-collared research bears

The Minnesota bear hunting season opens Thursday, Sept. 1, and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is once again asking hunters to avoid shooting marked research bears. These bears are marked with distinctively large, colorful ear tags and wear radio collars.

Researchers with the DNR are monitoring 25 radio-collared black bears across the state, especially in bear hunting zones 25, 27, 45 and 451, and in parts of the no-quota zone. Most of the radio-collared bears live in or near the Chippewa National Forest, Camp Ripley Military Reserve, the Pillsbury State Forest, and the Brainerd/Baxter area. The bears also range widely from these sites. More information for hunters is available in a previous news release and photos of collared research bears and some research findings gained from them are available on the DNR bear management page.

Reminder: Deer lottery application deadline Sept. 8

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources reminds firearm and muzzleloader hunters who want to harvest antlerless deer in a deer permit area designated as antlerless permit lottery this hunting season to purchase their license by Thursday, Sept. 8. Hunters who purchase their license on or before this date are automatically entered into the lottery for the deer permit area or special hunt area they declare.

Successful applicants will receive a postcard in the mail authorizing them to take an antlerless deer using their regular license in that antlerless permit lottery area. No application is needed to take antlerless deer in permit areas with either sex, two-deer limit, three-deer limit or five-deer limit designations.

Hunters who want to participate in special firearm or muzzleloader deer hunts also need to apply for permits that are issued through a lottery. That application deadline is also Sept. 8.

More information about designations and regulations for deer permit areas, as well as details about special hunt opportunities, are available on the DNR website and in the 2022 Minnesota Hunting and Trapping Regulations Handbook, which is available in print wherever DNR licenses are sold.