Manitoba Natural Resources and Northern Development advises conservation officers are continuing enforcement to protect Manitoba’s natural resources through a variety of enforcement activities across the province, including roadside checkstops in key locations to ensure compliance with natural resource and public safety legislation.
Throughout the 2023 open water fishing season on Pelican Lake, conservation officers and patrol officers have conducted angling compliance checks, laying 46 fisheries charges totalling $7,518 in fines and $1,974 in restitution. Eighteen individuals were charged for angling with barbed hooks, five individuals were charged for angling without a valid licence, and 22 individuals were charged for possessing fish that do not comply with size limits.
On July 23, while conducting angling compliance checks at Pelican Lake, Boissevain conservation officers directed a boat with two occupants to dock their boat. Instead, the driver quickly turned the vessel around, left the immediate area, and appeared to dump fish over the side of his boat. Officers made contact with the boat and determined several walleye were dumped overboard. The driver, from Winkler, was fined $2,542 for obstructing a fisheries officer. Seized walleye fillets were donated to a local food bank.
On July 23, Interlake conservation officers received information about a group loading fish into vehicles along the Fairford River. Officers stopped the vehicles on Provincial Trunk Highway 6. One individual from Winnipeg was in possession of three freshwater drums exceeding the 60 centimetre legal size limit. A second individual from Winnipeg was in possession of 32 freshwater drums, exceeding the legal limit by 22 fish. The pair were fined $679 and $1,302 in restitution.
On July 21, Cranberry Portage conservation officers received a call about a stranded boat with three individuals on Kisseynew Lake. Conservation officers and Cranberry Portage RCMP found the individuals on an island, where the trio had managed to paddle to and start a campfire, after their boat broke down. The individuals were safely returned to shore.
On June 30, Interlake conservation officers received information regarding two individuals who had checked out of a lodge and were fishing from shore at the boat launch in Grand Rapids. When approached by officers, the pair claimed they did not have any fish. Officers later observed one individual put something in a nearby brush pile. Officers found four walleye wrapped in paper towels, two of which measured under the legal size of 35 centimetres. After checking their vehicle, it was determined that the pair were in possession of 11 walleye, three over the legal limit. The two individuals from Winnipeg received a total of $381 in fines and $126 in restitution.
On June 4 at about 2 p.m., Cranberry Portage conservation officers received a report of a missing 67-year-old South Dakota man who had been fishing at Loucks Falls in Grass River Provincial Park. Manitoba conservation officers and the Manitoba Wildfire Service mobilized a wildfire helicopter crew to help with the search. At approximately 8 p.m., the man was found along the shore about a kilometre from his last known location with minor injuries. The man was transported by boat back to his lodgings.
Anyone with information on illegal activity is asked to call a local Natural Resources and Northern Development office or the Turn in Poachers (TIP) line at 1-800-782-0076.
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