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5/21/2020
Publisher’s Note: As referenced in the May-June 2020 print issue of On Wisconsin Outdoors, the Ellis column Memorial Day-Trading it all… directs the reader to this website for stories of Americans in battle during World War II and Vietnam.  Posted in the April 30 Ellis Blogs on this website Tanks in a Mine Field is the eye witness story of 709th Tank Battalion gunner John “Mike” Kunnen during the bloody battle of t...
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Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Outdoor Report summary for May 1, 2014

Complete DNR Outdoor Report (Reports from conservation wardens, wildlife and fisheries staff and property managers from around the state)

Last vestiges of snow are finally disappearing in the Northwoods

The last vestiges of snow are finally disappearing in the Northwoods, with only snow piles and a small amount of snow in heavily wooded areas remaining in the Northern Highland-American Legion State Forest.

Grass is greening up across the state and wildlife have been on the move. Deer sightings are up in many areas as does chase off last year's young in preparation for fawning this spring. Drivers should slow down and watch for deer feeding on grass along roadsides.

Things are also drying out and spring fire danger is finally rising, especially in the southwest. In the past week, 41 wildfires burned 62 acres in DNR protection areas. Most fires were kept to less than one acre but there was a 15-acre fire in Jackson County caused by debris burning.

Ice cover remains on many lakes in the far north, but most ice should be going out with warm temperatures and rain in the forecast this week, except for some of the larger waters such as Trout Lake in Vilas County. Rivers are high and flowing very fast due to snow melt and recent rains.

In more slack water areas on the Wisconsin River anglers are catching good numbers of walleye. Some smaller male walleye were caught on the Fox River below the De Pere dam; however, the arrival of carp convinced many anglers that the walleye run is nearing the end.

Many anglers took to the waters of Green Bay this past weekend in hopes of hauling in some smallmouth bass and northern pike but the success rates were low, possibly due to the cold water temperatures. Anglers fishing from the Sturgeon Bay breakwater had success catching lake and brown trout. The steelhead run on the West and East Twin rivers continued and anglers experienced good action, but action has slowed on many other tributaries.

Sturgeon began their spawning push below the Shawano Dam this week and should continue to heavily spawn into the weekend. Fisheries crews were able to collect eggs for multiple lake sturgeon restoration programs, while also tagging roughly 350 fish.

Turkey hunters are reporting a lot of success with many two year old toms being harvested. A recent field survey found great turkey reproduction potential this spring with eight turkey nests containing 72 eggs. Many of the hens were done laying and were now incubating the eggs. The first Canada goose broods of the year have also been reported. Now is the time of the year that many animals will leave their young unattended while the adults feed so please do not pick up baby wild animals thinking that they are orphaned. Most of the time the adult is nearby feeding. Please keep wildlife wild.

Several consecutive nights of warmer temperatures and favorable southerly winds have ushered large numbers of migrating birds into the region. Birders are now reporting Baltimore and orchard orioles, rose-breasted grosbeaks, indigo buntings, scarlet tanagers, ruby-throated hummingbirds, and 25-plus warbler species. In the north, ruffed, sharp-tailed, and spruce grouse are drumming and performing their courtship activities in earnest finally.

Dutchman's breeches, hepatica's, blood root, ginger, spring beauty, marsh marigold and wood violets are all blooming in wooded areas. Prairie flowers that are blooming include pasque flower, prairie smoke, bird's-foot violet and hoary puccoon. Many fiddleheads are popping up and reports of morels are trickling in.

Archived under: Previous Outdoor Reports

DNR Outdoor Report in Portable Document Format (Requires Adobe® Acrobat® Reader®)

DNR Outdoor Report in Rich Text Format

Upcoming Events at DNR Parks, Forests and Trails

Outdoor Report editors: 
Paul Holtan, DNR Office of Communications, Madison 
608-267-7517 or paul.holtan@wisconsin.gov 
Nolan Pickar, DNR Communications Specialist, Madison
608-535-2925 or Nolan.Pickar@Wisconsin.gov