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MooseTrack
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06/21/2017 08:24AM
Just Received this from the USFS and passing it on for your information.

We took a bunch of bear reports yesterday. Please share the information with visitors travelling into these lakes:

• Agnes Bear (US Agnes in LaCroix District):
Here is an example of a nuisance bear or two created by human behavior. We’ve had a number of complaints about a bear coming into campsites on all sides of Agnes. On one of the sites close to the portage into Oyster, a bear drank a container of Canola oil last week. Another group discovered garbage bags with fish guts buried next to the portage and also behind a campsite on the south side. That reporter said the whole area reeks of rotten fish. Another bear report came from the east side of the lake—a small bear with brown fur looking for food.

• Boulder Bay of Lac LaCroix bear: this bear carried away a bear resistant container holding only toothpaste and camp cups. We won’t have details on this one until the group returns from the BWCAW.

• Wind Bay of Basswood bear: Site #105 at the top western entrance into Wind Bay a bear was reported. No details other than some campers put duct tape on a tree and wrote ‘bear’ on it. The tape has been removed.

• Please remind visitors that when considering fish on their stringer, they should look back at their site, think ‘how close do I want a bear to come to my site?’ Paddle that distance away, check the map to be sure you’re not getting close to another site or portage, go into shore, clean the fish, carry the remains back into the woods away from the shoreline, and scatter the remains on the ground. No garbage bags, no digging, no dropping guts into the water—especially at the edge of the campsite.


Rebecca Manlove
Information Assistant
Forest Service
Superior National Forest, Kawishiwi Ranger District
p: 218-365-2093
rmanlove@fs.fed.us

1393 Highway 169
Ely, MN 55731
www.fs.fed.us


Caring for the land and serving people

 
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airmorse
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06/21/2017 08:57AM
Garbage bags with fish guts? Wonderful...

Perhaps having some bear activity will help keep those who should not be there anyway away.
06/21/2017 12:22PM
Interesting on the Boulder Bay report!
06/21/2017 12:56PM
I'll bet that bear who drank all that canola oil is going to be wreaking havoc on some thunderboxes in the area! Lol.
bpneiman
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06/21/2017 04:52PM
Is the preferred method now to scatter the fish remains in the woods away from any camps? When I last went in 2008 and 2009 everyone talked about burying them.
BigCurrent
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06/21/2017 07:40PM
My dad was up there last week and ran into a couple that had 2 bears in camp on Agnes and couldn't scare them away, they moved camp to Nina Moose.

I've never understood the fish remains in the woods rule. That is the one rule I go out of my way to break. When we clean fish, the remains go into the lake. The remains sink, and go back into the lake bed.

Why on earth would they recommend putting fish remains in the woods, considering how much of a bear attractant they are?
treehorn
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06/22/2017 07:25AM
quote bpneiman: "Is the preferred method now to scatter the fish remains in the woods away from any camps? When I last went in 2008 and 2009 everyone talked about burying them."

As you can see by BigCurrent's post, it's a controversial topic...but yes I believe current guidelines and rangers who are going by the book will tell you to throw the remains in the woods, away from the lake and any campsites.
MikeinMpls
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06/22/2017 08:28AM
I ask about disposal of fish remains every time I pick up my permit (I haven't watched the video in a decade, so I don't ever know what the video is instructing about fish remains).... I ask because the policy has flip-flopped over the years, even before the video was required.

I'm a catch and release fisherman, and I still don't catch many fish to release. BUT.... if I catch a walleye, I'd like the opportunity to have it for dinner!

Mike
Walleye whisperer
Guest Paddler
 
06/22/2017 01:37PM
We just got back yesterday from our third trip to BWCA and stayed on Agnes. On Monday night this week we encountered a bear that was looking for food on the 2 campsites on the north shore and closest to the boulder river (Not sure which campsite numbers). It was not willing to leave and one of our party members was not interested in staying so we relocated. Definitely was looking for food and not worried about us. I felt a if we didn't do much to draw it in ad the wind was blowing out and we cleaned our fish a long ways away and properly disposed of the remains. Just wanted to contribute as I have gained much info over the last few years from contributors and appreciate the information obtained. Can't wait for the next trip!
bpneiman
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06/22/2017 08:17PM
I guess this is as good of a time as any to ask. I hear a few stories each year of a bear that won't go away and people moving camps. Are these bears just hanging around the periphery of camps and people just pack up and go? Or do they leave and come back to get their gear? I guess if a bear is around, I have a hard time turning my back on it to pack everything up.

To be clear I'm not worried about bears because we keep a very clean camp. Just wondering what actually goes on in these situations, and want to be prepared.
joewildlife
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06/24/2017 08:06PM
Never seen a bear in Quetico. They tell you to pop the swim bladders and deep six your fish in deep water away from camp. Or put the remains on a rock on an island away from camp and let the birds have them. Putting fish remains in the woods, anywhere, just doesn't make sense, and burying them makes even less. In the Q, I always clean my fish away from camp. If I catch them from camp, I take a quick paddle to an island or shore away from camp to clean them and deep six the remains. Haven't been to BWCA in several years...
06/25/2017 01:29AM
Thanks to the OP for posting this. My nephew is doing the border route in a few days and I forwarded the info to him.

Wonder what type of "bear resistant" container that was taken? I sent my Ursack and BV500 with him to use so hopefully he will not have any issues. He does keep a clean camp but that doesn't mean the previous campers did!
Pinetree
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06/25/2017 08:40AM
quote joewildlife: "Never seen a bear in Quetico. They tell you to pop the swim bladders and deep six your fish in deep water away from camp. Or put the remains on a rock on an island away from camp and let the birds have them. Putting fish remains in the woods, anywhere, just doesn't make sense, and burying them makes even less. In the Q, I always clean my fish away from camp. If I catch them from camp, I take a quick paddle to an island or shore away from camp to clean them and deep six the remains. Haven't been to BWCA in several years...
"


Its a good way to to get rid of fish remains. Yes away from campsite-deeper water. No problem with me. That is where the fish came from and returning some of the original nutrients that maybe minnows or crayfish will feed on.
QueticoMike
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06/25/2017 01:09PM
quote Pinetree: "quote joewildlife: "Never seen a bear in Quetico. They tell you to pop the swim bladders and deep six your fish in deep water away from camp. Or put the remains on a rock on an island away from camp and let the birds have them. Putting fish remains in the woods, anywhere, just doesn't make sense, and burying them makes even less. In the Q, I always clean my fish away from camp. If I catch them from camp, I take a quick paddle to an island or shore away from camp to clean them and deep six the remains. Haven't been to BWCA in several years...
"



Its a good way to to get rid of fish remains. Yes away from campsite-deeper water. No problem with me. That is where the fish came from and returning some of the original nutrients that maybe minnows or crayfish will feed on."


Yep, go out in the middle of the lake and deep 6 them. Turtles need to eat too :) Thanks for the info on the bears.
Pinetree
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06/25/2017 01:42PM
Wonder how the blueberries look?
LindenTree3
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06/25/2017 05:20PM
In Alaska we are required to deep six our fish remains in the lake or fast moving water, bears are a contstant problem here.

I'm retiring soon and will be moving back to Mn, and paddling in the BW again.
I hope I never occupy a campsite where people have buried fish remains anywhere near it.
The Great Outdoors
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06/25/2017 06:04PM
quote BigCurrent:
I've never understood the fish remains in the woods rule. That is the one rule I go out of my way to break. When we clean fish, the remains go into the lake. The remains sink, and go back into the lake bed.
Why on earth would they recommend putting fish remains in the woods, considering how much of a bear attractant they are?"

Amen!!!
Putting fish guts in the woods makes absolutely no sense.
Bet that rule came out of Forest Service headquarters by someone that has only seen a fish on a plate in a restaurant!
Sheeeeeesh! :(
06/25/2017 07:18PM
I've posted this a couple of times so I apologize in advance for the repetition however I camped with my family on Brule two summers ago. We found a nice campsite on the north side in a secluded bay. After setting up camp, we noticed a strong odor of decaying fish. Not a pleasant smell --- probably caused by the half a dozen or more pike carcasses down by the waterline. We cleaned them up and disposed of them and then informed the two rangers who stopped by the next day to check permits on the lake. They thanked us and let us know that they factor the feedback into their talks/orientations when folks pick up their permits.
thistlekicker
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06/25/2017 09:10PM
My guess is the whole "bury fish in the woods thing" is a result of understanding that most people, if told to "put the fish carcasses back in the lake, but a long way from shore", will either not hear, not remember, or simply disregard the second part of that sentence ("a long way from shore") and will just huck them into the water from their campsite, which is (arguably) just as bad as burying them back in the woods.

I'm not a big fan of "feeding the gulls" - those sky rats don't need any help from us. Deep-six the bodies...
Pinetree
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06/25/2017 09:18PM
Guest Paddler
 
06/29/2017 11:31AM
If a bear can find a dirty diaper buried at the bottom of 20' of rubbish in the Grand Marais dump (great entertainment when it was open!) how deterred do you think it'll be finding fish guts buried a foot or two behind camp? NOT VERY!!!
johnMN
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09/03/2019 10:37AM
Following. Thanks for posting.
09/03/2019 12:03PM
You did notice these posts are 2 years old.....
bumabu
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09/03/2019 12:05PM
Deep 6 them, but don't forget to pop the air bladder. I would guess that many people skipping that step is what drives policy more than anything else.
Selfsuffi
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09/03/2019 02:25PM
cowdoc: "You did notice these posts are 2 years old....."

I was reading from the top down thinking it was current.....right until the ghost of TGO posted and stopped and looked at the date. I am sad this was an old post, I miss TGO's input. Now I will have the same feeling whenever I see an old post come back around with comments from Ozark Paddler... Two weeks from tomorrow and I will be heading north :) Maybe the spirits of TGO and Oz will help the wind blow at my back and the fish bite my bait. To those no longer able to actively post anymore may your memory stay with us in older posts. :)
09/03/2019 02:44PM
As it turns out there is another nuisance bear on Agnes once again. From VNO.
Pinetree
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09/03/2019 03:06PM
Selfsuffi: "cowdoc: "You did notice these posts are 2 years old....."


I was reading from the top down thinking it was current.....right until the ghost of TGO posted and stopped and looked at the date. I am sad this was an old post, I miss TGO's input. Now I will have the same feeling whenever I see an old post come back around with comments from Ozark Paddler... Two weeks from tomorrow and I will be heading north :) Maybe the spirits of TGO and Oz will help the wind blow at my back and the fish bite my bait. To those no longer able to actively post anymore may your memory stay with us in older posts. :)"


Nice
x2jmorris
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09/03/2019 10:14PM
I am so glad to see others say they deep six the remains. It makes complete sense to do that. Turtles and other stuff will eat that up in no time. My old pup that sadly is no longer around would always find the buried fish in the woods and roll in it. Maybe if you could really bury it then it would be alright but everyone only goes like an inch deep.
Pinetree
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09/03/2019 10:18PM
x2jmorris: "I am so glad to see others say they deep six the remains. It makes complete sense to do that. Turtles and other stuff will eat that up in no time. My old pup that sadly is no longer around would always find the buried fish in the woods and roll in it. Maybe if you could really bury it then it would be alright but everyone only goes like an inch deep."

I have zero problem deep six them. You caught them there and returning some of the nutrients. Like mentioned before-do it in deep water and bust the air bladder.
ZaraSp00k
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09/04/2019 12:24PM
it looks like the majority here is "out of sight, out of mind"
although I wonder what's really happening to it

I place the remains on shore, a point if possible, far from camp, preferably opposite side of lake (I wil gather water on the return ), this might be a problem in Ontario with no dedicated camp sites, but if I figure if I think a site is unsuitable, so will the next guy and hopefully the remains are gone if by the time anybody uses it

whatever is drawn to the remains is entertainment so it serves two purposes

burying or throwing into the woods is not an option
missmolly
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09/04/2019 02:06PM
BWCA.com = Bears Will Conquer All.com
TechnoScout
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09/04/2019 03:26PM
Pinetree: "x2jmorris: "I am so glad to see others say they deep six the remains. It makes complete sense to do that. Turtles and other stuff will eat that up in no time. My old pup that sadly is no longer around would always find the buried fish in the woods and roll in it. Maybe if you could really bury it then it would be alright but everyone only goes like an inch deep."


I have zero problem deep six them. You caught them there and returning some of the nutrients. Like mentioned before-do it in deep water and bust the air bladder."


I just checked the recreation.gov site for the latest on this rule:
What should be done with food leftovers, live bait and fish remains?

"Try to plan your meals so you don’t have leftovers. If you do, pack them out. Dispose of fish remains at least 200 feet from campsites, trails, portages, and shorelines. MN state law prohibits dumping unused bait into waters of the state. Unwanted live bait should be packed out with you and placed in the trash or compost bins. Dumping bait on the ground is littering."

200 ft off shore in the lake meets the requirement of this rule.
 
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