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Regas relocates within the Blackduck district

A new face will be patrolling in the Blackduck one station for the Department of Natural Resources.

Conservation officer Demo Regas, who most recently worked the Blackduck two station, was appointed on Feb. 12 to fill the vacancy in Blackduck one.

“I want to introduce myself to the community,” Regas said. “Some of them already know me but there’s a number of them that don’t.”

The Blackduck one area covers the Puposky, Blackduck, Shooks, Busy Corner, Turtle River and Tenstrike areas. It reaches from Turtle River north to Highway 1 and from the Beltrami County line west to County Road 23 and County Road 203.

Regas will continue to cover the Blackduck two station until that vacancy is filled. Blackduck two covers the Kelliher, Waskish and Upper Red Lake areas.

Keith Backer most recently held the Blackduck one position and retired in November.

“I know Keith Backer had a long, distinguished career in the area,” Regas said. “And I’d like to give the same level of the service that Keith had.”

Regas tailors his days and weeks to cover station needs, which change with every season. However, at all times of the year he answers calls ranging from animal and wildlife issues to recreational enforcement. Regas encourages anyone to call him with questions, which he will do his best to answer.

“If I can’t answer the question directly at that time, I make it a goal to find out that answer and get back to them with the correct answer and if I can’t find the correct answer I will get them in touch with somebody who will be able to answer the question,” Regas said.

If a resident isn’t comfortable speaking with Regas directly, he recommends they call the T.I.P. (Turn in Poachers) line at 800-652-9093.

Regas wants to give the community a friendly reminder that Beltrami County is still free of invasive species. He encourages boaters and landowners to continue taking precautions against invasive species by keeping bait wells drained and dry, and removing plugs while boats are in transport.

He also reminds landowners who purchase water equipment like docks or boat lifts to find out what lakes the equipment has been in previously. According to Regas, there is a washing procedure that can be done if the equipment was in an infected lake, and there is also a 21-day dry period required.

Regas was born and raised in Duluth, Minn., and following high school graduation he was on active duty in the Marine Corps for six years. He then attended Hibbing Community College and received his associate of applied science degree in law enforcement.

The first position Regas held was for the Grand Marais Police Department as a patrolman and he then moved onto the Pennington County Sheriff’s Office and the Paul Bunyan Drug Task Force. There, Regas worked out of Bemidji and covered a 10-county area working with narcotics investigations.

From 1997 to 2012, he worked for the Bemidji Police Department as a police officer and also had another detail with the Paul Bunyan Drug Task Force and the Headwaters Safe Trails Task Force.

In 2012, Regas made a lateral move to the Department of Natural Resources working as a conservation officer for the Blackduck two station.

Regas can be reached at 218-835-2316 or by email at

“I encourage anybody out there to give me a call with any questions,” Regas said. “Nothing is too obscure and everything’s worth looking into.”

Jillian Gandsey

Jillian Gandsey is the Multimedia Editor at the Bemidji Pioneer. She is an Iron Range native and a 2013 graduate of Bemidji State University. Follow Jillian on Twitter and Instagram @jilliangandsey. Contact her at 218-333-9786, 218-996-1216 or at 

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