Asian longhorned beetle is a highly destructive, invasive pest that
can kill maple, birch, elm, willow and other hardwood trees. Since
national Tree Check Month,
people are encouraged to keep an eye out for this invader that is
known to be in Ohio, New York, Massachusetts and Ontario. Reporting
sightings or signs of this pest can help prevent widespread tree loss
A native of China and
Korea, the Asian longhorned beetle (Anoplophora glabripennis) is
considered an invasive species in the United States. Adult beetles
have bullet-shaped bodies from 3/4 inch to 1-1/2 inches long. This
beetle is shiny black with white spots and long,
black-and-white-striped antennae. Its legs and feet may be bluish in
A similar beetle
native to Michigan is often mistaken for the Asian longhorned beetle.
The white spotted
pine sawyer (Monochamus scutellatus) has a distinctive white spot
below the base of its head – between the tops of its wing covers.
This, and it being brown or dull black in color, distinguishes the
sawyer from the Asian longhorned beetle.
sees Asian longhorned beetle or its signs or symptoms is asked to
report it. If you can capture the insect, look to see if it has a spot
between the top of its wing covers – if so, it likely is a white
spotted pine sawyer. If not, place the insect in a jar and freeze it.
Take photos, note the location and report it as soon as possible by
email to the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development
by phone to 800-292-3939 or online to the Midwest Invasive Species
Information Network at
details on the Michigan Invasive Species website’s Asian longhorned
16AUG18-Michiganders looking to learn a new outdoor pursuit, or get
better at one, have a unique opportunity with the DNR’s Outdoor Skills
The Outdoor Skills
Academy brings expert instructors to locations around the state for
classes on a range of outdoor activities. Upcoming examples include an
award-winning nature photographer who will teach a workshop on
photographing birds and a collegiate coach and Olympic instructor who
will lead an archery class.
Academy classes are unique in that they explore these topics in-depth
– for a full day or more, with knowledgeable and skilled instructors
leading the way – at an affordable cost,” said Jon Spieles, DNR field
manager for educational services.
Tom Haxby, a
nature and wildlife photographer from Kingsley, Michigan, will teach a
photographing birds workshop
Aug. 18-19 at P.J. Hoffmaster State Park in Muskegon. Haxby’s
photographs (like the one above) have been chosen among the top 250
photos by the North American Nature Photography Association, among
other awards, and have been published in numerous books, magazine
covers and articles, and calendars.
The class will cover
effective use of photography equipment and techniques and will include
time in the park to practice skills.
Becoming an Expert Archer,
a class coming to Ludington State Park Sept. 15, will feature
instructor Nick Di Cresce, a professional archer, Wayne State
University’s head archery coach and USA Olympic instructor.
Di Cresce will teach
participants about the safe and correct way to shoot a bow and arrow
and the various kinds of archery equipment. Participants will shoot at
targets throughout the class and will finish the day with a
competition for prizes.
at 231-798-3573 (bird photography workshop) or
at 231-843-9261(archery class).
16AUG18-Chronic wasting disease is a fatal neurological disease
that has been confirmed in free-ranging white-tailed deer in six
Michigan counties since the first confirmed positive in 2015. Last
fall, the DNR and Natural Resources Commission created the CWD Working
Group and challenged its members to identify more actions to
substantially mitigate CWD in Michigan.
The group's members (representing agriculture, sportsmen,
conservation and other related areas) talked with hunters, residents
and others around the state, looked at research, and spent time
developing several recommendations centered around communication,
research funding, biosecurity and regional cooperation and
Much of that work helped inform
new regulations for the 2018 deer hunting season,
which were approved last week at the Natural Resources Commission
meeting. Several CWD Working Group members also were recognized for
their efforts in a presentation at that meeting.
Learn more about chronic wasting disease at
communities and organizations across Michigan recently learned they’re
getting a share of $80,518 to support their tree-planting efforts. The
grants, from the DNR, the DTE Energy Foundation and ReLeaf Michigan,
will support the planting of 1,600 trees along streets and in parks
and other public spaces.
"Trees help to make
our communities and neighborhoods beautiful, healthy and vibrant
places,” said Kevin Sayers, DNR Urban and Community Forestry program
coordinator. “This program promotes properly locating and planting
trees to ensure they stay healthy for years to come.” The grants will
support the purchase of a variety of trees to be planted this fall or
The program is
part of a long-term DTE Energy Foundation/DNR initiative to partner
with communities, schools and nonprofits to take care of the
environment. Since the program’s founding, nearly 40,000 trees and
seedlings have been planted in 500-plus communities. The program,
funded by the DTE Energy Foundation, is administered through a
collaborative partnership between the DNR and the nonprofit ReLeaf
Michigan to increase opportunities for
community involvement statewide.
“The DTE Energy
Foundation is committed to supporting nonprofit organizations focused
on protecting Michigan’s natural resources,” said Lynette Dowler, DTE
Energy Foundation president.
partnership with the DNR and, more recently ReLeaf Michigan, has
helped more than 500 communities across the state become both more
beautiful and more environmentally friendly,” she said. “This is a
legacy of which we can all be proud.”
interested in launching volunteer tree plantings or educational events
are encouraged to contact ReLeaf Michigan at 800-642-7353 or visit
For more on
DTE Energy Foundation
and its programs, contact Anne O’Dell 313-235-5555.
For a list of approved grants
or information on the Urban and Community Forestry program, contact
at 517-284-5898 or visit
start of the school year fast approaching for many, don’t forget to
include Michigan’s wildlife in your class plans.
The DNR offers a
variety of wildlife classroom curricula at the elementary, junior high
and high school levels, and each program is developed to fit current
state educational standards. Better yet, they're free to
educators! Topics include:
Elk University. One hundred years ago, wild
elk were brought to Michigan to re-establish the state’s elk
population. High school students are put in the role of wildlife
managers, while learning about this conservation success story
through Elk University. These lessons also include Michigan history,
forest management and social considerations for wildlife management.
A Year in the Life of a Michigan Black
Bear. Sixth-, seventh- and eighth-grade students have the chance to
learn all about black bears in Michigan – from their life history to
how the DNR manages populations – in this curriculum. Students also
get to “follow” black bear movements in Michigan by looking at
actual location data from collared bears.
Wondrous Wetlands and Waterfowl. Middle
schoolers can get an introduction to wetland habitats with this
program. These lessons have activities about wetlands and the ducks,
geese and swans that live in Michigan, and give students an
opportunity to look at how different land uses affect wildlife
habitats, including wetlands.
Go Wild for Michigan’s Wildlife. This
curriculum introduces elementary-age students to a variety of
species found throughout Michigan and their supporting habitats.
Materials include sets of Critter Cards for each student to keep;
however, those sets are limited and are issued on a first-come,
first-served basis to Michigan educators who register. All
registered educators will receive an electronic copy of the Critter
Cards to use.
information, including how to register, visit
16AUG18-On the DNR's Wildtalk
podcast, wildlife staff chew the
fat and shoot the scat about all things habitat, feathers and fur.
With insights, interviews and listener questions answered on the air,
you'll come away with a better picture of what's happening in the
world of Michigan wildlife.
In episode #3, find
out more about the DNR's Hunting Access Program, which helps people
find land to hunt throughout the state. Later in the show, learn what
you should do if you discover a raccoon in your attic!
Questions about something you heard on the
podcast? Contact the
DNR Wildlife Division
at 517-284-WILD (9453).
By CORY KOVACS and CARL CHRISTIANSEN -
Michigan Department of Natural
16AUG18-On a rainy
August morning, three men dressed in dark-shaded green chest waders
and rain jackets slowly make their way upstream, through the chilly
waters of the Rock River in Alger County.
Two of the men carry
long white poles with rectangular boxed ends in one rubber-gloved hand
and a fishing net at the end of a wooden pole in the other.
From each of the two
men, a thick yellow electrical cord runs downstream to a blue or red
equipment box in a small aluminum boat, which is being pulled up the
river by the third man.
As the men move the
ends of the white poles under the stream banks, and the wet alder
trees overhanging the water, large and small brook trout begin to
appear, floating sideways or upside down in the creek.
Quickly, the fish are
netted and moved to a plastic bin filled with water that’s sitting in
the bottom of the boat. The men pull the boat to the muddy shore and
they begin measuring the fish and collecting information on each of
They work quickly
because it won’t be long before the fish have revived and are once
again darting under the banks of the stream, looking for places to
process is called electrofishing, and it’s been around for quite a
while. The men and women who perform this task for the state are
fisheries biologists and technicians with the Michigan Department of
Within the DNR, the
Fisheries Division is responsible for managing fish populations within
the state’s streams, protecting and preserving these valuable
resources for the public and posterity.
Because every stream
is unique, each one requires attention to factors that may, or may
not, have an impact on the fish community.
In every case,
fisheries managers are trying to gather more data on fish populations
to help guide management recommendations.
How it works
Michigan got its start at the Hunt Creek Research Station in
Montmorency County during the summer of 1942.
electrofishing unit first used in Michigan was a 1-horsepower gasoline
motor that powered a 500-watt generator. The electrical current was
conducted to the water through a rubber-covered, two-wire cable using
a pair of electrodes that were attached to wooden handles. The two
electrodes used the water to complete the electrical circuit to the
Today the concept is
still the same, although the equipment has come a long way since 1942.
There are three main electrofishing tools used by the DNR in Michigan.
The first is called a
backpack shocker. It is designed for small streams and is very
portable. It runs off a 12-volt battery or sometimes a small
The second type is
called a stream shocker. These units are designed for larger streams
that a backpack shocker cannot cover adequately, and they are what the
fisheries team was using on the Rock River that rainy day in August.
stream shocker is made up of a small generator and a control box that
can alter the amount of current being produced by the generator. The
electric current flows from a positive to negative charged direction.
These components are
put into a small boat or barge. There can be two or three anode
(positive) electrodes on the boat (the red and blue boxes), allowing
several people to “shock” the stream at the same time. These
electrodes are often connected with cord reels, allowing the
technicians to be able to move away from the boat to get to different
areas of the stream. The boat acts as the other electrode (negative)
or “cathode,” completing the electrical circuit in the water.
The final, and
largest, electrofishing tool is the boom shocker. These tools are used
on large rivers and lakes. They usually consist of a 16- to 20-foot,
flat-bottomed boat equipped with large booms, a generator and a
control box. The booms act as the anode (positive) electrode, and the
boat serves as the cathode (negative) electrode.
All three types of
electrofishing gear options serve the same purpose. They produce an
electric current in the water which temporarily stuns the fish, firing
their muscles involuntarily, allowing technicians to collect the fish
and collect biological samples.
The fish are netted
and placed in temporary holding tanks to be sampled and then released
back into the water of the stream or lake being surveyed.
Uses of the
fisheries managers have used electrofishing gear to grow their
knowledge about the fish community that lives in each stream or lake.
The many uses for
electrofishing gear, illustrating why it is a critical tool for
fisheries managers, include:
Aiding in estimating the number and type of
species living within fish communities.
Collecting wild fish for egg gathering. The
eggs are taken to fish hatcheries and hatched. The fish produced
from these eggs are used for stocking streams and lakes.
Providing data to help judge the
effectiveness of fisheries management actions.
Monitoring important fish species or
non-native, invasive species that can harm fish populations, water
quality, recreation or economic concerns.
In the early 2000s,
the DNR’s Fisheries Division developed a standard process for stream
sampling to compare fish populations between different streams with
similar habitat types. Electrofishing gear is used to collect
information from the populations in these streams.
information fisheries biologists, technicians and managers are looking
for includes length, fish species type and age. They often will take
scale or spine samples to help determine age.
Under a rotation plan
– three years of stream sampling, three years without – the Rock River
in Alger County, is sampled using the established standard method. The
stream contains a wild population of brook trout.
By sampling within a
1,000-foot length of stream, a population estimate for brook trout is
calculated from each sampling effort. From the information gathered,
trends in brook trout abundance, mortality and growth can be
identified, which are key components to fisheries management.
Every year during
spring runoff, rivers rise, swollen with snowmelt. In Newaygo County,
the DNR’s Fisheries Division organizes a fleet of electrofishing boats
to head to the Muskegon River, below Croton Dam, in search of walleye.
The Muskegon River
serves as one of two locations in Michigan where wild walleye brood
stock (eggs used to grow fish populations) is collected. The second is
Little Bay de Noc in Delta County.
Because of the high
and fast water conditions of the Muskegon River during the spring
spawning run, electrofishing boats are very effective at successfully
capturing spawning walleye. This provides the number of eggs needed to
meet targets for production at the Wolf Lake State Fish Hatchery in
Van Buren County.
one month later, on the east side of Michigan, electrofishing boats
search the Detroit River for muskellunge during their spawning period.
Great Lakes, or “spotted,” muskellunge have been the primary focus for
DNR Fisheries Division production since 2010.
inland brood-stock lakes become well-established with an acceptable
population level of Great Lakes muskellunge, the DNR will rely
entirely on the Detroit River to collect eggs for its statewide
muskellunge stocking program.
In the early stage of
this muskellunge program, efforts with other gear types were
unsuccessful on this massive waterbody. Today the sole method for
collection is with electrofishing boats.
Many times, anglers
visiting a stream wonder, “Why does this stream have a different fish
size limit than another stream just down the road?”
To answer this
question, fisheries managers typically reply with some data,
biological reasoning and information that may seem like it just came
out of nowhere.
information was most likely learned from data collected during
electrofishing, which supported a need for a fish size restriction on
one stream and not another.
Similarly, when a dam
is removed after being in place for years, fisheries managers will
want to know what effects the removal has had on the stream.
Electrofishing gear most likely would be used to help evaluate the
changes in the fish communities, upstream and downstream of the dam
Another instance to
consider is invasive fish species and how the DNR and other entities
identifies their occurrence or status. Invasive species awareness has
been of the utmost importance in recent years and on the radar of
every fisheries manager across the nation.
When someone reports
seeing an invasive species to the DNR, field staffers often conduct
electrofishing surveys to determine the presence or absence, and
location, of the invasive species.
Responses to invasive
species reports are relatively fast using electrofishing gear, since
all the components of the tools typically are found within one unit,
not requiring any significant amount of setup time.
Over the past
three-quarters of a century, electrofishing has found its place in
fisheries management and research. The original uses of this sampling
equipment are still being applied today.
With the development,
refinement and continued use of this technology, questions once
thought to be impossible to answer are now able to be answered
efficiently and confidently.
Electrofishing is a
tool likely to remain important in helping to protect and preserve
Michigan’s thriving stream and lake fish communities well into the
information on fishing in Michigan at
To report potential invasive species, visit
contact the appropriate person for your area on the DNR’s
invasive species website
with photos attached.
previous Showcasing the DNR stories in our archive at
To subscribe to upcoming Showcasing articles sign-up for free email
"Donna The Buffalo" to Headline August 24th - 26th at the Porcupine
Mountains Music Festival
days packed full of music and fun are scheduled for the 14th annual
Porcupine Mountains Music Festival in Ontonagon County.
The festival will be
staged Aug. 24 – 26 at the winter recreation area (ski hill) at Porcupine
Mountains Wilderness State Park, located just west of Silver City.
The music festival is
presented by the Friends of The Porkies, a 501(c) 3 non-profit
organization, which represents all users of the Porcupine Mountains
Wilderness State Park.
This activity is
supported by the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the
National Endowment for the Arts. The festival made state history in 2005
by becoming the first music festival to be held in a Michigan state park.
Staffed by a handful of
year-round volunteers and over 120 volunteers throughout the three-day
event, the festival places the focus on a wide variety of musical styles
such as bluegrass, folk, rock, blues, zydeco, country and more.
The event will be held
rain or shine.
Headlining the festival
this year are:
Friday, Aug. 24 – The Fred Eaglesmith Show,
starring Tif Ginn: Eaglesmith is a veteran of the music industry and, at
the same time, is about as far away from actually participating in
today’s music industry as one could be. Never operating within anyone’s
boundaries, he continues to set the standard for independent artists
everywhere. Tif Ginn is a gutsy, amazing singer and a transcendent
songwriter who has spent most of her life touring and playing music. Her
impressive, sultry vocals and glorious harmonies with Fred, along with
her multiple instrument additions to the show will have you in awe. This
girl has it all, including Fred.
Saturday, Aug. 25 – Donna the Buffalo: Known as
one of the most dynamic and determined bands continuously touring
America since 1989, Donna the Buffalo drew its original inspiration from
a cherished part of the American heritage: the old-time music festivals
of the south that drew entire towns and counties together. This
presentation is supported by the Arts Midwest Touring Fund, a program of
Arts Midwest that is funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, with
additional contributions from The Michigan Council for The Arts Cultural
Affairs, and the Crane Group.
Sunday, Aug. 26 – The Slambovian Circus of
Dreams: Known for their electrifying live performances, the band has
toured nationally and abroad, playing a moody, but upbeat, alt-roots
rock. The band’s music is equal parts Washington Irving and Woodstock,
tapping a broad palette of styles ranging from dusty Americana ballads
to huge Pink Floydesque cinematic anthems.
Special guests throughout
the three-day event include The Roosevelts, Old Salt Union and The
Barefoot, along with the Ragbirds, Joshua Davis Trio, The Talbott
Brothers, Wild Rivers, the Lucky Dutch, Shari Kane and Dave Steele, Kind
Country and more.
Offering a more laid-back
feel is the festival’s acoustic Busking Barn, where amateurs and
professionals take the stage. Daily jam sessions are held. New this year
is the Chalet Stage indoors, hosting performances during intermissions on
the outdoor stage. The festival also offers children’s activities and
Tickets are $90 for a
three-day pass, $35 for a single-day pass. Seniors over 60 and teens ages
13-17 receive $5 off regular prices. Tickets for children ages 7-12 are
$10 for either a three-day pass or a single day pass. Children 6 and under
receive free admission when accompanied by a parent or guardian.
Wilderness State Park is a popular tourist attraction, with a breathtaking
60,000 acres of natural beauty located in Ontonagon and Gogebic counties
in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.
Ontonagon County is
Michigan’s largest by acreage, and is one of the least-densely populated
counties in the state; laid back and picturesque, with wondrous natural
surroundings. There are more than 40 miles of Lake Superior shoreline,
named one of the cleanest beaches in America. The thousands of acres of
state and federal land, a community lighthouse, an area rich in mining
history and Native American history are all a part of the legacy of the
Ontonagon County also
boasts Michigan's and the Midwest's largest span of virgin hardwood
maple/hemlock forest located within the boundaries of Porcupine Mountains
Wilderness State Park.
information regarding the 14th Annual Porcupine Mountains Music Festival,
or call 1-906-231-1589.
For campers with
questions on reservations at any of Michigan’s state parks, contact the
DNR’s parks call center at 1-800-447-2757 or 1-800-44PARKS.
Great Outdoors subscribers are always the first to know about reservation
opportunities, state park events and other outdoor happenings.
information, visit the DNR’s webpage at:
Natural Resources Commission approves deer
regulations related to chronic wasting disease
16AUG18-At the August 9th meeting of the Michigan Natural Resources
Commission in Lansing, the commission approved a series of deer
hunting regulations aimed at slowing the spread of chronic wasting
disease. The action came after months of commission members and
Department of Natural Resources staff hearing from hunters, residents
and others interested in the long-term health of the state’s deer
population, and a thorough review of the best available science on
chronic wasting disease.
“We hope that by setting these specific CWD regulations we can
limit the movement of this disease in Michigan,” said Vicki Pontz, NRC
chairperson. “We appreciate all the comments we have received from
across the state. Michigan hunters are very passionate about deer and
deer hunting, and I look forward to working with them as we continue
to confront this threat to wildlife and our valued hunting tradition.”
CWD is a fatal
neurological (brain and nervous system) disease found in cervids –
deer, elk and moose. The disease attacks the brains of infected
animals and produces small lesions that result in death. There is no
cure; once an animal is infected, it will die.
The disease first was discovered in Michigan in a free-ranging deer in
May 2015. To date, more than 31,000 deer in Michigan have been tested for
chronic wasting disease, and CWD has been confirmed in 60 free-ranging
deer in six Michigan counties: Clinton, Ingham, Ionia, Jackson, Kent and
The approved deer hunting regulations, which will be in effect for the
2018 deer seasons unless noted otherwise, include:
Reduced the 4-point on-a-side antler
requirement on the restricted tag of the combination license in the
16-county CWD Management Zone. Under the new regulation, a hunter in the
CWD Management Zone can use the restricted tag of the combination
license to harvest a buck with antlers as long as it has at least one
Created a discounted antlerless license
opportunity in the CWD Management Zone on private land; if purchased,
the license will expire Nov. 4, 2018.
immediately, a statewide ban on the use of all natural cervid
urine-based lures and attractants, except for lures that are approved by
the Archery Trade Association.
An immediate ban
on baiting and feeding in the 16-county area identified as the CWD
Management Zone. This area includes Calhoun, Clinton, Eaton, Gratiot,
Hillsdale, Ingham, Ionia, Isabella, Jackson, Kent, Mecosta, Montcalm,
Muskegon, Newaygo, Ottawa and Shiawassee counties.
A ban on baiting
and feeding in the Lower Peninsula, effective Jan. 31, 2019, with an
exception to this ban for hunters with disabilities who meet specific
requirements. The start date on this regulation is intended to allow
bait producers and retailers time to adjust to the new rule.
immediately in the CWD Management Zone and four-county bovine
tuberculosis area (in Alcona, Alpena, Montmorency and Oscoda counties),
hunters with disabilities who meet specific requirements can now use 2
gallons of single-bite bait, such as shelled corn, during the Liberty
and Independence hunts.
Allowance of all
legal firearms to be used in muzzleloader season in the CWD Management
A purchase limit
of 10 private-land antlerless licenses per hunter in the CWD Management
deer carcass movement in the five-county CWD Core Area (Ionia, Kent,
Mecosta, Montcalm and Newaygo counties) and the CWD Management Zone.
options on deer licenses/combo licenses during firearms seasons in the
five-county CWD Core Area.
early and late antlerless seasons in select counties.
regulations regarding wildlife rehabilitators.
In addition, the
commission asked the DNR to move forward with:
mandatory antler point restriction regulation in a five-county CWD Core
Area, including Ionia, Kent, Mecosta, Montcalm and Newaygo counties. The
restriction would begin in 2019, provided a survey of hunters shows
support for the requirement and specific department guidelines are met.
This is intended as a tool to evaluate the effects of antler point
restrictions on the spread and prevalence of CWD, along with deer
hunter-submitted proposal for mandatory antler point restrictions in
Huron, Tuscola, Sanilac, St. Clair and Lapeer counties. If hunter
surveys support this regulation and specific department guidelines are
met, it would be implemented in 2019.
These regulations come
after much collaborative work to better understand the scope and pathways
of CWD and best management actions. In October 2017, Michigan hosted a CWD
symposium that brought together roughly 200 wildlife scientists and other
experts from across the country.
Recommendations and public outreach
Shortly after the
symposium, the DNR and the Natural Resources Commission announced the
creation of a nine-member Chronic Wasting Disease Working Group. This
group was charged with developing recommendations on additional steps and
actions to substantially mitigate CWD in Michigan, and in January
presented initial recommendations centered around messaging, partnership
funding, regional management, and the importance of continuing a solid
Throughout April and May of this year, the DNR hosted a series of
public engagement meetings in Bay City, Cadillac, Detroit, DeWitt,
Gaylord, Houghton, Iron Mountain, Kalamazoo, Marquette, Newberry and
Rockford. These meetings provided many opportunities for the DNR to share
the latest information and recommendations about CWD, while encouraging
the public to offer their best ideas on how to slow the disease.
During this outreach period, more than 650 peopled attend public
engagement meetings, and the DNR received comments and suggestions via 361
hard-copy surveys and 135 online surveys.
More information on regulations
Details on all regulations will be added next week to the online
hunting digests on the DNR website, and DNR staff will be available at
deer-check stations during the hunting seasons, too.
about these regulations also will be posted next week to the michigan.gov/cwd website.
For additional questions, contact the
DNR Wildlife Division
In case you missed it, the DNR's Conservation Officer Recruit
School #9 got under way last month in Lansing. Twenty-two men and
eight women have begun the 23-week academy, where they'll face a
challenging series of physical, academic and natural resources
training activities in their quest to join the ranks of Michigan's
Follow along by signing up for weekly
installments of the department's academy blog.
Candidates who successfully complete the academy then will be paired
with veteran DNR conservation officers for an additional 18 weeks of
field training. Learn more at
million acres of state forestland require a lot of careful planning to
keep them healthy and thriving. That’s why the DNR finalizes plans for
each forest management unit two years in advance of when any
management activities – prescribed burns, timber harvests or tree
thinning, for example – actually will take place.
forest management recommendations for 2020 are being presented at open
houses within those forest management units, giving people the
opportunity to speak with foresters, wildlife biologists and other
Upcoming open houses
Roscommon Forest Management Unit –
Sept. 12 in Roscommon
About a month
after each forest management unit’s open house, a public compartment
review meeting also will take place. That’s where the foresters will
present their final decisions on management activities for that unit.
Compartment review meetings
coming up include:
Pigeon River Forest Management Unit
– Aug. 15 in Vanderbilt
Escanaba Forest Management Unit
Sept. 5 in Escanaba
Cadillac Forest Management Unit
Sept. 11 in Cadillac
information – including a link to the interactive forest map showing
details of forest management activities, and the forest open house and
compartment review schedules – visit the
public input section
of the DNR’s
numerous state parks in both southeast and southwest Michigan host
volunteer stewardship workdays.
In August, volunteers
will help with prairie restoration (removing invasive plants such as
spotted knapweed) and cutting invasive, non-native shrubs. These
workdays are a great way to spend time in Michigan's great outdoors,
while helping restore the state's natural ecosystems.
information about volunteer stewardship workdays, including a calendar
of opportunities, is available at
please register by completing and submitting the
stewardship volunteer registration form.
hunting season just around the corner, it's a great time to plan a
fall hunting trip.
Michigan has millions
of acres of public hunting land, with excellent young forests that
have made northern Michigan a destination for many.
GEMS and Mi-HUNT are
two DNR-developed programs to help build a public-land hunting
Nineteen GEMS (Grouse
Enhanced Management Sites) in the northern Lower Peninsula and Upper
Peninsula will be available to explore this fall. GEMS are large
blocks of land managed for young forests, with winding hunter walking
trails that provide added comfort to those unfamiliar with an area or
those with mobility challenges.
michigan.gov/gems for an interactive map,
information about individual GEMS, custom maps and information about
local businesses showing support by offering discounts.
another option for hunters who already know the general area they’d
like to hunt but want specific stand and road information. Visit
michigan.gov/mihunt to watch the
tutorials that can help you use the mapping system to its full
grouse season runs Sept. 15 to Nov. 14 and Dec. 1 to Jan. 1. Woodcock,
a migratory bird, have an abbreviated season, Sept. 22 to Nov. 5. To
hunt grouse and woodcock in Michigan, hunters only need a base
license. To target woodcock, a free woodcock stamp is required.
Licenses and stamps may be
purchased online at E-License or at one
of the many
license agents across the state.
waterfowl hunt applications are available now through Tuesday, August
To apply for reserved hunts on certain
managed waterfowl areas, visit a license agent or
michigan.gov/waterfowl. Applications are
$5, and hunters may only apply once.
Drawing results will
be posted September 17th.
Reserved hunts will
be held both mornings and afternoons of the opening weekend (October
13th and 14th) of waterfowl hunting season at Fish Point State
Wildlife Area, Harsens Island and Shiawassee River State Game Area.
The maximum party
size is four hunters. For morning hunts and the second-day hunts,
successful applicants must have appropriate licenses and stamps and be
accompanied by one to three other appropriately licensed hunters.
Youth have a special opportunity because the opening-day afternoon
hunts are for those 16 and younger. Successful applicants for the
opening-day afternoon hunts can have up to two adults who are 18 years
of age or older with appropriate licenses.
information about waterfowl hunting, visit
14AUG18-Michigan residents and out-of-state visitors can ride
DNR-designated routes and trails Saturday, Aug. 18, and Sunday, Aug.
19, without an ORV license or trail permit during the second
Free ORV Weekend
of the year.
Free ORV Weekend includes nearly 3,700 miles of off-road trails and
the state’s five scramble areas – St. Helen’s Motorsport Area, Black
Lake Scramble Area, Silver Lake State Park, Bull Gap and The Mounds.
All other ORV rules and laws still apply, and the Recreation Passport
is required where applicable.
Throughout the year, fees generated through ORV licenses and trail
permits ($36.25 for both) are reinvested back into the ORV system to
help fund trail expansion, maintenance and infrastructure
improvements. The funds also support safety and law enforcement and
help address damage created by illegal ORV use
14AUG18-The DNR currently is accepting pre-proposals for the next
round of Aquatic Habitat Grant Program funding. This program is
focused on supporting projects that either protect intact aquatic
habitat (the places where aquatic species live) or rehabilitate
aquatic habitat that has become degraded.
The program this year
is offering $1.25 million. Selected projects will emphasize:
Rehabilitation of degraded
of self-sustaining aquatic communities that provide for continuing
outdoor recreation opportunities and natural resource-based
Development of strong
relationships, partnerships and new expertise with respect to
aquatic habitat protection and recovery.
Projects can address issues on
rivers, inland lakes or the Great Lakes.
is available to local, state, federal and tribal governments and
nonprofit groups for single- and multiple-year projects and will be
awarded through an open, competitive process.
amounts will be set at $25,000 with the maximum amount being the
amount of funds available for the grant cycle. Smaller projects
within the same region addressing similar issues and system
processes can be bundled into a single grant proposal package in
order to reach minimum grant amount requirements, if necessary.
All applicants must
complete and submit a three-page pre-proposal for review by the
DNR’s Fisheries Division. Pre-proposals must be submitted by email
to Chip Kosloski at
no later than Tuesday, Aug. 28. Applicants will be notified by
Saturday, Sept. 29, and, if successful, will be invited to submit a
full application. An invitation to submit a full application does
not guarantee project funding.
This program is funded by
revenues from fishing and hunting license fees. The detailed program
handbook (including timeline) and pre-proposal guidelines and forms
are available at
For more information, contact
at 517-284-6236 or
who need help with their forests should soon find that Michigan’s
Registered Forester program has an up-to-date online database and a
new complaint review process.
Those changes are part of a restructuring process as oversight of the
registered forester program moves to the DNR from the Department of
Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.
“The new program is the ideal source for landowners to find highly
qualified foresters to help them manage their forestland,” said Deb
Begalle, chief of the DNR’s Forest Resources Division. Begalle will be
responsible for appointing a seven-member board to oversee the
The voluntary program has undergone a four-year restructuring process
that includes required continuing education for registered foresters,
appointment of the board and a moderate fee increase to help pay for
maintaining and promoting the program.
A bill introduced in 2014 in the state Legislature would have
abolished the registered forester program, but Gov. Rick Snyder vetoed
it after protest from foresters across the state. Snyder signed a law
in April of this year to move oversight of the revamped program to the
“This is a voluntary
program that encourages higher standards for Michigan’s foresters,”
Begalle said. Nearly two-thirds of Michigan’s 20 million acres of
forest are privately owned; the state manages an estimated 4 million
acres of public forest.
Learn more about the Registered Forester program at
under Private Landowners. Questions on the current or future program?
Email Brenda Haskill at firstname.lastname@example.org.
14AUG18-The way people enjoy and manage natural resources is always
evolving, but maybe at no faster a pace than in recent years, thanks
to dynamic GIS technology.
The DNR’s efforts in this arena recently
were honored at the annual
Esri User Conference, when the department
earned a Special Achievement in GIS Award for its innovative
application of mapping, data analytics and thought leadership.
The SAG Awards recognize organizations using GIS to
solve some of the world's toughest challenges. Through the “science of
where” – the technology of GIS combined with the science of geography
– this year’s honorees demonstrated groundbreaking, transformative
possibilities of GIS software.
“Within the past 20 years, the DNR has implemented an enterprise GIS
system to support the growing needs and challenges of caring for
Michigan’s natural resources and connecting the public to those
resources,” said Dave Forstat, DNR GIS manager and chief data steward.
“As web GIS has become more prevalent, we’ve leveraged the benefits of
increased communication and data accuracy to provide customers with
the best possible data on trails, water, minerals, trees, wildlife,
fish and other areas.”
This includes online tools – like the
Open Data Portal, interactive maps, story
maps and customized apps – aimed at connecting outdoor enthusiasts and
natural resources professionals with the information they need.
“Through these tools, visitors can explore interactive maps and get
information in a user-friendly, visually pleasing format,” said Brian
Maki, GIS Support Unit supervisor, who accepted the award at the
conference. “GIS has made it easier for people to enjoy outdoor
recreation experiences and learn about the DNR and how we manage the
state’s natural resources on their behalf.”
These applications and tools also have a positive economic influence
on the state. GIS analysis assisted decision-makers at Arauco – a
global producer of wood products – in choosing to bring a
state-of-the-art chipboard plant to Grayling, Michigan. The $400
million plant is under construction and set to begin production in
September, creating up to 210 new jobs.
Learn more by visiting
michigan.gov/dnrmaps or contacting
Dave Forstat at 517-420-8426.
UPSA Honors Richardson
as ‘Outstanding Conservationist’
Peninsula Sportsmen’s Alliance has honored J.R. Richardson of
Ontonagon as the group’s 2018 “Outstanding Conservationist.”
The award was presented today at a quarterly UPSA meeting at the
William Anderson Sportsman’s Club in Hermansville in Menominee County.
Richardson, a life-long resident of the U.P., is well-known for his
service on the Michigan Natural Resources Commission, which began in
2007, when he was initially appointed to the post by Gov. Jennifer
He was later reappointed to two additional terms by Gov. Rick Snyder.
Richardson was appointed chairman of the commission in 2013. He
currently is the sole U.P. representative on the commission, with his
current term set to expire in December.
Richardson has worked to improve fishing opportunities for anglers,
including helping to increase the daily bag limit for brook trout over
roughly 40 streams across the U.P. and backing efforts to improve
walleye rearing, stocking and distribution, especially within inland
This past spring, he worked with trappers and the DNR to extend the
beaver trapping season, given late winter, heavy snowfall.
“J.R. Richardson is a
fantastic recipient for our Outstanding Conservationist award,” said
Tony Demboski, UPSA president. “He always looks at all sides of a
problem and any recommendations that are presented. He is a tremendous
supporter of the natural resources across the entire state of
said Richardson has provided extensive work and leadership to the U.P.
Habitat Workgroup improving deer wintering habitat, formed the U.P.
Chronic Wasting Disease Task Force to help generate policies best
suited to the region and he has been very active with youth groups in
the western Upper Peninsula.
Richardson led a 31-year career in the paper industry which ended in
December 2007. He began as a union coal handler, paper machine laborer
and recovery boiler operator in 1976 with Champion International
Throughout his career, Richardson worked as a process engineer,
engineering supervisor, production supervisor and quality and
Richardson ended his paper industry career as an operations and
technical manager for Smurfit-Stone Container Corporation.
Since December 2007, he has worked for the New York-based TRAXYS
Corporation, which creates renewable energy alternatives for producing
power in the U.P.
A graduate of Michigan Technological University in Houghton,
Richardson holds a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering and has
completed course work toward a business engineering administration
He has received numerous awards and accolades and is a member of many
sportsmen’s groups. His community involvement includes service, from
1996 to 2004, on the Ontonagon Village Council and Economic
Development Corp., and serving as a member of the volunteer fire
department, the Marina Commission, and hazardous materials certified
is the second year the alliance has given the “Outstanding
Conservationist” award. The 2017 inaugural recipient was Alan
Ettenhofer of Escanaba, co-founder of U.P. Whitetails.
The Upper Peninsula Sportsmen's Alliance was formed in 1982 to unite
sportsmen’s groups in the region for a common cause. Today, the group
is composed of 57 clubs and businesses, representing 49,000 members.
The alliance’s mission is to be the voice of U.P. sportsmen and
outdoors users to promote, foster and advance the outdoor recreation
experience, encouraging conservation of natural resources and the
environment to perpetuate the direction of management and use, for the
benefit of future generations by educating UPSA’s members, youth and
the general public.
cooperates, when appropriate, with local, state and federal resource
management agencies, encourages communication with the DNR on policy
issues and respects the rights of landowners.
information, visit UPSA’s webpage at
Michigan Inland Lakes Convention this October in
26JUL18-Lake enthusiasts and professionals will come together Oct.
3-5 at the Crowne Plaza in Grand Rapids for the Michigan Inland Lakes
Convention, held every other year. Registration for this year’s
conference is now open. Discounts are available for early registration
until Friday, Sept. 14, as well as for students and presenters.
The convention focuses on “Working Together for Healthy Lakes” and is
being planned by the Michigan Inland Lakes Partnership and the
Michigan Clean Water Corps (MiCorps).
Two days of educational presentations, discussions and in-depth
workshops focused exclusively on Michigan’s inland lakes will be
offered. Dozens of Michigan nonprofit and governmental exhibitors will
showcase their projects and resources.
“We’re excited to be joined by two outstanding keynote speakers at the
2018 convention,” said convention coordinator Jo Latimore, with
Michigan State University. “One will be Michigan native Lisa Borre,
now a prominent inland lake researcher and writer from the Cary
Institute of Ecosystem Studies in New York, to share her experiences
in local to global collaboration for healthy lakes. We’ll also be
joined by Bill Creal, former Water Resources Division chief of the
Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, who is currently
Research and Innovation director for the Great Lakes Water Authority.
He will share his perspectives on effective partnerships to protect
Lake researchers, water resource professionals, local leaders,
residents and vacationers alike are invited to workshops and
presentations that will engage, educate and empower. Participants can
choose from a variety of concurrent sessions focused on specific
issues such as natural shorelines, citizen science, invasive species,
water law and natural resources management. On Friday, Oct. 5,
attendees will have the option to participate in workshops on becoming
Shoreland Stewards Ambassadors, citizen science for aquatic
macroinvertebrates, remote sensing for algae concentrations in lakes,
and a field trip to invasive species management areas on Reed’s Lake.
The convention is a cooperative effort between the many organizations
that make up the Michigan Inland Lakes Partnership, including the
Michigan Aquatic Managers Association, Michigan Chapter of the North
American Lake Management Society, Michigan Department of Environmental
Quality, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Michigan Natural
Shoreline Partnership, Michigan State University Extension, Michigan
State University Institute of Water Research and Northwestern Michigan
College. Financial support for the convention is provided by the DNR
and the Michigan Lake Stewardship Association.
The Michigan Inland Lakes Partnership promotes collaboration between
locals, professionals, researchers and agencies in order to advance
stewardship of Michigan’s inland lakes. For more information, visit
follow the Michigan Inland Lakes Partnership on Facebook and Twitter
DNR Conservation Officers Seize Record Amount of
Illegal Crayfish in Southeast Michigan
than 2,000 pounds of live, illegal red swamp crayfish recently were seized
by Department of Natural Resources conservation officers – the largest
aquatic invasive species seizure by the Michigan DNR.
Red swamp crayfish are prohibited in both Michigan and Canada. They burrow
and create shoreline erosion, creating instability. Additionally, they
compete with native crayfish, reducing the amount of food and habitat
available for amphibians, invertebrates and juvenile fish.
Conservation officers in St. Clair County were notified Friday, July 13,
by U.S. Customs and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service when a commercial
hauler transporting red swamp crayfish was denied entry into Canada and
would be returning to Michigan. The commercial hauler was stopped by
Canadian officials at the Sarnia, Canada, border crossing in an attempt to
leave the United States.
“Our officers have great working relationships with professional law
enforcement partners across the U.S. and Canada. This is a fine example of
how important those relationships are in protecting Michigan’s natural
resources,” said Chief Gary Hagler, DNR Law Enforcement Division.
Assisted by customs officials, DNR conservation officers stopped the
truck and obtained 55 bags of live crayfish. After interviewing the
driver, the officers learned the truck originated from Canada and made
stops in Maryland and Arkansas to pick up cargo prior to attempting its
return to Canada. The driver did not have appropriate records, other than
a few purchase receipts. DNR Law Enforcement Division’s Great Lakes
Enforcement Unit is conducting further investigation. It currently is
unknown if any stops or sales were made in Michigan.
The first concern regarding red swamp crayfish in Michigan was in 2013,
when conservation officers learned the illegal crayfish was being used as
bait in southwest Michigan. The first live infestations in Michigan were
detected and reported in 2017. Confirmed infestations include locations in
Native in southeast states of the U.S., red swamp crayfish are the most
widespread invasive crayfish in the world, and often are used in
classrooms as teaching tools and at food festivities such as crayfish
boils. Any possession of live red swamp crayfish in Michigan is illegal.
The DNR is working to increase awareness and reporting of the illegal
crayfish, in addition to removing infestations from confirmed locations.
Michigan conservation officers
are fully commissioned state peace officers who provide natural resources
protection, ensure recreational safety and protect citizens by providing
general law enforcement duties and lifesaving operations in the
communities they serve.
been told to be careful about internet use to avoid computer viruses
like worms or Trojan horses – but did you know that internet shopping
can introduce invasive species to Michigan, too? Going online to
purchase new plants for your pond or a new aquarium pet is a good way
to find a wider selection, but sellers outside of the state may be
unaware that certain species (like red swamp crayfish, pictured
here) are prohibited or restricted in Michigan.
If you shop
online for exotic plants, pets or live food, it's good to be aware of
the state and federal laws in place to prevent the introduction or
spread of invasive species, and you should know which species these
Check out the most recent issue of Michigan's Invasive Species
Newsletter to learn more about these
species and organisms and the trade pathway in Michigan.
Joanne Foreman at 517-284-5814.
24JUL18-Those interested in learning about
current techniques and trends in caring for forests can check out the
Michigan Forestry Best Management Practices for Soil and Water Quality.
updated from 2009, includes changes in procedures for endangered
species assessment, estimating stream channel width and culvert
diameters, and additional guidance on harvest operations. Sections
covering forest roads, chemical treatments and use of pesticides also
have been reorganized.
“These ‘best management practices’ contain legal requirements and
voluntary practices that can help prevent sediment or other sources of
pollution from going into lakes and streams during forest management
activities such as a timber harvest, whether it’s on public or private
lands,” said Deb Begalle, chief of the DNR Forest Resources Division.
The revision process was a joint effort by the DNR, the departments of
Environmental Quality and Agriculture and Rural Development, the
Michigan Association of Timbermen and the Michigan Forest Products
Council. The DNR, DEQ and the Michigan Sustainable Forestry Initiative
Implementation Committee contributed money for printing.
“We sincerely thank our partners for their help in finalizing the new
best practice manual. We could not have done it without them,” said
for more information about
forestry and best management practices or
David Price at 517-284-5891.
24JUL18-A recent cleanup effort along a stretch of the Menominee
River is expected to boost fish and environmental health in the area
as the river recovers.
River forms the boundary between the northeast corner of Wisconsin and
the southern tip of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, with headwaters
originating in both states and eventually emptying into Green Bay.
Federal Environmental Protection Agency and state specialists from
Michigan and Wisconsin helped Lower Menominee River communities clean
up the river by removing contaminants left by historic industry use,
including manufactured gas, ship-building, paper and wastewater
treatment companies. Great Lakes Restoration Initiative funds
supported the cleanup.
“Restoration of sites like these makes an incredible difference for
Great Lakes communities and natural habitat, as well as the outdoor
recreation opportunities they support,” said Office of the Great Lakes
Director Jon Allan. “Together, we’re achieving the goal of swimmable,
fishable, drinkable waters that everyone can enjoy.”
environmental effects of that historic pollution had earned the lower
3 miles of the Menominee River designation as an
“Area of Concern" under the 1987 Great
Lakes Water Quality Agreement. The residual impact of the release of
coal tar, paint sludge and arsenic from those businesses led to
serious ecological impairments for many area communities.
Thanks to cleanups
like this, positive changes are happening. Michigan originally was
tagged with 111 ecological impairments, which are defined as damage to
the environment that keeps the ecosystem from properly functioning.
This cleanup triggered the removal of Michigan’s 48th impairment from
that original list. Office of the Great Lakes staff expect the
Menominee River’s last two impairments, regarding fish and wildlife
habitat and populations, to be lifted soon.
Although restoration of this site is almost complete, there is still
much work needed to address environmental damage in Michigan. People
can get involved in AOC cleanups through
local Public Advisory Councils that work
in partnership with Office of the Great Lakes coordinators.
At this time,
advisories regarding quantities and species of fish
remain and are updated by the Michigan Department of Health and Human
Services. Properly cleaned and cooked panfish are considered best
choices for eating.
To learn more
about work to protect, restore and sustain Michigan’s waters, visit michigan.gov/OGL or
Rachel Coale, 517-290-4295 or
Stephanie Swart, 517-284-5046.
24JUL18-Ask people what they enjoy about Michigan state parks in
the hotter months, and many will talk about lazy days at the beach,
fun family reunions and time spent exploring trails and forests.
There’s another aspect of a state park trip that could make your visit
even more memorable: night sky viewing.
“If you live in a
big city or immediate suburb, it’s nearly impossible to get a good
look at the night sky. There’s just too much competing light, but if
you go into one of our state parks, the view changes dramatically,”
said Ami Van Antwerp, a DNR communications specialist.
A big draw is the annual Perseid meteor shower, peaking this year Aug.
9-13. Several state parks – not just those in the Upper Peninsula or
northern Lower Peninsula – will stay open late for “Meteors & S’mores”
programs (with complimentary s’mores around the campfire) to mark the
occasion, but every park offers great opportunities to camp under the
According to Space.com, air pollution has made Earth’s atmosphere less
transparent and more reflective, and an increase in light on the
ground has created “a bright background light resembling a perpetual
twilight” that makes it tough to see stars.
That’s where state
parks – 103 locations from Detroit to Ontonagon, offering more than
352,000 acres of public land – can really steal the show.
“When you’re in a state park at night, definitely look up!” said Van
Antwerp. “My family was at Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park
last summer around the same time as the meteor showers. Every night
felt like our own private light show, whenever we stepped outside the
No special equipment is needed to view these meteor showers. The
Perseids are among the brightest showers of the year and can easily be
seen with the naked eye.
viewing areas and times are specified at each park. Event dates are
available at michigan.gov/darksky.
Make camping reservations at
midnrreservations.com or call
1-800-44PARKS. Questions? Contact
Elissa Buck at 989-313-0000.
By TIMOTHY WEBB - Michigan
Department of Natural Resources
people in Michigan know the Department of Natural Resources plays a
critical role in keeping people, homes, forests, fields and other
resources protected when wildfires take off.
Throughout the state,
DNR staff members stand trained and ready for dispatchers to send them
off to the next fire. What most people don’t know is how that same
training prepares those firefighters for all kinds of other disasters.
The DNR Forest
Resources Division supports four incident management teams, two each
in the Upper and Lower peninsulas.
While their primary
job is coordinating response to large fires, the teams’ training under
the National Incident Management System also prepares them to assist
in just about any other catastrophe.
Many team members
attend workshops specifically geared to “all hazard” response. There,
they run through simulations of tornadoes, floods and many other
requiring only a few people, who are involved for a short length of
time, don’t really need oversight from an incident management team.
But when lots of people and multiple agencies get involved for more
than a day or two, an incident management team can step in to
coordinate the effort.
teams help bring organization to chaos,” said Jim Fisher, the DNR’s
fire section manager. “A team can expand or contract to fit the
situation at hand. The more complex the incident, the bigger the
members on a large fire or other incident in Michigan might be
responsible for requesting and checking in responders and equipment,
developing strategies to attack the problem, coordinating tasks and
communications among responding agencies, providing food, supplies and
lodging for staff, producing incident maps and weather reports,
collecting information for the media, and so on.
DNR teams are managed
by the Forest Resources Division but include members from other DNR
divisions who help with communications, finances and logistics.
In the early morning
hours of Sunday, June 17, torrential rains sent emergency responders
in Houghton County into action. The National Weather Service reported
7 inches of rain fell over nine hours.
The rainfall, coupled
with the steep topography in and around Houghton and Hancock, resulted
in dozens and dozens of roads, homes and businesses damaged or
destroyed by flash floods, landslides and cave-ins.
According to plan,
Houghton County’s emergency operations center mobilized its own
incident management team.
At the same time, the
storm-ravaged area recreational trails and boat ramps, elicited a
response from DNR’s Parks and Recreation Division.
Jeff Kakuk, western
Upper Peninsula trails specialist for the DNR, started checking local
trails later that same day. He quickly determined the task before him
was enormous, well beyond what could be handled with local staff.
officials soon decided an incident management team could help Kakuk
and others start wrapping their arms around this overwhelming
By Wednesday morning,
team members began arriving from across the state. The
Quincy-Franklin-Hancock Townships Volunteer Fire Department offered
its fire hall for use as DNR’s incident command post.
Brian Mensch, DNR fire supervisor at nearby Baraga, stepped in as
incident commander to lead the team.
“Our first job was to size up the damage to the local DNR trails and
close off the damaged portions of the trail system as quickly as
possible for public safety,” Mensch said.
During the next
several days, DNR ground crews documented 150 washouts on about 60
miles of trails.
After putting up fencing and signs to close off critical trail access
points, they started the lengthy process of repairing washouts and
regrading eroded trail surfaces. Staff also dug out plugged culverts
and delivered and spread gravel on storm-damaged trails.
Just 12 days after the rains, the DNR Forest Resources and Parks and
Recreation divisions’ staffers had reopened more than 40 miles of
trails and two boating access sites in the county, which needed only
That’s about where
the incident management team’s work ended. It had taken care of
immediate public safety concerns, assessed the storm damage and got
ground crews rolling on initial trail repairs.
members had engaged the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality
and a private engineering firm to help plan repairs of the major trail
washouts. Cost estimates had been delivered to the Federal Emergency
Management Agency for potential federal disaster funding.
“At that point, the team handed things back over to Parks and
Recreation Division staff to oversee and implement the long recovery
process, with the goal of restoring the recreation infrastructure so
important to the Copper Country economy,” Kakuk said.
Incident management team members returned to their home stations after
spending just over a week at the incident.
It will take quite some time before things are back to normal in
Houghton County, but the DNR’s incident management team members are
back to their own normal – waiting for the next dispatch to a wildfire
or whatever else nature throws in their direction.
Check out previous Showcasing the DNR stories in
our archive at
michigan.gov/dnrstories. To subscribe to
upcoming Showcasing articles sign-up for free email delivery at
Share Your Thoughts With
the DNR at August Meetings
23JUL18-The Department of
Natural Resources is committed to providing Michigan citizens the
opportunity to share input and ideas on policy decisions, programs and
other aspects of natural resource management and outdoor recreation
opportunities. One important avenue for this input is at meetings of the
public bodies that advise the DNR and, in some cases, also set policies
for natural resource management.
boards, commissions, committees and councils
will hold public meetings in August. The public is encouraged to attend.
The links below will take you to the webpage for each group, where you
will find specific meeting locations and, when finalized, meeting agendas.
Please check these pages
frequently, as meeting details and agendas may change and sometimes
meetings are canceled or rescheduled..
Accessibility Advisory Council
– Aug. 21, 10 a.m., DNR Traverse City Customer Service Center. Meeting
location is barrier-free and an interpreter will be present. (Contact:
Mike Holsinger, 517-284-5946)
Belle Isle Park Advisory Committee
– Aug. 16, 6 to 8 p.m., Flynn Pavilion, Bell Isle, Detroit (Contact:
Renee Parker, 517-284-6135)
Michigan Historical Commission – Aug. 15,
10 a.m., Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library, Ann Arbor (Contact:
Michelle Davis, 517-373-6362)
Michigan Iron Industry Museum Advisory Board
– Aug. 21, 3 p.m., Michigan Iron Industry Museum, Negaunee (Contact:
Barry James, 906-475-7857)
Michigan State Waterways Commission,
Aug. 30, 8:30 a.m. to noon, Ontonagon Village Offices (Contact: Michelle
Natural Resources Trust Fund Board
– Aug. 15, 9 a.m., Quality Inn, Escanaba (Contact: Jon Mayes,
State Historical Records Advisory Board
– Aug. 23, 10 a.m., Michigan Library and Historical Center, Lansing
(Contact: Michelle Davis, 517-373-6362)
Timber Advisory Council
– Aug. 17, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Weyerhaeuser, Escanaba (Contact: Kimberley
Michigan DNR Lauds
Senate Introduction of "Recovering America’s Wildlife" Act
Groundbreaking legislation provides
critical funding for fish and wildlife in greatest need
19JUL18-The Michigan Department of Natural
Resources strongly supports the introduction of the
Recovering America’s Wildlife Act in the
U.S. Senate. Senators James Risch, R-Idaho, and Joe Manchin, D-W.Va. –
along with their colleagues Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., and Heidi
Heitkamp, D-N.D. – yesterday introduced groundbreaking legislation
that provides a critical source of funding to conserve those fish and
wildlife in greatest need across the country.
The bill will
redirect $1.3 billion annually from energy development on federal
lands and waters to the existing Wildlife Conservation Restoration
Program to conserve fish and wildlife. This solution, recommended
initially by the energy sector, complements existing natural resource
conservation and outdoor recreation programs and will not require
taxpayers or businesses to pay more, but instead allows all Americans
to become investors in taking care of fish and wildlife.
Michigan’s Debbie Dingell, D-12th District – along with Jeff
Fortenberry, R-Neb. – introduced the
House version of the
in December 2017. It has gained strong, bipartisan support due to its
innovative approach to solving America’s wildlife crisis. The current
list of co-sponsors has grown to 75 members, including Michigan
congressmen Jack Bergman, R-1st District, and Daniel Kildee, D-5th
“The funding model that this legislation will create is better for
taxpayers, businesses and – most importantly – fish and wildlife that
are in danger,” said DNR Director Keith Creagh. “It’s similar to the
successful Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund program, which uses
funding from royalties on the sale and lease of state-owned minerals
to conserve natural resources and provide public outdoor recreation.
Since 1976, the Trust Fund has awarded more than $1.1 billion to help
every county in our state acquire land, improve outdoor recreation and
strengthen the economy of local communities."
If the Recovering
America’s Wildlife Act is fully funded, Michigan would receive an
additional estimated $31 million per year in federal funding for
at-risk fish and wildlife. This money could be used for efforts such
as restoring habitat, fighting invasive species, reintroducing native
species and monitoring emerging diseases.
“Michigan’s hunters and anglers have been the primary funders of
wildlife conservation efforts in the state until now,” said Russ
Mason, chief of the DNR Wildlife Division. “This funding will
complement the contributions of sportsmen and women to keep our fish
and wildlife thriving well into the future.”
America’s Wildlife Act will support Michigan’s
Wildlife Action Plan,
developed as a proactive and strategic approach to conserving the
state’s rare fish and wildlife, which is being implemented by partners
in government agencies, businesses and nongovernmental organizations
across the state.
are well-suited to manage fish and wildlife, and we have proven
successful with recovery efforts for species like lake sturgeon and
Kirtland’s warbler,” said Jim Dexter, chief of the DNR Fisheries
Division. “Additional funding will allow us to expand our ongoing
efforts to ensure healthy fish and wildlife populations – those that
are hunted and fished as well as those that aren’t.”
More than 300
different wildlife species in Michigan need proactive measures to be
taken to prevent them from becoming endangered.
“Currently there is little funding available until wildlife is in dire
straits, and at that point it’s harder and much more expensive to
recover the species,” said Dan Kennedy, DNR endangered species
coordinator. “This legislation will fund work to help at-risk wildlife
before they need the ‘emergency room’ measures of the Endangered
States also will be able to use a portion of the Recovering America’s
Wildlife Act funds to enhance outdoor recreation such as wildlife
viewing, nature photography and trails, as well as for wildlife
education programs in places like nature centers and schools.
interested in supporting passage of the Recovering America’s Wildlife
Act are asked to visit
OurNatureUSA.com for more information
about the legislation and to contact their U.S. senators and
DNR Needs Volunteers to Mentor Youth in Outdoor
Recreation Activities at The UP State Fair in Escanaba
Sign-up for a volunteer shift; opportunities
for groups, business sponsors
you’re looking for a volunteer opportunity to help a young person
experience outdoor recreation – helping instill in them a sense of
Michigan’s great natural resources heritage and traditions – then the
Michigan Department of Natural Resources is looking for you.
Youth mentors are needed to help staff the DNR’s Pocket Park during the
August 13th - 19th week of the Upper Peninsula State Fair. Activities
volunteers assist with include helping kids catch and release bluegills in
the U.P.-shaped pond, shoot pellet guns or bow and arrow, staff the fire
tower or greet visitors.
folks who volunteer at the Pocket Park find it to be a very rewarding
experience, with many returning to offer their help again this year,” said
Kristi Dahlstrom, one of the DNR volunteer organizers. “The park attracts
big crowds, which means we have a lot of available shifts for volunteers
The DNR Pocket Park is a 1-acre site, located off U.S. 2, within the
fairgrounds. The park caters especially to youngsters who are seeking an
outdoor adventure or to learn an outdoor skill.
The U.P. State Fair draws more than 80,000 visitors annually, many of
whom visit the Pocket Park to participate in the recreation activities,
experience nature programs, visit with conservation officers or to enjoy a
relaxing shaded spot to sit, in a natural resource setting. The Pocket
Park has a wooded landscape and a small waterfall.
“Volunteering at the Pocket Park is a positive and rewarding experience
all the way around,” said Jo Ann Alexander, one of the DNR volunteer
organizers. “Youth enjoy a fun experience, parents get to introduce their
kids to potentially new activities, with the help of others, and the
volunteers gain the satisfaction of knowing they are helping guide youth
in recreation activities that may help shape their future interests.”
Businesses and organizations, or clubs and groups may wish to sponsor
shifts during the fair by having their employees or members volunteer as a
group. Recognition of the group or business will be prominently displayed
Volunteer training for all activities is provided.
Shifts during fair week include:
11 a.m.-3:30 p.m. and 3-7:30 p.m. Tuesday
11 a.m.-4 p.m. and 3:30-8:30 p.m. Saturday
11:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Sunday (final day of the
fair – Aug. 19)
Volunteers must be at least 16 years old (unless under special
pre-approved circumstances) and pass a background check. A meal, T-shirt
and a small gift will be provided.
interested in volunteering should contact Kristi Dahlstrom at 906-226-1331
or email@example.com or
Jo Ann Alexander at 906-789-8200 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Pocket Park is open Memorial Day to Labor Day by appointment to
host family gatherings, picnics, youth organizations, school groups,
sports associations, scouting campouts, and public events that include
some introduction to fishing, shooting or outdoor recreation.
Those interested in booking an event at the Pocket Park can call
906-789-0714 or 906-786-2351 to reserve a date.
For more information on outdoor recreation in
Michigan, visit the DNR’s webpage at: www.michigan.gov/dnr.
17JUL18-Construction is set to begin this month on a project to
connect 14 miles of upstream habitat on Milligan Creek, a tributary of
the Upper Black River in Michigan’s northern Lower Peninsula. The
water is home to several species of fish, particularly those looking
for colder water.
The project aims to replace two
undersized culverts with a new 35-foot-wide plate arch. This effort is
being spearheaded by
and supported by the DNR’s Aquatic Habitat Grant Program, the U.S.
Fish and Wildlife Service, the Walters Family Foundation and the
Cheboygan County Road Commission.
DNR fisheries biologist Tim Cwalinski said this work should improve
fish passage (a fish’s ability to move up and down stream without
barriers in the way), as well as help prevent future flooding,
sediment buildup and pollution – all good news for anglers who visit
“The Black River watershed is a big draw for brook trout fishing, and
of course Milligan Creek enters the Black River in the sturgeon
spawning grounds,” Cwalinski said. “Milligan Creek is fished by
anglers, but overall this watershed is a key trout fishing location in
Aquatic Habitat Grant Program-supported
projects in Antrim, Barry, Dickinson, Ionia and several others
counties have helped to restore water flow and connectivity and fish
A temporary bridge has been installed at Waveland Road to divert
traffic during the Milligan Creek project construction, expected to
finish in August. These reconnected stream miles will support a
healthy river corridor, which promotes fishing, birding, hiking,
kayaking and scenic views.
For more information, contact
989-732-3541, ext. 5072 or
(Huron Pines), 989-448-2293, ext. 10.
17JUL18-Hot, dry conditions across much of the state are leaving
many trees drought-stressed and in need of water, a situation the DNR
says can lead to challenges for trees now and in the future.
might not kill trees outright, but it weakens them and makes them more
susceptible to other problems such as winter injury or secondary
disease and insect problems,” said Kevin Sayers, manager of the DNR’s
Urban and Community Forestry program.
In most cases, it’s
easy to tell if your trees have drought stress. Symptoms include:
trees (those that shed their leaves every year), leaves may curl or
droop, turn brown at the margins (scorching), fall prematurely or
exhibit early autumn color.
needles may turn yellow to red and eventually brown.
drop prematurely or become brown and stay attached. Twigs or
branches may die back.
Sayers said that when watering trees, it’s best to:
planted trees and high-value trees a priority.
long, slow soakings to saturate the soil to at least 10 to 12 inches
planted trees weekly and established trees every two to three
the tree’s dripline (from the trunk to the edge of the tree canopy).
by applying 3 to 4 inches of organic mulch under the tree canopy,
but not touching the trunk.
Not water in
the middle of the day or use mist sprinklers; they lose water
through evaporation. Watering frequently and lightly doesn’t benefit
trees much, either.
fertilizer. It can injure tree roots when conditions are dry.
To learn more about taking care of trees,
michigan.gov/ucf or contact Kevin Sayers
17JUL18-A new, interactive map available on the DNR website
provides information on access to state-owned lands, while welcoming
the public’s involvement in the management of state forest roads.
The map allows users to view state
forest road locations, see which roads are open or closed to ORV use,
and submit comments about specific roads.
It’s easy to navigate on the map to an area of interest, click
to view a road segment, and then provide your comment on that segment.
The current map accepts comments for the northern Lower Peninsula.
Beginning Jan. 1, 2019, comments will be accepted for the Upper
Peninsula and southern Lower Peninsula, too.
This new forest road inventory map is part of the DNR’s implementation
of Public Act 288 of 2016, and it ensures continued public access and
involvement in the forest road inventory process. PA 288 encourages
more people to enjoy Michigan’s public lands by enhancing ORV
opportunities in the northern Lower Peninsula and southern Lower
PA 288 also requires that state forest roads in the Upper Peninsula
be inventoried and legally designated as open or closed to ORV use.
The inventory and designation process is finished for the northern
Lower Peninsula, but is still under way in the U.P. and southern Lower
Peninsula. PA 288 requires a full, completed inventory by year’s end.
“This tool ensures easy access to important information for accessing
and using public lands. It also facilitates involvement by interested
members of the public in the forest road inventory process,” said Bill
O’Neill, DNR natural resources deputy director.
Comments submitted via the forest road inventory map by Aug. 31 of
each year will be reviewed to determine what, if any, action is
needed. Proposed changes to state forest road status for ORV or
conventional vehicle use will be available for public review and
comment in the fall. After review, the DNR director will make a
decision at a Natural Resources Commission meeting. New maps showing
state forest roads and whether they’re open to ORV use will be
published by April 1 each year.
The interactive map is available at
michigan.gov/forestroads. Printable maps
(updated annually) also are available at this website.
Learn more about designated trails in
Michigan and sign up for email updates at
michigan.gov/dnrtrails. For more on the
forest inventory map, contact
Kerry Wieber at 517-643-1256.
spend a few hours or a whole day fishing this summer? Michigan’s
waters offer plenty of opportunities to catch a variety of fish, and
summer is an ideal time to try. Charter fishing businesses throughout
the state offer a great way to explore Michigan’s world-class
Licensed charter captains provide the boats and all the equipment,
plus the knowledge needed for a fun half-day or day on the water.
Charter businesses in Michigan help children and adults have memorable
fishing experiences – whether it’s reeling in a fish for the first
time or trying your hand at catching a new species.
“Last year 72,000 anglers in Michigan participated in more than 18,000
charter fishing trips on the Great Lakes and other navigable waters,”
said Donna Wesander, a DNR fisheries technician who tracks charter
fishing data. “These anglers caught nearly 300,000 fish that included
a variety of salmon and trout, walleye, yellow perch, smallmouth bass
When hiring a
professional charter, customers need only to provide personal supplies
and fishing licenses. Those licenses can be purchased online (mdnr-elicense.com)
or through a
DNR customer service center or
Find a fishing charter for a specific location by searching online for
charter operators and regional charter fishing organizations,
contacting the local chamber of commerce or city tourism office, or
visiting the Michigan Charter Boat Association website at
Donna Wesander, 231-547-2914, ext. 223 or
Elyse Walter, 517-284-5839.
17JUL18-As part of an effort to help people connect with the
outdoors more by honing their hunting, fishing and other skills –
known as the Outdoor Skills Academy – the DNR will run a series of
bear hunting clinics over the next few weeks.
clinics, at the
Carl T. Johnson Hunting and Fishing Center
Aug. 5 and
Aug. 11, offer an opportunity to learn
the ins and outs of bear hunting with experienced hunters and DNR
educators. The $30 class, which includes lunch and door prizes
(donated by the Michigan Bear Hunters Association), will cover
habitat, gear, stand placement, baiting, rules and regulations,
carcass care and hide care.
previous years, more than 150 students from around the state – many of
them new to hunting for bears – have attended this series of bear
Former student Eric Lardi called the class “an excellent introduction
to hunting for my grandkids,” and said he used what he learned at the
clinic during a later bear hunt in Canada, when he took a bear
weighing over 300 pounds.
“The guides in Canada reinforced everything said,” he added. “The
conservation officer’s experience was invaluable to us, as to bear
behavior and what to expect.”
The Outdoor Skills
Academy offers in-depth, expert instruction, gear and hands-on
learning for a range of outdoor activities at locations around the
state. Other upcoming classes will cover photographing birds, archery,
hiking, downhill skiing and snowboarding.
“Whether you need some help getting started with a new outdoor
activity or want to brush up on your skills and learn some tips and
tricks, we can help,” said Jon Spieles, DNR field manager for
about the Outdoor Skills Academy at
information about the bear hunting clinics, contact
Ed Shaw at 231-779-1321.
DNR Crews Continue Work Amid New Flooding in
showers fell over parts of Houghton County this week, prompting new
flooding concerns and re-assessment of the local state-managed trail
The latest rains came nearly a month after a Father’s Day storm dumped
7 inches of rain on some parts of Houghton County over a nine-hour
period. Damage to state-managed facilities in the area was assessed at
just under $20 million.
Since that time, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources has been
working to restore trails, remove hazards and close areas unsafe to
Initial reports received late Thursday indicated runoff from this
week’s rainfall had undermined progress made over some parts of the
trail system, while in other areas, repairs made had withstood the
latest rainfall event.
“We are currently re-evaluating some of the sites that could have
potentially received additional damage due to the recent heavy
rainfall,” said Rob Katona, central Upper Peninsula trails specialist
with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. “We are expecting
to find some additional damage, primarily to sites that were
previously damaged during the June flood event and have not yet been
Crews are working
diligently on assessing conditions and restoration efforts.
Analysts with the Federal Emergency Management Agency are
reviewing damage assessments for the area. Gov. Rick Snyder declared
parts of the Upper Peninsula, including Houghton County, a disaster
area after the June storm and flooding.
DNR officials are awaiting the outcome of the FEMA review to see
whether federal funding will be granted to aid the area.
closures remaining in effect include the Freda Grade Route, the
Chassell to Houghton Trail and the Lake Linden Route south of Normand
The Hancock to Calumet Route is open with local reroutes. The Bill
Nicholls Trail is open south of Obenhoff Road.
“We understand how important ORV and snowmobile trails are to the
tourism economy of the Copper Country and we are working to re-open
trails as soon as it becomes safe to do so,” said Ron Yesney, DNR
Upper Peninsula trails coordinator. “However, we will undoubtedly have
some trail closures continuing throughout the winter. The damage in
many of these areas is tremendous and will take manpower, money and
time to repair.”
Complicating the trail restoration effort is the illegal dumping of
household refuse found over recent days along the Lake Linden Route.
“Dumping or littering of any sort on the trails is illegal and law
enforcement will be issuing tickets to violators,” Katona said. “Trash
and larger household items dumped along the trails is an eyesore for
trail users and, more importantly, those items have been known to
block trail infrastructure, such as culverts, causing them to not
function properly or even fail, which may potentially result in
significant new trail damage and damage to adjacent property.”
Area residents should
consult their local waste management authority to determine where they
can bring refuse and damaged household items to be disposed of
ahead, the DNR has several trails work plans in place:
Construction crews have completed some restoration and bank
stabilization work on the Lake Linden Route west of Hubbell. They
continue to work in the Ripley area, which once completed will reopen
the trail from Hancock to Dollar Bay.
working on stabilizing damaged bridge sites along the Lake Linden
Route to prevent further damage from occurring.
Within the next couple of weeks, crews will begin working on the Bill
Nicholls Route, starting between Canal Road and Old Mill Hill Road, to
install culverts and repair numerous washouts.
Despite the recent heavy rains, the DNR is tentatively planning on
performing ORV dust control treatment next week at the typical
residential sites throughout the area where the ORV routes are
currently open. Several days of dry weather are needed, with no
standing water on the trails, to complete the treatment.
Visitors to F.J. McLain State Park, north of Hancock, will need to
reach the park from the north along M-203, because of a washout south
of the park.
However, all state parks and state forest campgrounds in the area –
including Fort Wilkins Historic State Park in Keweenaw County – remain
open and operating.
Initially, the DNR was forced to close about 60 miles of state-managed
recreation trails in Houghton County. Some of the trail segments which
had less damage were repaired, graded and re-opened.
The Lily Pond, Boston Pond and Boot Jack boating access sites were
damaged significantly in June and remain closed.
some damage and washouts had occurred on the Forest Islands Trail and
Route in Menominee County, during the Father’s Day weekend flood
event. The damage resulted in closures. However, the DNR has since
repaired the damage and that entire trail system is now open.
latest status updates on trails and other DNR facilities closures
Learn more about Michigan’s trails at
DNR Provides Alternate
Potable Water Supply at Van Riper State Park
preparation for a water system improvement project, drinking water at Van
Riper State Park in Marquette County was tested and found to contain
arsenic in levels slightly above government health standards.
Park staff was notified Wednesday by the Marquette County Health
Department that the arsenic concentration at the facility was 14 parts per
billion, 4 parts above the standard. The water remains safe for
hand-washing and showering.
A truck is available to provide potable water to campers at the park. The
upgrade to the park’s water system is slated to take place in September,
which is expected to alleviate the problem.
Because of this inconvenience, campers who would like to cancel their
reservations, may do so without penalty. Currently, reservations are being
charged at the semi-modern rate: 30-amp sites are $20 per night and 50-amp
sites are $24 per night.
Rate changes are being handled by park staff. Cancellations are being
addressed by the DNR’s reservation system, CAMIS, internally. CAMIS can be
contacted at 1-800-447-2757.
Arsenic is a naturally occurring element widely distributed in the earth’s
crust. A large source of total arsenic comes from the food we eat.
However, most of the arsenic in food is in an organic form, which is much
less harmful than the inorganic arsenic found primarily in groundwater.
Some foods also contain inorganic arsenic, but the main exposure to
inorganic arsenic is normally from consuming water.
There are several potential sources of arsenic in drinking water,
including the erosion of natural deposits.
new toilet and shower building has been completed at F.J. McLain State
Park in Houghton County and is open for use. Meanwhile, construction crews
are continuing to work on a new section of campground at the park.
Lake Superior erosion at the park over the past few years forced the
closure of some campsites and other features at the park. A plan was
developed, with input from the public, on shifting some of the park's
layout and making numerous improvements to equip the park for the future.
Michigan Department of Natural Resources park staffers anticipate the new
campground sites will be available to use starting with the 2019 camping
season. Work on a new campground entrance at the park is scheduled to
begin August 1st.
In addition, F.J. McLain
State Park will be undergoing a major construction project starting in
September 2018. A variety of safety concerns will force the DNR to close
the campground during that time. Consequently, no new camping reservations
will be made for camping between September 4th to November 11th, 2018.
"We thank visitors for their patience and understanding as we undergo
these park improvement projects," said Jamie Metheringham, unit supervisor
at the park. "We anticipate these renovations will enhance the park
visitor experience and provide facilities campers can enjoy for years to
Learn the ins and outs
of photographing birds with an upcoming workshop at P.J. Hoffmaster
Gillette Sand Dune Visitor Center
in Muskegon Saturday and Sunday,
August 18th and 19th.
an award-winning nature and wildlife photographer from Michigan, this
class will cover effective use of equipment, photography techniques
and an introduction of raw processing. Saturday afternoon will be
spent in the park, practicing skills, and there will be an optional
Sunday-morning session for those wanting more one-on-one help.
Cost is $125, which includes
lunch Saturday and all workshop materials.
Register for the workshop.
This class is part of the
Department of Natural Resources
Outdoor Skills Academy.
exhibit on water is likely to create waves of interest across Michigan
now through spring 2019. The Smithsonian’s Water/Ways exhibit,
highlighting ways that water intersects with our environment, history,
economy and culture, will make stops in six communities.
The Michigan Water
Heritage Project will travel with Water/Ways, adding a Great Lakes
focus and sparking conversations about why healthy waters matter.
The exhibits opened
Saturday at the Beaver Island Historical Society, where they'll be
hosted through August 5th.
“It's really special
to be able to host the Michigan premiere of these exhibits in a
community located in the heart of the Great Lakes,” said Lori
Taylor-Blitz, director of the Beaver Island Historical Society.
Other hosting locations include:
Raven Hill Discovery Center,
East Jordan, Aug. 11-Sept. 23.
Artworks, Big Rapids, September
29th - November 11th.
Alcona Public Library,
Harrisville, Nov. 17-Dec. 30.
Niles Public Library, Niles,
Jan. 5-Feb. 17.
Shiawassee Arts Center,
Owosso, Feb. 23-April 7.
The Smithsonian exhibit is supported by the Office of the Great Lakes
in partnership with the Michigan Humanities Council, Cranbrook
Institute of Science and Michigan State University. The
Michigan Water Heritage Project
is funded by a grant from the Erb
Learn more about the exhibits by
with Office of the Great Lakes, 517-290-4295.
21JUN18-Whether you’re out in the woods or skateboarding through city
streetscapes this summer, keep your eyes open – you may spot one of
Michigan’s largest trees!
The 14th Big Tree
Hunt runs through September 3rd, 2019. Started by ReLeaf Michigan in 1993,
it takes place every two years and helps catalog the state’s biggest
trees. Your assignment: Seek out the most majestic trees in your area
and report them, because tree-spotters can earn certificates and
“This is a really fun
reason to get out and enjoy nature,” said Melinda Jones, executive
director of ReLeaf Michigan. “It also helps raise awareness and
enjoyment of the trees in our landscape.”
The Big Tree Hunt is
one way to discover candidates for the National Register of Big Trees,
which so far includes 19 Michigan trees. The biggest tree spotted on
the last hunt is a sycamore in Lenawee County with a 315-inch girth.
ReLeaf Michigan is a nonprofit that encourages planting trees.
Additional Big Tree Hunt sponsors include the DNR, the Arboriculture
Society of Michigan, the Consumers Energy Foundation, the DTE Energy
Foundation and the Michigan Botanical Club. Learn more about the DNR’s
Urban and Community Forestry Program at
online or hard copy, will be accepted until September 3rd, 2019. Find out
how to participate by visiting bigtreehunt.com,
calling 800-642-7353 or emailing
21MAY18-Willing to work for your warmth this winter? Apply now for
a fuel wood permit from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.
Where can you cut? A new,
highlights state forest areas in the northern Lower Peninsula where
Michigan residents are allowed to collect up to five standard cords of
wood from downed, dead trees. Upper Peninsula residents also may get
fuel wood permits from their
local state forest management unit offices.
“The new map will help people who want to cut wood decide where to
go,” said Deb Begalle, chief of the DNR’s Forest Resources Division.
“Then we encourage people to visit potential collection areas to
determine what wood is down and available.”
You can obtain a permit in two
ways: Visit a DNR office in person or download a mail-in permit order
The site also includes the interactive map and a map of DNR offices
that offer fuel wood permits.
Permits cost $20 each and are good for 90 days. All permits expire
December 31st, 2018. The department issues as many as 3,500 fuel wood
permits each year. Wood cut on a fuel wood permit is intended for
personal use and cannot be sold.
To help prevent the spread of
invasive species such as the emerald ash borer or oak wilt, the DNR
advises against moving firewood around the state. Learn more about
firewood rules and recommendations on the
Michigan Department of Agriculture’s website.
For more information, contact