West Michigan News Updates from Michigan Sea Grant Extension.
West Michigan Fish Notes - Please allow images


Epigenetics: A new frontier for fisheries research

Epigenetics is a relatively new field of research that involves the expression of genes.  Human health researchers have found epigenetic links to obesity, the effects of ageing, and diseases including Alzheimer's and cancer.  One of the first papers dealing with epigenetics in fish was published in 2016.


Policy brief aims to improve boater education and prevent spread of invaders

Michigan boaters want to protect lakes and rivers from invasive species, but research shows that many boaters are not aware of Michigan regulations.  Boaters are now required to remove all plant material from boats before launching and drain all water from bilges and livewells.

A new report published by MSU's Institute for Public Policy and Social Research lists ten recommendations to improve public outreach and education programs and prevent the spread of aquatic invaders.  The report calls for creation of a detailed outreach message and distribution of that message to all Michigan boaters with their registration renewals. 



What will stocking cut mean for Lake Michigan anglers?

Some Michigan anglers are very concerned that Chinook salmon stocking cuts could hurt fishing in years to come.  Thanks to fin clipping and tagging, we now know more than we ever have about how stocked and wild fish contribute to fisheries.

For 2014-2015 in Michigan waters of  Lake Michigan:

  • 71% of Chinook salmon caught Apr-Sep were wild
  • Only 7% were originally stocked in MI waters of Lake Michigan
  • 11% were originally stocked in Wisconsin
Natural reproduction of Chinook salmon has not been consistent:
  • On average, about 4.5 million wild Chinook salmon smolts enter Lake Michigan each year
  • In 2012, roughly 6.6 million wild Chinooks were produced
  • In 2013, this dropped to about 1.4 million Chinooks
Chinook salmon stocking is being reduced from 1.80 million to 1.35 million in 2017, but the total number of Chinook salmon in Lake Michigan might actually increase if wild reproduction returns to normal (4.5 million/year).  

Are there tsunamis in the Great Lakes?

Surprisingly, the answer is yes!  Great Lakes tsunamis are not caused by earthquakes, but by meteorological events.  These meteotsunamis are not as large as tsunamis that occur in oceans, but they can still be deadly.


Ludington Regional Fisheries Workshop

This year's workshop features an afternoon session with MSU's Quantitative Fisheries Center.  This will conclude with a unique look at the inner workings of fishery models and Q&A with university scientists.

Full Agenda

Cost is $30. 
Hot buffet lunch included.
Pre-register by Dec. 23.

Payment is accepted at door but pre-registraton is required.

January 14, 2017
8:15 a.m. - 3:15 p.m.

West Shore
Community College
Admin. & Conference Building (ACB)
3000 N. Stiles Rd.
Scottville, MI 49454
Campus Map

Register online
or contact Cara Mitchell
(231) 843-5825

Southern Lake Michigan Regional Fisheries Workshop

This workshop will focus on the latest results from 2016 research and monitoring efforts.  Michigan Sea Grant and South Haven Steelheaders co-host this event.

There is no cost to attend.

Thursday, April 20, 2017
7:00 - 9:30 p.m.

South Haven Moose Lodge
1025 Wells St.
South Haven, MI 49090

Freshwater Feasts Blog

Check out Michigan Sea Grant's new blog on fishy cuisine.  From fish-shaped cookies to recipes for favorite catches like whitefish and walleye, you will find it here.

Michigan Sea Grant helps to foster economic growth and protect Michigan’s coastal, Great Lakes resources through education, research and outreach. A collaborative effort of the University of Michigan and Michigan State University, Michigan Sea Grant is part of the NOAA-National Sea Grant network of 32 university-based programs.

Michigan State University is an affirmative-action, equal-opportunity employer. Michigan State University Extension programs and materials are open to all without regard to race, color, national origin, gender identity, religion, age, height, weight, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, marital status, family status or veteran status.

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