Week of April 11, 2011

World
Misc New Fishing-Boating Products
Hunting & Shooting Products/Issues
Regional

General
Michigan
New York
Ohio
Other Breaking News Items

 

       Weekly News Archives

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       New Product  Archives

World

Torch Lake Atlantic Salmon Recognized As World Record

The Department of Natural Resources is pleased to announce that the International Game Fish Association (IGFA) has recognized an Atlantic salmon caught at Torch Lake in Antrim County last October as a world record for land-locked Atlantics.  The record Atlantic salmon, caught by Indiana resident Tom Aufiero, weighed 26.12 lbs. Aufiero, who caught the fish while fly fishing with a shrimp pattern, released the fish after weighing it. 

 

IGFA regulations require that scales used to weigh potential record fish must have been calibrated and certified as accurate within a year of the catch. Aufiero’s  salmon was weighed on an uncertified hand-held scale, but

the scale was sent to the IGFA, which tested it and certified it as accurate.  The IGFA certified the record March 7, 2011.

 

“It doesn’t surprise me to see a 26-pound Atlantic come out of Torch Lake,” said DNR fisheries biologist Mark Tonello of Cadillac. “We know Torch Lake is capable of producing big lake trout, big muskies, and last year someone caught a 29-pound brown trout there.”

 

The previous IGFA all-tackle world record for land-locked salmon was a 24.11 lb specimen caught in Sweden in June 2010.

Torch Lake was last stocked with Atlantic salmon in 2008.

 


Misc New Fishing-Boating Products

Frabill Econo-Aerator Pump

Bait Saving Device priced like two 'Happy Meals'

Now you can buy those premium minnows, and for ten bucks insure their health & welfare. Every day, one of the great mysteries in fishing repeats itself dozens of times at any given bait shop. Fishermen happily parting with $30, $50, even $100 for live minnows blindly dump them into a bucket of water—minus a life support system—yet expect to still have healthy fish food an hour or even days later. Perhaps frustrated by the notion that an aerator adds another expense, cutting into day-old donuts and un-chewable jerky, they carelessly choose unhealthy eating to the survival of bait

No more. New from the livebait maestros as Frabill the Model #1420 Econo-Aerator pumps new life and fresh air—literally—into any minnow bucket or baitwell. It runs up to impressive 40-hours on 2 D-cell batteries.  The budget-conscious aerator clips to any bucket; sports a flexible rubber air hose and an airstone. The Econo-Aerator features an on off switch that’s watertight, too, thanks to a rubber-gasket cover. In a pinch, if you’re pinching pennies, it even runs on one battery by itself.

 

A single $10 investment can save you a lot of money in livebait down the road, always keeping your minnows fresh, healthy and happy. At Frabill we like bait that’s happy, and so do the fish

 

About $10.00

 

www.frabill.com

 


Northland Bionic Panfish Fishing Line

The BIONIC PANFISH™ LINE is the smoothest and easiest casting line I have ever used for catching Jumbo Perch, Bull Bluegills, Slab Crappie and Trophy Trout! It is engineered with the balanced properties of strength, lite-bite sensitivity, ultimate invisibility and silky smooth flexibility needed to put more panfish in the bucket. From the panfish experts at Team Northland®, BIONIC PANFISH™ LINE is the line I depend on to pound more perch, slay more slabs and take more trout!"

 

The BIONIC PANFISH™ LINE is a smooth, easy casting monofilament designed for the serious panfish angler by "The Pan-Man" Brian "Bro" Brosdahl and the legendary Team Northland® Pro Staff. It is engineered with the balanced properties of strength, lite-bite sensitivity, ultimate invisibility and silky smooth flexibility needed to put more fish in the frying pan.

BIONIC PANFISH™ CLEAR MONO

Two BIONIC PANFISH™ Line colors for fooling line-shy fish in any water clarity. The CLEAR formula for crystal clear water and the exclusive, new Vertical AquaFlage BLUE CAMO formula that is color blended by hand for hi-visibility and line watching above the water and ultimate low visibility under the water.

 

BIONIC PANFISH™ BLUE CAMO

For "upward" feeding fish like bluegills, crappie, trout or perch, the different blue shadings in the BIONIC PANFISH™ BLUE CAMO breaks-up and blends-in against a blue sky background, creating nominal line silhoutetting and visibility to a fish looking up at the bait. It's camouflage for the water surface and the sky.

 

Available in 4 & 5 lb test

 

About $5.79

 

800-SUN_FISH

 

www.northlandtackle.com

 


Hunting & Shooting Products/Issues

Rossi Ranch Hand Lever Action Pistol
Rossi has introduced the new Ranch Hand, a smooth 6-shot lever action pistol that carries and stows easily at a mere 24" in length. Whether you are riding out on four legs or four wheels, Rossi’s new Ranch Hand is ready for mending fences, patrolling property or simply plinking down range.
 
This repeating center-fire pistol is available in .38/.357, .45 Colt or .44 Magnum. The Ranch Hand is offered in a case hardened (only .45 Colt) or matte blue finish with a

 

beautiful Brazilian hardwood stock and features adjustable

buckhorn sights for fast target acquisition. Additional features include a generously oversized lever loop that fits gloved hands, saddle ring with leather strap and the unique onboard Taurus Security System®. The Ranch Hand’s forged barrel measures 12" long with an overall length of 24 inches. When empty the firearm weighs just 4.9 lbs.

 

About $536 - $614.00

 

305-474-0401
 
 www.rossiusa.com


Taurus Versatile Tracker Series Revolver

Transforms from .22 LR to .22 Magnum in seconds

MIAMI - No other revolver in its class comes close to matching the versatility of the new Taurus Tracker 992. It easily transforms from .22 LR to .22 Magnum in seconds with its breakthrough button release 9-shot cylinder. The Tracker 992 is everything you could ever want for plinking, target practice or varmint hunting with these popular and affordable ammunition choices.

The Tracker 992 comes equipped with the exclusive Taurus Ribber Grip® that reduces felt recoil and its strong, ordnance grade steel frame is built to last. Additional features include a single-action/double-action trigger, low

profile adjustable sights and vent-rib that accommodate an optional scope mount base.

 

Available in blue or stainless steel finish with a 4 or 6.5 inch barrel, the Taurus Tracker 992 has an overall length of 8.9 to 11.4" and weighs 38 to 44 oz. Like all Taurus handguns, the unique onboard Taurus Security System® allows users to securely lock the gun using an inconspicuous key-lock.

 

MSRP $545 - $592.00

 

305-624-1126

 www.taurususa.com


Birchwood Casey Bright New Colors To The Dirty Bird Target Line

Birchwood Casey has added three new models to its Dirty Bird® Splattering Target lineup

The targets have a bright chartreuse background that shows the classic Dirty Bird splatter when shot. The target face is black with a red dot for the bull's eye.

          

Dirty Bird Targets are non-adhesive so shooters can take

them down and make notes on them, saving the target for future reference. 

 

Round 6-inch and 8-inch bull's-eye versions, which work great for close to mid-range shooting, along with a 12-inch round combination bull's-eye/sight-in target that gives shooters the best of both worlds are available.

 

Suggested retail is $5.10 each for the 6" Bull's-Eye 16-pack, the 8" Bull's-Eye 8-pack or the 12" Bull's-Eye/Sight-in 4-pack.

 

About $5.10

 

800-328-6156 x7933

 

www.birchwoodcasey.com


 

Regional

MI - Lawmakers want to take the wind out of off-shore turbine sails

LANSING (CNS) – Proposed legislation could keep wind turbines out of the Great Lakes, and that’s good – or bad – depending on perspective.

The sponsor, Rep. Ray Franz, R-Onekama, said the intent is to keep potential hazards out of the blue waters of the Great Lakes.  “It’s not environmentally sound to have machines like these on our lakes. They are our greatest asset, and industrialization on them is a hazard to nature and the economy,” Franz said.

 

The permanent nature of wind turbines and related structures creates problems not only for the environment, but also for ships, he said.” If the basic structures are permanently fixed to the lake floor, it would be an obstacle for ships to sail around and create more dangers for them to deal with,” Franz said.  Aesthetic concerns are also a problem and a majority of residents in his northwest Lower Peninsula district oppose off-shore wind development, he said. “My district is home to one of the longest shorelines of any in the state. People don’t want their view blocked by these big structures.”

 

But Hugh McDiarmid, communications director at the Michigan Environmental Council, said the proposed ban would be bad for the economy and environment.  “It’s bad public policy. Renewable energy like this has been one of the only bright spots for Michigan in recent years, and this is the wrong message to send,” McDiarmid said.  He said that wind energy is a growing industry in the state and a ban could stunt that growth.

 

A recent report by the Environmental Law and Policy Center in Chicago said 120 companies in Michigan were part of the wind industry supply chain as of March.  The report also said there are more than 4,000 jobs tied to the state’s wind industry.  The Renewable Portfolio Standard signed by then-Gov. Jennifer Granholm in 2008, requires that 10 percent of a utility’s electric supply come from renewable energy sources by 2015.

 

McDiarmid said, “Wind power is one of the primary ways utility companies will reach that goal. This proposal would

 

seriously hinder their efforts.”   A February report from the Public Service Commission said that renewable sources produced 3.6 percent of the states power in 2009, an increase from 2.9 percent in 2007. The report said that the proportion of renewable energy is expected to “increase significantly,” with almost 93 percent of the anticipated increase coming through wind power.

 

While wind development isn’t exclusively done on the Great Lakes, McDiarmid said off-shore turbines would create more energy than those on land. “Lakes are better for capturing wind, which makes off-shore development a lot more lucrative,” McDiarmid said. However, he acknowledged that off-shore turbines raise concerns different from those on land. 

 

“It’s a bit more expensive to put them off-shore and it’s more dangerous for the people involved and the environment when you’re building in water,” McDiarmid said.  He said that aesthetics are another problem with off-shore wind development but that the legislation wouldn’t be the right solution.  “We are very supportive of wind energy but not in scenic or protected areas. More guidelines are necessary, but to say no wind at all is a very short-sighted solution,” McDiarmid said.

 

Mark Clevey, manager of the renewable energy program at the Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth, said that off-shore wind development in the state is still in the planning stages.  “There are virtually no off-shore projects as of right now because research still needs to be done,” Clevey said.  According to Clevey, there is not enough information available about wind speed on the Great Lakes, which would help determine where to place wind farms. Also, he said there is uncertainty about how the turbines would be fixed to the floor of the lakes. Floating platforms are being discussed also. However, Clevey said the chances are still good that wind farms will pop up in the Great Lakes in the near future.

 

The bill, co-sponsored by Rep. Jon Bumstead, R-Newaygo, is in the House Energy and Technology Committee.

 


Weekly Great Lakes Water Levels for

April 8, 2011 

WEATHER CONDITIONS

Temperatures across the Great Lakes basin have been near seasonal averages so far this week.  Most areas received rain at the start of the week and a few regions continued to see scattered showers through Wednesday.  Southern parts of the basin will experience rain showers Friday as the temperatures increase.  A spring storm will move into the basin from the west as early as Saturday bringing up to 2 inches of rain in some areas.  This frontal system may remain in the basin through Monday, and then temperatures are expected to drop back down to near seasonal averages.  More chances of showers arrive again later next week.

LAKE LEVEL CONDITIONS

Currently, Lakes Superior and Michigan-Huron are 9 and 10 inches, respectively, below their levels of a year ago.  Lake St. Clair is 3 inches below what it was at this time last year, while Lakes Erie and Ontario are 3 and 4 inches, respectively, higher than last year's levels. Over the next month, Lake Superior is expected to rise 3 inches while Lake Michigan-Huron is predicted to rise 4 inches.  Lakes St. Clair, Erie, and Ontario are also predicted to increase 3, 2, and 4 inches, respectively, during the next thirty days.  See our Daily Levels web page for more water level information.

FORECASTED MONTHLY OUTFLOWS/CHANNEL CONDITIONS

The outflow from Lake Superior into the St. Mary's River is projected to be below average for the month of April.  The outflows from Lake Huron into the St. Clair River, and from

Lake St. Clair into the Detroit River, are expected to be

below average throughout the month of April, while Lake Erie's outflow through the Niagara River is expected to be near average.  The outflow from Lake Ontario into the St. Lawrence River is predicted to be near average.

ALERTS

The water levels of Lakes Superior and Michigan-Huron are below chart datum.  Lake Superior is forecasted to remain below chart datum until August, and Lake Michigan-Huron is expected to be below chart datum until June.  Users of the Great Lakes, connecting channels and St. Lawrence River should keep informed of current conditions before undertaking any activities that could be affected by changing water levels.  Mariners should utilize navigation charts and refer to current water level readings.

 

 

Superior

Mich-Huron

St. Clair

Erie

Ontario

Level for Aug 4

599.97

576.97

573.56

571.33

245.31

Datum, in ft

601.10

577.50

572.30

569.20

243.30

Diff in inches

-14

-6

+15

+26

+24

Diff last month

0

+3

+13

+7

+11

Diff from last yr

-9

-10

-3

+3

+4


General

Boaters Advised About Swamping, Capsizing Situations

COLUMBUS, OH – The swamping and capsizing of a small boat resulting in occupants being unexpectedly immersed in frigid water poses a serious threat to boaters and anglers getting out on the water this time of year as water temperatures slowly begin to warm. 

 

The best way to survive a cold water immersion and guard against hypothermia and drowning is to properly wear a life jacket and be dressed for cold water temperatures instead of warmer air temperatures, according to the Ohio DNR, Division of Watercraft.

 

A few things anglers and boaters can do to be prepared for is to wear an approved life jacket or inflatable vest.  This

keeps a person afloat should they fall off a boat or a boat capsizes.  The second tip is to wear protective clothing, such as synthetics, wool or polypropylene that helps reduce the loss of body heat when immersed in cold water.  A third safety tip is to ensure that boats are properly loaded with people and gear before launching on the water to reduce the chance of swamping and capsizing.

 

More cold water and other boating safety tips are available online at www.ohiodnr.com/watercraft.  The Division of Watercraft reports that among 15 fatal boating accidents last year, none of the victims were found to be wearing a life jacket or vest.  In seven of the accidents, life jackets and vest were not aboard the boats as required by state and federal laws.


PFDs For People With Larger Than Normal Chest Sizes

(Oversize & Extended Straps)

A lifejacket approved in accordance with 46 CFR 160.055 as a Type I is designed and tested to fit a range of chest sizes of at least 75 - 130 cm (30 - 52").  The 52" chest size is currently the largest approved for Type I requirements.  So there is no manufactured Type I lifejacket tested and approved for a chest size larger than 130 cm (52 in), as it exceeds the Type I lifejacket normal size range.  The reality is that the test facility does not have enough test subjects available in the size range to properly test with those large size individuals, and it is impractical to add the expense of design/testing and approval for manufacturers of these devices.

 

The people who are in the upper 4th percentile of the population for chest size may use additional accessories with a device to permit wearing that device.  Clip-on body strap extensions are the preferred method of accommodating large people.  We suggest that an additional length of body strap be added to the main strap, preferably using the same types of materials as used in

the approved device.  The lifejacket or PFD manufacturer

may be willing to provide the clip-on body strap extension or necessary material.  Ideally, the user should test the modified PFD in the water.

 

Modifying a PFD, such as (permanently) adding additional body strap webbing, voids the device's approval, no matter who does the modification.  However, for a person with a chest size over 130 cm (52 inches), using an adult universal lifejacket/PFD with a clip-on body strap extension does not void the approval.  If a PFD manufacturer decides to provide the body strap extension, we recommend that it be provided with a PFD pamphlet and a caution that the PFD with the extension be tested by the individual user.

 

In lieu of the manufacturer, anyone may produce a suitable strap extension device for larger persons without Coast Guard approval.  We advise that any such device be tested in the water as mentioned above.  This would permit the use of the USCG approved device for the larger range of chest sizes.

 

For more USCG info: www.uscg.mil/hq/cg5/cg5214/pfdselection.asp#faq

 


Congress’ Sportsmen's Caucus show support for Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund

Washington, DC - Thirteen members of the bipartisan Congressional Sportsmen's Caucus (CSC) and dozens of staff liaisons from CSC member offices joined the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation (CSF) and the Angling and Boating Alliance Tuesday for a breakfast briefing on reauthorization of the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund as part of the Surface Transportation Bill.

At yesterday's briefing in the Rayburn House Office Building, members of the Angling and Boating Alliance discussed the threats to and the importance of ensuring the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund continued vitality and success as a "user pay, user benefits" program.

"Anglers and the industries that serve them contribute millions of dollars to their respective state economies and contribute millions of conservation dollars to the states and it important that we keep this vital funding intact for future generations," said Rep. Jeff Miller of Florida, U.S. House Co-Chair of the CSC.

The Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund serves as the backbone for conservation funding in the United States-a uniquely American System of Conservation Funding-and is a critical funding pool for a diverse set of

important state and national recreational fishing and
boating programs including: recreational boating safety, fisheries management, habitat conservation, vessel pump-out stations, water and boating access infrastructure programs, aquatic resource education programs, and angler and boater outreach.

 

"The administration supports reauthorization and we will work with members of the Congressional Sportsmen's Caucus to get this done," said Dan Ashe, Deputy Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and nominee for Director. "This is one of the preeminent programs operated by USFWS and the backbone of aquatic resource management as part of a collaborative effort between the federal government and the states."

 

CSF is a member organization of the Angling and Boating Alliance, which includes the American Recreation Coalition (ARC); American Sportfishing Association (ASA); Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies (AFWA); Association of Marina Industries (AMI); B.A.S.S.; Boat Owners Association of the United States (Boat U.S.); Coastal Conservation Association (CCA); Marine Retailers Association of America (MRAA); National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA); National Boating Federation (NBF); National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA); and Trout Unlimited (TU), and is committed to the sustainable future of the Sportfish Restoration & Boating Trust Fund.   Contact: Lance Lemmonds - 202-543-6850 ex19


 

Michigan

Torch Lake Atlantic Salmon Recognized As World Record

The Department of Natural Resources is pleased to announce that the International Game Fish Association (IGFA) has recognized an Atlantic salmon caught at Torch Lake in Antrim County last October as a world record for land-locked Atlantics.  The record Atlantic salmon, caught by Indiana resident Tom Aufiero, weighed 26.12 lbs. Aufiero, who caught the fish while fly fishing with a shrimp pattern, released the fish after weighing it. 

 

IGFA regulations require that scales used to weigh potential record fish must have been calibrated and certified as accurate within a year of the catch. Aufiero’s salmon was weighed on an uncertified hand-held scale, but

the scale was sent to the IGFA, which tested it and certified it as accurate.  The IGFA certified the record March 7, 2011.

 

“It doesn’t surprise me to see a 26-pound Atlantic come out of Torch Lake,” said DNR fisheries biologist Mark Tonello of Cadillac. “We know Torch Lake is capable of producing big lake trout, big muskies, and last year someone caught a 29-pound brown trout there.”

 

The previous IGFA all-tackle world record for land-locked salmon was a 24.11 lb specimen caught in Sweden in June 2010.

Torch Lake was last stocked with Atlantic salmon in 2008.

 


Becoming an Outdoors-Woman Program June 3-5 in the UP

Women seeking to improve their outdoor skills can now register for the 14th annual Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (BOW) summer program, held June 3-5, in Big Bay, a picturesque community overlooking Lake Superior 30 miles north of Marquette.

 

Sponsored by the MDNR, this BOW program offers instruction in more than two dozen kinds of outdoor activities, including kayaking, canoeing, fishing, mountain biking, fly-tying, archery, geocaching, boating and birding.  Volunteer BOW instructors provide basic and advanced instruction that is uniquely tailored to each participant's individual ability, helping the participants learn the basics in a short amount of time.

 

The $175 registration fee includes all food and lodging, as well as most equipment and supplies (except as noted in

 

the registration materials). Participants will be housed in a dorm-style facility at the universally-accessible Big Bay Health Camp, with numerous amenities, including a pool, sauna, tennis courts, hiking and biking trails and easy access to Lake Superior. The BOW summer program also includes special evening programs, such as birding hikes, group bonfires and more.

 

Becoming an Outdoors-Woman workshops are for women, 18 and older, who wish to learn outdoor skills in a relaxed, noncompetitive atmosphere. Early registration is recommended as the workshops tend to fill quickly. A limited number of BOW Scholarships are available to help low-income participants with the cost of registration. For class info and registration materials: www.michigan.gov/bow. For more information, contact Sharon Pitz at the DNR office in Marquette at 906-228-6561 or e-mail pitzs@michigan.gov.     www.michigan.gov/bow.


Last Known Wolverine now on display at Bay City State Recreation Area

Michigan’s only known wild wolverine is now on display at the visitor center at Bay City State Recreation Area. The animal was found dead by hikers last winter at Sanilac County’s Minden State Game Area, where it had lived for much of the previous six years. The wolverine was first discovered by coyote hunters who treed it while running hounds near Bad Axe on Feb. 24, 2004.

 

It was the first wolverine ever verified as living in the wild in Michigan. Michigan is known as the Wolverine State because it was a center for trade in the early trapping

industry and wolverine pelts from the north and west of

Michigan came through the state. Biologists say that if wolverines were native to Michigan, they were extirpated about 200 years ago.

 

It is uncertain how the wolverine arrived in Michigan, though DNA evidence indicates it is related to animals native to Alaska.  The wolverine was mounted by Bay Port taxidermist Sandy Brown; the mount recently won an award from the state’s taxidermy association.

 

Park interpreter Valerie Blashcka said the display has become quite an attraction.  “It’s bringing a lot of visitors who have never been here before,” she said. “It’s really exciting.” The visitor center, located at 3582 State Park Dr., is open Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday noon to 5 p.m.


DNR announces 2011 Demo Day Lower Peninsula Dates

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the Accessibility Advisory Council (AAC) will be holding two accessibility demonstration days in 2011. Demonstration days give persons with disabilities, outdoor recreation professionals and equipment vendors the chance to meet and provide demonstrations for equipment designed to increase accessibility to the outdoors.

The two dates planned in the Lower Peninsula in 2011 are:

June 11 - “Tips-up for the Troops” at Kensington Metropark and “Accessibility Demo Days.” This event will focus on all areas of recreation and accessible equipment. Contact Rick Briggs at 810-229-5880 or rbriggs@biami.org for specifics on the event. To sponsor this event or register as a vendor, contact Daryl Domke at 616-363-2140 or ddomke@sst-mail.com. Vendor registration deadline is Tuesday, June 1, 2011. Everyone (including vendors and sponsor) will need to pay the entrance fees at Kensington Metropark ($5 day pass).

 

Sept. 10 - “DNR Accessibility Demo Day” at the Michigan State U, Demmer Center, East Lansing, MI, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. This event will focus on all areas of recreation and accessible equipment. For more information or to sponsor this event or register as a vendor, contact Daryl Domke at  

616-363-2140 or ddomke@sst-mail.com. Vendor registration deadline is Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2011. Vendors will need to pay the $35 vendor fee to the Demmer Center and complete the Demmer Center vendor application.

 

Types of adaptive equipment may include but is not limited to:

- Mobility assistive devices for recreation, hunting and fishing; 4 wheel-drive wheelchairs and ATV side by side

- Hand-cycling and biking

- Shooting technology

- Crossbows, modified bows and compound bows (All bows must comply with DNR regulations.)

- Adaptive fishing equipment

- Kayaking/canoeing

- Accessible hunting blinds

- Skiing – water and snow

- Pickup truck and van conversions

- Other adaptive equipment for outdoor recreation

 

For more information, contact AAC member Daryl Domke at 616-363-2140 or ddomke@sst-mail.com . Additional information can be found on the web at www.michigan.gov/dnraccessibility.

 


Lawmakers want to take the wind out of off-shore turbine sails

LANSING (CNS) – Proposed legislation could keep wind turbines out of the Great Lakes, and that’s good – or bad – depending on perspective.

The sponsor, Rep. Ray Franz, R-Onekama, said the intent is to keep potential hazards out of the blue waters of the Great Lakes.  “It’s not environmentally sound to have machines like these on our lakes. They are our greatest asset, and industrialization on them is a hazard to nature and the economy,” Franz said.

 

The permanent nature of wind turbines and related structures creates problems not only for the environment, but also for ships, he said.” If the basic structures are permanently fixed to the lake floor, it would be an obstacle for ships to sail around and create more dangers for them to deal with,” Franz said.  Aesthetic concerns are also a problem and a majority of residents in his northwest Lower Peninsula district oppose off-shore wind development, he said. “My district is home to one of the longest shorelines of any in the state. People don’t want their view blocked by these big structures.”

 

But Hugh McDiarmid, communications director at the Michigan Environmental Council, said the proposed ban would be bad for the economy and environment.  “It’s bad public policy. Renewable energy like this has been one of the only bright spots for Michigan in recent years, and this is the wrong message to send,” McDiarmid said.  He said that wind energy is a growing industry in the state and a ban could stunt that growth.

 

A recent report by the Environmental Law and Policy Center in Chicago said 120 companies in Michigan were part of the wind industry supply chain as of March.  The report also said there are more than 4,000 jobs tied to the state’s wind industry.  The Renewable Portfolio Standard signed by then-Gov. Jennifer Granholm in 2008, requires that 10 percent of a utility’s electric supply come from renewable energy sources by 2015.

 

McDiarmid said, “Wind power is one of the primary ways utility companies will reach that goal. This proposal would

seriously hinder their efforts.”   A February report from the Public Service Commission said that renewable sources

produced 3.6 percent of the states power in 2009, an increase from 2.9 percent in 2007. The report said that the proportion of renewable energy is expected to “increase significantly,” with almost 93 percent of the anticipated increase coming through wind power.

 

While wind development isn’t exclusively done on the Great Lakes, McDiarmid said off-shore turbines would create more energy than those on land. “Lakes are better for capturing wind, which makes off-shore development a lot more lucrative,” McDiarmid said. However, he acknowledged that off-shore turbines raise concerns different from those on land. 

 

“It’s a bit more expensive to put them off-shore and it’s more dangerous for the people involved and the environment when you’re building in water,” McDiarmid said.  He said that aesthetics are another problem with off-shore wind development but that the legislation wouldn’t be the right solution.  “We are very supportive of wind energy but not in scenic or protected areas. More guidelines are necessary, but to say no wind at all is a very short-sighted solution,” McDiarmid said.

 

Mark Clevey, manager of the renewable energy program at the Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth, said that off-shore wind development in the state is still in the planning stages.  “There are virtually no off-shore projects as of right now because research still needs to be done,” Clevey said.  According to Clevey, there is not enough information available about wind speed on the Great Lakes, which would help determine where to place wind farms. Also, he said there is uncertainty about how the turbines would be fixed to the floor of the lakes. Floating platforms are being discussed also. However, Clevey said the chances are still good that wind farms will pop up in the Great Lakes in the near future.

 

The bill, co-sponsored by Rep. Jon Bumstead, R-Newaygo, is in the House Energy and Technology Committee.

 


Michigan proposes tougher BUI law

Michigan lawmakers are the latest to be considering a bill that would lower the blood-alcohol threshold for boaters from .10 to .08. State Rep. Matt Lori drafted a similar proposal last year, but it did not come up for a vote. He has reintroduced similar legislation for this session. 

 

Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad last week signed a measure into law that sets the blood-alcohol limit for boaters at .08, down from .10.

 

 


‘Ask the DNR One Hour Special’ to Air April 14 on CMU Public Television

Michigan residents will be able to have their questions on natural resources issues addressed by professionals with the Department of Natural Resources when Central Michigan University Public Broadcasting hosts the television program “Ask the DNR” on Thursday, April 14, at 7:30 p.m.

 

This one-hour edition of “Ask the DNR” will be hosted by Bob Garner, a former member of the Michigan Natural Resources Commission and former executive producer and host of the Michigan Out-of-Doors television show. Garner will be joined by DNR Law Enforcement Division Assistant Chief Dean Molnar, Conservation Officer Joe Molnar, DNR Wildlife Chief Russ Mason and DNR Fisheries Biologist Mark Tonello.

In addition to calling the program’s toll-free number 800-727-9268, the public also can e-mail questions to “Ask the

DNR” prior to the broadcast. Viewers should use the title of the show as the subject line and e-mail questions to Brian Baker, the show’s producer, at brian.d.baker@cmich.edu no later than 5 p.m. on April 14.

 

The “Ask the Specialists” series airs Thursday evenings on CMU Public Television, offering viewers access to a variety of professions each week. A service of Central Michigan University, CMU Public Broadcasting (WCMU) informs and entertains its audience throughout Michigan with programming and services that reflect and respect the cultures of our state and world. CMU Public Television includes WCML Channel 6 Alpena, WCMU Channel 14 Mt. Pleasant, WCMW Channel 21 Manistee, WCMV Channel 27 Cadillac and WCMZ Channel 28 Flint.


DNR to Propose Closing 23 State Forest Campgrounds

The Michigan DNR announced that the state’s Forest Recreation Program has seen a 63-percent decrease in funding in the last three years, resulting in the need for the department to close 23 under-performing state forest campgrounds in the northern Lower Peninsula and the Upper Peninsula.

 

The order to close the 23 campgrounds will be submitted as a proposal at today’s Michigan Natural Resources Commission (NRC) meeting in Lansing, and will be eligible for action by DNR Director Rodney Stokes at the NRC’s May 12 meeting in Flint. If approved at the May meeting, the closures would be effective on May 19, 2011.

 

State forest campgrounds are not state parks. State forest campgrounds are rustic sites with fewer amenities than a state park. They are unstaffed and provide a more rustic, tent camping experience. Every state forest campground is located on a river or lake, and more than 60 campgrounds have nearby pathways for non-motorized trail recreation, such as hiking, biking, horseback riding and nature observation. Accommodations range from five to 50 campsites, with group sites available. All campgrounds have vault toilets and potable water from hand pumps.

General Fund support for state forest recreation programs, such as the state forest campgrounds, has been reduced every year since 2009, when $72,200 was cut. In 2010, $24,100 was cut from the program, and in Fiscal Year 2011, the program is targeted for a $314,700 General Fund reduction.

 

“While revenue has remained even in the last decade, due to camping fee increases in 2002 and in 2007, state forest campground fees are now at the high end of the market at $15 a night per individual site,” said Cara Boucher, assistant chief of the DNR’s Forest Management Division. “Meanwhile, the number of registrations and campers has steadily dropped over the same period. Given the long-term trend of declining use and the inability to raise camp fee revenues, the only way to absorb the current cut in General Fund support is to close some campgrounds.”

To address the reduced camping demand and insufficient funding to maintain all state forest campgrounds, the DNR

will close underutilized campgrounds, Boucher said.

“We will preserve the campgrounds that perform well, and provide a diverse selection for the campers,” Boucher said. “The campgrounds targeted for closure are under-performing and close to other state forest campgrounds, so we can still provide camping opportunities in those areas.”

 

Currently, the highest-performing state forest campground generates more than $40,000 a year annually in revenue, while the lowest-performing generates just over $300 a year.

The campgrounds targeted for closure are:

·         Beaufort and Big Lake state forest campgrounds – Baraga County

·         Black Lake Trail Camp – Cheboygan County

·         Lime Island State Forest Campground and Cabins and  Munuscong River State Forest Campground – Chippewa County

·          Manistee River Bridge State Forest Campground – Crawford County

·         Deer Lake State Forest Campground – Iron County

·          Bray Creek State Forest Campground – Lake County

·         Blind Sucker #1, High Bridge, Holland Lake, Natalie and Reed & Green Bridge state forest campgrounds – Luce County

·         Black River State Forest Campground – Mackinac County

·         Little Wolf Lake State Forest Campground – Montmorency County

·         McCollum Lake State Forest Campground – Oscoda County

·          Pigeon Bridge and Round Lake state forest campgrounds – Otsego County

·         Canoe Lake, Cusino Lake, Mead Creek and South Gemini Lake state forest campgrounds – Schoolcraft County

·         Long Lake State Forest Campground – Wexford County

   

To read the informational memo on the state forest campground closures provided to the NRC at the April 7 meeting, go to the NRC’s website at www.michigan.gov/nrc and click on Agendas and Minutes to find the April 7 agenda. To read the memo, click on the box for the order on page two of the agenda.


DNR meeting, Moose Hunting Advisory Council April 13

The Michigan DNR announced the Moose Hunting Advisory Council has its first meeting on Wednesday, April 13, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The meeting is open to the public and will be held at the Holiday Inn located at 1951 U.S. 41 West in Marquette.

 

The seven-member council was created under a law passed by the Legislature in 2010.  The council is charged with considering the impacts moose hunting would have on

the moose population and the various economic benefits

associated with moose hunting. The council could develop recommendations to the Natural Resources Commission (NRC). 

 

The council will meet a number of times throughout the next year and must submit its report to the NRC, the Department and the Legislature no later than Dec. 22, 2011. At the April meeting, the council will discuss the charge of the group, review a DNR moose management scientific paper and discuss next steps.


New York

DEC suspends sales of Marine Saltwater Fishing License

Sport Anglers Do Not Need To Purchase Licenses for 2011

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced that a recreational marine fishing license is no longer required to fish in the marine district of New York, including fishing for migratory fish from the sea (e.g. striped bass) on the Hudson River below the Troy Dam.

 

The DEC reminds anglers that they should not attempt to purchase licenses through DECALS, the online license sales system. DEC has also notified its 1,500 license sales agents that the saltwater fishing license should no 

longer be sold.

 

Legislation included in the final state budget directs DEC to establish a no-fee registry to take the place of the marine license. DEC expects to have the new registry in place in early June. In the interim, saltwater anglers may fish without a marine license and without registering with DEC.

 

The new law also directs DEC to provide refunds to holders of a lifetime recreational marine fishing license. Refunds are expected to be sent out during this calendar year. Information on how to apply for a refund will be announced at a later date. There are no provisions in the newly enacted legislation to refund other marine license fees.


Conservation Officers Arrest Men For Stolen State Property

Following a state investigation into the theft of three outboard motors reported stolen on April 5, 2011, state Environmental Conservation Officers (ECOs) arrested two Clinton County men late Thursday, April 7, 2011 on charges of criminal possession of stolen property in the 5th degree.

 

The stolen motors were state-owned property and belonged to two Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) law enforcement boats and one DEC forest ranger boat. The motors were discovered missing from outside the storage area of the Schuyler Falls maintenance shop. All of the motors were mounted on boats.

 

Brian Lashway, 25, of Altona and Jason Daniels, 25, of Schuyler Falls were arraigned in the Town of Schuyler Falls Court on Thursday and remanded to the Clinton

County Jail in lieu of $700.00 bail each. The men are scheduled to answer the charges in the Town of Schuyler Falls Court on April 21, 2011, and face fines of up to $1,000 and up to one year in jail.

 

A photo of one of the lead officers in this case, ECO Lester Taylor, with the three recovered motors can be viewed at ftp://ftp.dec.ny.gov/dpae/press/eco/p4080011.jpg .

 

ECOs are investigating an additional burglary at a DEC Facility in Northern Franklin County. Items stolen include: Two Hummingbird depth finders, flare kits, a propeller, anchor, floating distress strobe, fire extinguisher and first aid kit. Anyone with information is urged to contact the Environmental Conservation Police at 1-877-457-5680 or 1-800-TIPP-DEC or report an environmental violation online at www.dec.ny.gov/regulations/67751.html on the DEC website.

 


Ohio

Ohio Wildlife Council Passes Ohio River Fishing Regulations

COLUMBUS, OH - At the April 6 meeting of the Ohio Wildlife Council, rules to unify several fishing regulations along the entire Ohio River were passed according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife.

 

The Ohio River Fisheries Management Team, which consists of the fishery resource managers from Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Kentucky, Indiana, and Illinois, is working towards greater uniformity in regulations between the eastern and western units of the Ohio River, and throughout the river among all border states.  This will mean that Ohio River anglers will encounter the same fishing regulations at any place on the Ohio River.

 

Regulations passed in the Eastern Unit include implementing a 12-inch minimum length limit for black bass (largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass); changing striped, hybrid striped and white bass from “no daily limit” (with no more than four over 15 inches) to a daily limit of 30 (with no more than four over 15 inches);

and removing yellow bass from this regulation.  It was also approved to implement a black and white crappie daily limit of 30 fish, and remove the Northern pike daily limit and minimum length limit.

 

In the Western Unit, regulations approved were to change the 12-inch minimum length limit for largemouth and smallmouth bass to include all black bass (largemouth, smallmouth, and spotted bass).  Also, this approved regulation removed yellow bass from the striped, hybrid striped, and white bass combination for regulations.

 

A 9-inch minimum size limit on crappie with a 30-fish daily bag limit was approved for Metzger Reservoir in Allen County and the Mahoning River between Berlin Lake and Lake Milton in Mahoning and Portage counties and the Mahoning River from the dam at Lake Milton to West Mahoning/Trumbull County Line Rd.

 

This approved regulation will add these two areas to the already 44 existing waterways with the same regulations.

The final approved proposal is for a 10-horse power limit on Wayne R. Carr Lake in Paulding County.


Ohio Spring Turkey Hunting Season Opens April 18
Youth-only hunt set for Saturday and Sunday, April 16-17

COLUMBUS, OH - Spring wild turkey hunting opens in all 88 Ohio counties on Monday, April 18, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), Division of Wildlife.  The season continues through Sunday, May 15.

 

Hunters harvested 23,421 wild turkeys during last year's youth and spring turkey seasons. Reynolds added that Ohio's current wild turkey population is around 200,000.  He anticipates as many as 70,000 licensed hunters, not counting private landowners hunting on their own property, will enjoy Ohio's popular spring wild turkey season.

 

A special youth-only turkey hunt for those possessing a valid youth hunting license and youth turkey permit will be held on Saturday and Sunday, April 16-17.  Young hunters must be accompanied by a non-hunting adult, 18 years of age or older.  The young hunter's turkey season is open statewide with the exception of Lake La Su An State Wildlife Area in Williams County which requires a special hunting permit. Legal hunting hours are a half-hour before sunrise to sunset each day during the two-day youth season.

 

Hunters must still report their harvest of turkeys, but they are no longer required to take their turkey to a check station for inspection.  Hunters will have three options to complete the automated game check: On the Internet at

www.wildohio.com or www.ohiogamecheck.com, -877-824-

4864. This option is only available to those who are required to purchase a turkey permit to hunt turkeys, or at all license agents.

 

Game-check transactions will be available online and by telephone seven days a week and during holidays.  Landowner hunters who are not required to purchase a spring turkey permit must use the Internet or any license agent to check their turkey.  Hunters who tag their turkey as a landowner harvest cannot use the phone-in method.  All authorized license sales agents will also check in your game.  A list of these agents can be found at www.ohiodnr.com/wildlife/dow/regulations/vendor.aspx.

 

Legal hunting hours are one-half hour before sunrise until noon from April 18 to May 1, 2011.  Hunting hours from May 2-15 will be a half-hour before sunrise to sunset.  Hunters are required to have a hunting license and a spring turkey-hunting permit and can take one bearded turkey per day.  A second spring turkey permit can be purchased allowing hunters to take a limit of two bearded wild turkeys.

 

Shotguns using shot, longbows, and crossbows may be used to hunt wild turkeys.  It is unlawful to hunt turkeys over bait, to use a live decoy or electronic calling device, or to shoot a wild turkey while it is in a tree. The Division of Wildlife advises turkey hunters to wear hunter orange clothing when entering, leaving or moving through hunting areas in order to remain visible to others. 


Ohio Hunting and Trapping Regulations Approved for 2011-12 

COLUMBUS, OH – Hunting and trapping regulations for 2011-12 seasons were passed by the Ohio Wildlife Council at the April 6 meeting, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife.

 

The proposed change to move Fayette County from Deer Zone B to Zone A was approved.  A rule to eliminate the requirement for all packages of deer meat produced during the butchering process to be marked with the tag, seal or certificate number was also passed.  The tag, seal or certificate must be maintained until the entire deer has been consumed, but the package no longer needs to be marked.

Hunters can again buy antlerless deer permits at reduced prices for hunting in an urban zone, participating in a Division of Wildlife-authorized controlled hunt or hunting during the September 24 to November 27 portion of the deer season.  The sale of reduced priced antlerless permits will cease after November 27, so hunters need to commit early to buying and using the extra reduced-cost permits to take full advantage of this opportunity. The deadline for using the antlerless permit will be extended to December 4 for those hunting in Deer Zone C.  Cost of the antlerless deer permit remains $15.

 

The maximum number of deer that a hunter may take in Deer Zone A is two.  Prior to November 28, hunters may take up to two deer in Zone A, one of which may be on a $15 antlerless deer permit.  Beginning November 28, hunters may take only one deer in Zone A and antlerless permits may not be used.

 

The maximum number of deer that a hunter may take in Deer Zone B is four.  Prior to November 28, hunters may take up to four deer in Zone B, two of which may be on $15 antlerless deer permits.  Beginning November 28, hunters may take only two deer in Zone B and antlerless permits may not be used.

 

The maximum number of deer that a hunter may take in Deer Zone C is six.  Prior to December 5, hunters may take up to six deer in Zone C, three of which may be on $15 antlerless deer permits.  Beginning December 5, hunters may take only three deer in Zone C and antlerless permits may not be used.

 

Those hunting in urban zones and at Division of Wildlife-authorized controlled hunts will again have a six-deer bag limit, and those deer will not count against the hunter's zone bag limit.

 

Either a $15 antlerless deer permit and a valid hunting license or $24 deer permit and a valid hunting license are required to hunt deer in Ohio.  A hunter may take only one antlered deer in Ohio, regardless of zone, hunting method or season.

 

2011-12 White-tailed Deer Seasons and Dates 

  • Archery season – September 24 through February 5, 2012

  • Special area muzzleloader hunts – October 17-22

  • Youth deer-gun season – November 19-20

  • Statewide deer-gun season – November 28 through December 4 and December 17-18

  • Statewide muzzleloader season – January 7-10, 2012

During the 2010-2011 season hunters killed a total of 239,260 deer.  Approximately 475,000 people hunt white-tailed deer in Ohio.

Hunting seasons for rabbit, pheasant, quail, squirrel, crow, and wild turkey were approved as proposed.  So were trapping seasons for beaver, mink, muskrat, and river otter, along with the hunting and trapping seasons for beaver, fox, raccoon, skunk, and weasel.

 

2011-12 Hunting and/or Trapping Seasons and Dates

  • Squirrel – September 1 through January 31, 2012

  • Ruffed grouse – October 8 through January 31, 2012

  • Fall Wild Turkey – October 8 - November 27, in specified counties

  • Youth upland season – October 22-23 and October 29-30

  • Cottontail rabbit – November 4 through February 29, 2012

  • Ring-necked Pheasant – November 4 through January 8, 2012

  • Bobwhite Quail  – November 4-27, in specified counties

  • Fox, raccoon, skunk, opossum, and weasel – November 10 through January 31, 2012

  • Mink and muskrat – November 10 through February 29, 2012

  • Mink, muskrat, raccoon, skunk, opossum, and weasel (Lake Erie Marsh area) – November 10 through March 15, 2012

  • Beaver – December 26 through February 29, 2012

  • River Otter – December 26 through February 29, 2012

  • Youth Spring Wild Turkey Season – April 21 and 22, 2012

  • Spring Wild Turkey – April 23, 2012 through May 20, 2012

  • Crow (Fri, Sat, Sun only) – June 3, 2011 through March 12, 2012 and June 2, 2012 through March 11, 2013

  • Coyote and woodchuck – No closed season

 

Rules and season dates for migratory birds including mourning dove, Canada goose, rail, moorhen, snipe, woodcock, and waterfowl hunting will be set in August, in compliance with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service's 2011-12 framework.

All hunting and trapping season dates and rules can be found at wildohio.com.


Other Breaking News Items

(Click on title or URL to read full article)

 

www.southbendtribune.com/news/sbt-20110408sbtmichb-03-03-20110408,0,7002835.story

The Indiana DNR and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are hosting a meeting scheduled at 7 p.m. April 14 at City Hall. For years, chemicals have been released in Trail Creek to control the numbers of sea lampreys, which prey upon popular Lake Michigan game fish such as perch, trout and salmon.

A 4' tall dam stretching across Trail Creek will be built to keep sea lampreys from spawning.

 

Lake Metroparks connecting green dots to benefit steelhead anglers

Connecting green dots is a management goal that has been a formula for fishing success around the Lake Metroparks in Lake County, a world class destination for steelhead trout. Two of the very best steelhead trout fishing locations in the Lake Metroparks are Chagrin River Park on the Chagrin River

 

Corps turns on third electric fish barrier on Chicago canal . The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has turned on a third electric fish barrier on the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal. The barrier is designed to prevent Asian carp and other fish from migrating between the Great Lakes and Mississippi River watersheds.

 

A walleye cold spell in Detroit River
Most of the walleyes in the Detroit River run come from Lake Erie, but some come downstream from Lake Huron and Lake St. Clair. Fisheries biologists believe spawning success is linked to an unusually cold spring, and if that is correct, 2011 could see another huge hatch of walleyes.

 

NY changes rules for carrying bait
The state Department of Environmental Conservation says it's changing regulations banning the overland transport of uncertified baitfish by anglers, including baitfish that are personally collected. The changes are in response to complaints that regulations adopted in 2007 to limit the spread of fish disease were too restrictive.

 

West Michigan lawmakers propose total ban of wind turbines on Michigan's Great Lakes
Two West Michigan legislators have proposed a law to ban wind turbines in Michigan's Great Lakes. State Reps. Ray Frantz, R-Onekama, and Jon Bumstead, R-Newaygo, have introduced legislation that would also eliminate any wind testing in the state's Great Lakes.

 

Wolf crosses the Lake Superior ice to become leader of the pack
In Ontario, in the winter of 1997, a particularly virile male wolf stepped onto the ice of Lake Superior and headed toward Isle Royale, an island about 15 miles offshore. There he radically changed the genetic makeup of an isolated group of wolves that had lived there since the late 1940s

 

 

 

 

The opinions expressed here are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the GLSFC, its officers or staff. 

Reproduction of any material by paid-up members of the GLSFC is encouraged but appropriate credit must be given. 

Reproduction by others without written permission is prohibited.

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