Summer is slowly coming to the end, there are a few updates and events still to come during the summer months left.
Our Annual Wild Game Cookout at the State Fairgrounds in Indianapolis on August 6, 2016 is just the beginning. We would like you to join us at the fair to help out at the event. Please contact Mike Ryan at 219-771-2201. It really is a fun event to be involved with and who doesn't want to go to the State Fair.??! There is plenty of time afterwards to enjoy the Fair.
Our Annual Picnic is scheduled for August 28 on the Steelheaders Property at noon to 4:00pm. Bring your own food and dish for everyone. We will provide the grills to cook. It's a great time for you to tell us about your fish stories and comradery with other steelheaders.
Our Membership General Meeting Place, Izaak Walton in Portage burned down about 2 months ago. We will be meeting on September 8th at the Shirley Heinze Land Trust INC 109 W 700 N Valparaiso Indiana 46385 . More information will be given in the next month before the next General Meeting on September 8, 2016.
Press Release From The DNR:
The DNR will temporarily cease stocking Chinook salmon in Lake Michigan in 2017 out of concern that there isn't enough food in the lake.
Research has shown that the amount of prey fish in Lake Michigan are at historic lows. The decision to reduce Chinook salmon stocking in Indiana waters is part of a multi-state plan to restore balance to the lake's ecosystem and preserve its multi-billion dollar sport fishery.
Biologists hope the lakewide stocking reduction will allow populations of prey fish, such as alewives, to recover.
The Lake Michigan Committee, the group responsible for cooperatively managing Lake Michigan's fisheries, recently announced a 62 percent reduction in lake wide Chinook salmon stocking to take effect in spring 2017. The committee is made up of representatives from Indiana, Illinois, Michigan and Wisconsin and the Chippewa Ottawa Resource Authority fishery agencies.
Since 2013, Indiana has stocked 200,000 chinooks annually. The lake wide stocking plan reduces Indiana's Chinook quota to 45,000 chinooks beginning in 2017. However, given low fall Chinook returns and difficulty obtaining Chinook eggs from out-of-state partners, the DNR's Lake Michigan Management Team decided to suspend Chinook stocking altogether.
In the interim, the DNR will use the free hatchery space to rear an additional 45,000 to 50,000 Skamania steelhead trout to yearling stage for stocking in Lake Michigan, according to Jeremy Price, north region fisheries supervisor with the DNR Division of Fish & Wildlife. Price is also the state's representative to the Lake Michigan Committee.
"We want to consistently give anglers the best fishing opportunities possible," Price said. "Thes steelhead will survive at much higher rates than Chinook, rely less on alewives for food, offer fishing opportunities for boat, pier and stream anglers alike, and give us complete control of our production cycle."
The interim plan likely will be in place for at least three years while biologists evaluate how alewife populations respond.
"If prey fish abundance recovers to acceptable levels, we plan to add chinook back into our stocking mix," Price said.
Indiana's Lake Michigan fisheries biologist Brian Breidert said suspending Chinook stocking was "certainly not a desired outcome." But he added that nearly 70 percent of Chinooks that boat anglers catch in Indiana are wild, not stocked. "So we will continue to have an open-water Chinook fishery in Indiana," Breidert said.
The latest Chinook reduction comes on the heels of a lake wide stocking cut implemented in 2013. That effort saw success, but prey fish recovery was hampered due to poor alewife spawns in consecutive years.
The committee also has slated a cut of 550,000 lake trout to take effect this fall.
The Lake Michigan Fisheries Management Team will have an informational meeting from 7 to 8:30 p.m. CDT on Aug. 10 at the American Legion Post 451, 121 Skwiat Legion Ave., Michigan City.
August 6, 2016 Wild Game Cookout Indiana State Fair
August 10, 2016 -- Cease stocking Chinook salmon Lake Michigan Fisheries Management Team 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the American Legion Post 451, 121 Skwiat Legion Ave., Michigan City.
August 28th 2016 Annual NWI Steelheaders Picnic Noon to 4:00 p.m.
September 8th 2016 -- 7:00 p.m. General Meeting at Shirley Heinze Land Trust INC 109 W 700 N Valparaiso Indiana 46385