Fishing Reports

Stream anglers should be aware of changes in steelhead regulations being discussed by the Natural Resource Commission (NRC). Please see the attached Nyberg amendment that was introduced at the October 12 meeting that calls for lower harvest limits year-round on several Lake Michigan streams. The amendment would reduce the steelhead harvest limit to 1 fish per day. Purposed restrictions on the Pere Marquette River would allow only 1 adipose fin clipped steelhead per/day. Please follow the link for more information. DNR Fisheries Division presentation to NRC: Summary of presentation: • Survey results indicated anglers are highly satisfied with MI’s Steelhead fisheries and regulatory complexity. • Assessments indicate Steelhead are relatively stable after ecological changes • Abundance metrics • Catch rates metrics • Harvest is not perceived as high risk • High levels of voluntary release • Primary mechanisms influencing Steelhead population status • Ecological change – invasive mussels reducing productivity in Great Lakes • Predation • Access to suitable spawning habitat • Fisheries Division recommended retaining existing Steelhead regulations and also recognized the following: • There is an opportunity continue to collect information on the existing 1 fish regulation and reassess if changes are needed when the 2027 regulatory sunset approaches • The perceived benefit of restricted seasonal harvest wouldn’t be realized for several years • Survey results indicated anglers prefer ability for some level of harvest • Both the Division and the NRC recognize that steelhead are highly valued in Michigan and share the interest in maintaining strong steelhead populations and a strong fishery MUCC streaming of NRC meetings: The August 10 NRC meeting, public comments regarding steelhead regulations begin at 1:05/hrs. The September 14 NRC meeting, the DNR Fisheries presentation begins at the 1-minute mark in morning session. Public comments regarding steelhead regulations begin at 18 minutes in afternoon session. The October 12 NRC meeting, public comment 1:09 afternoon session. Commissioner Nyberg reads amendment at 1:31 afternoon session. Amendment attached. Fisheries Division encourages you to provide your perspectives, questions, and comments on this issue to,, Jay Wesley Michigan Department of Natural Resources Lake Michigan Basin Coordinator Ph. 616-490-5090


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