Effort to reintroduce Arctic Grayling to Michigan moves forward

Nov 14, 2017

A public-private partnership is growing in an  effort  to bring a native fish back to Michigan. The Arctic Grayling disappeared from state waters in the 1930’s. Now biologists are fighting climate change to bring it back.

Ed Eisch is the Fish Production Program Manager for the Michigan DNR. He said Arctic Grayling died off in Michigan in the 1930’s after water temperatures rose.

“We’ve tried Grayling reintroduction in Michigan before. But we’ve learned a lot since our last efforts. Our last efforts were in the late 1980’s”.

Eisch said Michigan plans to use a model proven from Montana this time.

“The state of Montana has actually had a significant amount of success in their Grayling reintroduction efforts in recent years and we’re going to be following their model”.

Eisch said the soonest they would bring in eggs from Montana or Alaska to begin breeding a brood stock is 2019.

“There is some concern going forward with global warming that way into the future we may see some issues. But all of the streams that we’re looking at are appropriate in temperature in large part because ground water makes up the total flow in the stream. So, they’re getting that constant influx of cold water from the ground”.

He said they plan to raise a brood stock at the Oden State Fish Hatchery for three consecutive years before they release any Grayling into streams.