Fishing Gale warnings have kept boat anglers off the Great Lakes the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) reported. Strong wave action has made for dangerous conditions on the piers too, keeping those anglers on shore. When they can get out, fish are being caught, but it is slow. The Chinook runs are winding down and the remaining fish are deteriorating. Steelhead fishing should get better. South Haven boat and pier anglers have not been able to go out because of the windy conditions. There were no perch reports and when anglers could get on the pier, the bite was slow for all species. Black River anglers were out trying, but the steelhead fishing was slow. The Kalamazoo River is still producing a few salmon, but most are turning quite dark. Steelheads were caught on spawn, small spoons, spinners and crawlers. Anglers that occasionally could get out on the pier in St. Joseph and word was that steelhead were around, fishing was slow. St. Joseph River had steelhead spotted going through the fish ladder at the Berrien Springs Dam. Try spinners, spoons, flies, crawlers or eggs in the swift moving water. For those looking for great places to go fishing, or are an avid angler that wants some inside information, check out the various fishing-related maps available online at the DNR web site to help in angling adventures. Inland Lake Maps: There are more than 11,000 lakes in Michigan and the DNR has maps for 2,700 of them. These maps can help with inland lake fishing efforts and highlight shore features, vegetation and other water body specifics. Inland Trout and Salmon Regulations Maps: These maps assist anglers in locating waters that contain trout and salmon and the regulations that apply to these waters. The DNR announced that beginning October 22, Ludington State Park in Mason County began the annual process of lowering Hamlin Lake to its winter water levels. The winter level is maintained at approximately two feet below the summer level and is necessary to control ice damage and erosion. For more information on the lake-lowering process, contact James Gallie, park supervisor, at 231-543-2423.
Hunting IMPORTANT: ‘DO NOT EAT’ advisory issued for deer taken within five miles of Clark’s Marsh, Oscoda Township. The Michigan departments of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) and the DNR issued a ‘Do Not Eat’ advisory for deer taken within approximately five miles of Clark’s Marsh in Oscoda Township. This is due to high levels of PFOS (perfluorooctane sulfonic acid) found in a single deer taken about two miles from the Marsh, which borders the former Wurtsmith Air Force Base. PFOS is one type of PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) chemical. PFAS are chemicals that are in Class B fire-fighting foam that was used at the air force base near Wurtsmith and other sites in Michigan. These chemicals are also found in stain and water repellants, personal care products, and many other consumer goods. Some health studies have linked PFAS to health issues such as thyroid disease, increased cholesterol levels, impaired immune system function, reproductive issues, high blood pressure in pregnant women, and increased chance of kidney and testicular cancer. It is unknown how PFOS could accumulate to this level in deer. The level of PFOS in the muscle of this deer was 547 parts per billion, exceeding the level of 300 ppb at which action is recommended. PFAS was either not found or was in low levels in muscle samples from the other 19 deer checked. MDHHS and MDNR advise hunters to dispose of any deer in their freezer that may have come from this area and do not eat it. For health questions contact MDHHS at 1-800-648-8942. Hunters can contact the MDNR at 517-284-6057 for information about deer tags that were used in this region. For more information about wild game consumption visit www.michigan.gov/eatsafegame and go to the Eat Safe Wild Game button. A 4-year-old doe killed on a deer damage shooting permit in Dickinson County’s Waucedah Township has tested positive for chronic wasting disease (CWD), marking the first conformation of the incurable deer disease within Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The deer was shot on an agricultural farm about four miles from the Michigan-Wisconsin border. Russ Mason, chief of the DNR’s Wildlife Division said, “We need to determine if this deer is an individual outlier or whether there are more deer infected in the area”. The DNR has tested hundreds of deer from Upper Peninsula counties bordering Wisconsin. This year alone (as of Oct.11) a total 625 deer-damage permit, road kill and hunter-killed deer have been tested from Dickinson, Gogebic, Menominee and Iron counties. A roughly 10-mile core area has been set up, centered on Waucedah Township. Within this area the DNR has set a goal to test a minimum of 600 deer to better determine the extent of possible infected deer. We need hunters to help us reach this goal, by voluntarily submitting entire deer heads for testing. Hunters can keep the venison,” Mason said. “At this point, we are not establishing a mandatory deer check in the area, but that may become necessary, if we don’t reach our goal.” More information on CWD is available at www.michigan.gov/cwd.
Coloma Rod & Gun Club The Coloma Rod & Gun Club will hold their monthly CCW Class on Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018. Class registration is held on Sunday, Nov. 4, 2018 from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. The class is taught by a certified NRA and RSO instructor and the cost of the class is $100. For more information, please call (269) 621-3370.
MISTAKEN IDENTITY… Mark Baldwin found a moth like this on the handle of his shovel while spreading gravel at his Danneffel Lake farm. Many people mistake this large moth identified as a white-lined sphinx hummingbird moth for a hummingbird because it hovers over flowers and drinks the nectar before zooming away.
This week, a flock of pine siskins, spinus pinus, arrived and have been visiting our bird feeders since Friday. These goldfinch sized finches are irruptive visitors, showing up one year and not the next. This may be attributed to the distribution and abundance of seeds, their main food source. Most often eaten are buds and seeds of alders, birches, pines, hemlocks and thistle and hulled sunflower seeds at bird feeders. They will also eat insects. Pine siskins can store up to ten percent of their body weight, which comes in handy during freezing temperatures when the birds can slowly release the energy stored in their crops to stay warm. The pine siskin’s cold tolerance is unparalleled in birds of similar size, like the common redpoll and American goldfinch. This species is almost always seen in flocks visiting feeders alongside American goldfinches. Their size is similar, but the pine siskin is streaked in brown and white with yellow on their wingtips and tail. This yellow is mostly seen in flight and brighter in males. Visit the Nature Center on Saturday, October 27 between 6:30 and 8:30 p.m. for a family-fun Halloween event! Volunteers and staff will be on hand to help you discover wild creatures and fun activities, including a wagon ride, along the lighted trail. Snacks, a craft and our education animals will be inside. Cost is $5 per person. Bring a flashlight!