Ecologists Work To Restore Lake Michigan Reef For Native Fish

By on August 31, 2015

Ecologists with the Nature Conservancy are working in Grand Traverse Bay to restore deteriorating reefs there, according to the Traverse City Record-Eagle. The move is expected to help spawning populations of lake trout, lake whitefish and lake herring.

Much of the work will involve placing new limestone rocks along a reef area near Elk Rapids, Michigan.

“The only place that we know that they still spawn in Lake Michigan is on this complex. It’s a very important location,” said Matt Herbert, aquatic ecologist with the Conservancy, to the Record-Eagle. “It’s the place they’ve been able to hold on for the last 50 years.”

Rehabilitating the reef should provide plenty of useful nooks and crannies for the fish to spawn, Herbert says. Those will help native fish keep their eggs safe from predators and tough winter weather until spring hatching time.

Grand Traverse Bay. (Credit: Royalbroil/CC BY-SA 3.0)

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