lake trout photo
USFWSmidwest / flickr creative commons

From chinook salmon to rainbow trout, the Great Lakes are known for some of the most incredible freshwater fisheries in the world, but could they also become a hotspot of open water fish farming? We talk to Dr. Bryan Burroughs, executive director of Trout Unlimited, about why environmentalists are saying that would be a bad idea.

Flickr - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Northeast Region

The alewife was once the scourge of the Great Lakes. The small, silver herring made its way into the basin through the St. Lawrence River in the late 19th century and proceeded to wreak havoc on the ecosystem. If you were around the region in the 1960s, you might remember the stench of thousands of dead alewives washing up on Great Lakes beaches. Now, scientists are concerned with a decline in the population of this invasive species and how the shrinking numbers of alewives could impact their main predator, the popular Chinook salmon.

Lots of things end up in Great Lakes that shouldn’t be there. Plastic bottles and microbeads, fertilizer runoff from farm fields, and invasive species are only a few. Now, add to that list prescription drugs. Researchers are increasingly worried about how chemicals from prescription medication could be impacting aquatic wildlife.

Fall on Michigan’s waterways means it’s time for the salmon to spawn. Salmon can be found in many places, including the Red Cedar River and the Grand River.

LISTEN NOW: Grand American Fish Rodeo

Jun 14, 2014
2014 Grand American Fish Rodeo

Current State broadcast live on Saturday, June 14, from the inaugural Grand American Fish Rodeo at Adado Riverfront Park in downtown Lansing. Listen to the full two-hour special here.