Our focus is on evaluating survey results, identifying and addressing any environmental problems along with their underlying causes, and to directly address, protect, preserve, and maintain our reservation’s land, water, and wildlife resources for the future generations of Menominee people.
Invasive Species Surveys
Heather Pyatskowit, Water Resource Specialist, and Joe Lyons, Water Resource Technician, have just finished working on an Invasive Species project on Round, Keshena, Sand, and LaMotte Lakes. The Wisconsin DNR provided us with 809 pre-mapped points on LaMotte Lake and 237 pre-mapped points on Sand Lake for Point-Intersect (PI) surveys to be conducted. Point-Intersect surveys are done by a boat driving from point-to-point following the GPS map, and lowering a rake into the water, twisting the rake to pull a few plants, and identifying the plants pulled. The current invasive species to watch for are, Eurasian Water Milfoil, and Curly-Leaf Pondweed. Although at this time neither one of those species was found in any of the lakes sampled above. The overall goal of these surveys is to check, identify, and stop the spread of these invasive species in our waters. The surveys are also helpful to determine all plant species within a lake. The staff will continue to do PI-surveys on all Reservation lakes within the next few years.
Wolf Howling Surveys
Timber Wolf howling surveys start with a group of people facing in one direction. The howls begin by one person howling one time in each of the four directions. After a silent wait time of 90 seconds to listen for any response, the next set of howls begins. This time, every person will howl in the same direction, immediately turn to howl the next direction, and so on until a howl has been sent in each of the four directions. Again, a wait time of 90 seconds is used to listen for any animals to respond. Howl attempts should be made at 1.5 mile intervals, but can be modified by 0.2 to 0.3 miles to avoid hollows, occupied residences or noisy stream edges, and to take advantage of higher elevations. Wolves are determined by a long powerful howl, and coyotes are determined by short and low yips, yelps, or barks. Howling surveys are done to determine the general location, home site locations, general abundance and pup production in wolf packs on the reservation.
Boat Landing Upgrades
Burney Lake boat landing is up Highway 47/55 just past Neopit on Camp 26 Road. This boat landing had soft banks which had led to heavy erosion from running water and vehicle traffic. The new landing provides easier access to the lake because it is a straight path which makes it easier to back a boat into the lake. The new landing is also gravel covered so vehicles will have better traction and not sink in soft soils when attempting to leave the lake. The project was jointly funded by tribal and USDA NRCS funds. Here is a before and after picture of the upgrade.
On Tuesday September 22nd, United States Fish and Wildlife Service – Genoa Office, Don Reiter, along with the assistance of our intern Kayla Teller, released varying numbers of 4 – 10 inch Walleye fingerlings into Crowell Lake, Hazel Lake and Lake Elma (Peters Lake). The walleye numbers stocked per lake depended upon the size and lake acreage. Legend Lake was stocked with 1,300, 6-8 inch lake sturgeon. All 1,300 sturgeon fingerlings arrived pre-equipped with coated wire ta...gs in their heads for monitoring growth and survival rates. A randomly chosen 100 fingerlings were checked with a special metal detector called the T-Wand. This detector checks the fish species to ensure no coated wire tags were lost during transport. Each coded wire tag has a number on the side of the tag that is unique to each fish and when the fish will be caught in the future, the tag will tell us a lot how that fish lived. This test resulted with a 99/100 success rate of tags still intact. But don’t be so hesitant to go and fish these lakes for better odds after the release. Even though, these fish will not reach good fishing sizes for 5-10 years, Legend Lake has a great Lake Sturgeon Fishery waiting to be used!