CNS budget, Summer 2020 Michigan Environmental Package #3

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August 7, 2020

CNS budget, Summer 2020 Michigan Environmental Package #3

To: CNS Editors

From: Eric Freedman

For technical problems, contact CNS technical manager Tony Cepak at (517) 803-6841;

For other matters, contact Eric Freedman at (517) 355-4729 or (517) 256-3873;

EDITORS: This is our 3rd summer package of Michigan-focused environmental stories in collaboration with our partner, Great Lakes Echo.


NORTHERN HARVEST: Northern Michigan has become better known for a variety of excellent restaurants. We talk to the author and several people she interviewed for a new book that explores the development of food culture there, “Northern Harvest: Twenty Michigan Women in Food and Farming.” By Catherine McEvoy. FOR ALL POINTS.

    w/NORTHERN HARVEST COVER: Credit: Painted Turtle/Wayne State University Press.

CISCO: Once as many as nine types of ciscoes roamed the Great Lakes, playing a key role in the food web but largely disappeared from the lower four Great Lakes in the mid-1900s due to overfishing, competition from invasive species and habitat changes. Several conservation groups supporting Lake Huron are trying to bring them back. If successful, fishery managers on other Great Lakes could follow. We hear from DNR, Great Lakes Fisheries Commission and Alpena Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office. By Lucas Day. FOR ALL POINTS.

    w/CISCO PHOTO: Ciscoes are considered by some in the fisheries community to be the “rabbit of the fish world” because of their important role in the food web. Their reintroduction could spark comebacks for other species like lake trout. Credit: MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

BAT DISEASE: A DNR mine inspector warns that white-nose syndrome, which has no vaccine or cure, is decimating Michiga’s bat population, many of which spend their winters in abandoned U.P. mines. We visit one such mine in Dickinson County. Meanwhile, University of Michigan researchers say there is a glimmer of hope that one of the badly affected bat species will recover. By Cassidy Hough. FOR ALL POINTS.

w/BAT DISEASE PHOTO1: Steve Smith outside his mine in Norway, Michigan. Credit: Cassidy Hough.

w/BAT DISEASE PHOTO  2: A surviving little brown bat in the white-nose-infected Adventure Mine in Greeland in the Western U.P.. Credit: Kristin Jonasson, Bat Conservation International.

NEW INVADER: The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and Department of Natural Resources are worried about a potential new invader attacking the state — the spotted lanternfly, which can attack crops and trees with devastating effect. Vineyards are especially at risk, an MSU Extension expert warns. By Cassidy Hough. FOR ALL POINTS.

w/NEW INVADER GRAPHIC: Spotted lanternflies go through several phases, first resembling spotted beetles before morphing into adult form. Credit: Penn State University College of Agricultural Sciences.

MIGHTY MITES: It’s mosquito season, and scientists at Wayne State University and elsewhere are studying how water mites, who are close relatives to spiders and live in freshwater, can parasitize or prey on mosquitoes. Understanding water mites could be important for developing new ways to control the beasts, which are both annoying and sometimes transit diseases like West Nile virus. We also talk to a Midland County mosquito control official. By Weiting Du. FOR ALL POINTS.

w/MIGHTY MITES PHOTO 1: An adult water mite eating the larva of a common house mosquito. Credit: Adrian Vasquez.

w/MIGHTY MITES PHOTO 2: Adrian Vasquez and a young scientist doing field research at Lake St Clair Metropark i, Harrison Township. Credit: Alma Cruz.

MONARCHS: Insect populations fluctuate from year to year, depending on factors like weather and breeding, but the long-term downward trend in the monarch butterfly population concerns conservationists. The average monarch population from 2010 to 2020 is less than half of what it was the decade before. Experts from monarch conservation groups and an Eaton Rapids farm explain. By Taylor Haelterman. FOR ALL POINTS.

w/MONARCHS PHOTO 1: An adult monarch sits on a flower at the Eaton Rapids hobby farm Fanciful Farming. Credit: Fanciful Farming.

w/MONARCHS PHOTO 2: A monarch emerges from its chrysalis between two unhatched chrysalises at Fanciful Farming in Eaton Rapids. Credit Fanciful Farming.

GREAT LAKES AQUACULTURE: The federal government awarded a $1 million grant to help the Great Lakes states promote aquaculture, including consumer education and correction of misinformation about the health and environmental aspects of fish farming. We hear from Sea Grant exports in the Western UP, Wisconsin and Minnesota. By CarinTunney. FOR ALL POINTS.


GANGSTERS: Northern Michigan – land of hunters and resorters, anglers and campers, sightseers and birders. But also land of mobsters, gamblers, gun molls and booze smugglers? From“Scarface” Al Capone to the UP’s own Public Enemy #1, John “Red” Hamilton, the state’s Up North has historic ties to organized crime and the baddies who used the area as a Prohibition Era playground far from their normal haunts in Chicago, Detroit, Toledo, Cleveland and elsewhere. We talk to the Mount Pleasant-raised author of the new book “Gangsters Up North: Mobsters, Mafia and Racketeers in Michigan’s Vacationlands.” By Eric Freedman. FOR ALL POINTS.

w/GANGSTERS COVER: Credit: Cliophile Press.

w/GANGSTERS PHOTO: Doherty Hotel in Clare. Credit: Eli Skates, Flickr.


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