The number of cases of Lyme disease, caused by bites from the blacklegged tick, climbed from 152 to 404 in Michigan over a four-year period. Pictured is a female blacklegged tick.

As temperatures rise, Great Lakes region faces spike in Lyme disease

LYME DISEASE: Warming temperatures have lengthened the breeding season for the blacklegged tick that carries the bacteria for Lyme disease, and the number of reported cases in Michigan has risen sharply. The ticks live in wooded and rural areas. Increasing concern about climate change could contribute to public demand for a new vaccine. We talk to experts at the Great Lakes Integrated Sciences and Assessments Program in Ann Arbor and nationally. By Lillian Young. FOR CRAWFORD COUNTY, MANISTEE, LUDINGTON, PETOSKEY, ALCONA, MONTMORENCY, CLARE, BENZIE COUNTY, HOLLAND, GREENVILLE, BLISSFIELD, IONIA, CHEBOYGAN, OCEANIA, HERALD REVIEW, LAKE COUNTY, BIG RAPIDS, CADILLAC, LEELANAU, THREE RIVERS, STURGIS, MICHIGAN FARM NEWS AND ALL POINTS.

The Great Lakes region has some of the largest alpaca herds in the country.

Great Lakes farmers look to the future with alpacas

ALPACAS: Move over chickens, cattle and pigs. Alpacas, a transplant from Peru, are growing in popularity among farmers in Michigan and elsewhere in the Great Lakes Region. We hear from the owner of a Mount Pleasant alpaca fiber business and the Great Lakes Alpaca Association. By Anne Hooper. FOR MICHIGAN FARM NEWS, GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS, CORP! AND ALL POINTS.

Erosion from high water levels on the southeastern shore of Lake Michigan has exposed tree roots.

Is Lake Michigan the most dangerous Great Lake?

DROWNINGS: Is Lake Michigan the most dangerous of the Great Lakes when it comes to drownings? This year as of Sept. 30, it accounted for 55 of the lakes’ 94. We hear why from the Army Corps of Engineers, Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project, Great Lakes Water Safety Consortium and Michigan Sea Grant. By Katheleen Fitch. FOR TRAVERSE CITY, LEELANAU, TRAVERSE CITY, PETOSKEY, HOLLAND, LUDINGTON, MANISTEE, ALCONA, CHEBOYGAN, ST. IGNACE, MARQUETTE, HARBOR SPRINGS, BAY MILLS, SAULT STE. MARIE, OCEANA, BENZIE AND ALL POINTS.

New grant funds study of 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.

Monarch Butterfly Conservationists Concerned by Long-Term Population Decrease

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.

Michigan could soon face a new invasive species

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.

Ludington Offshore Classic goes on with the show

With annual Ludington community events like the LudRock music festival and the Gus Macker 3-on-3 basketball tournament being canceled in wake of COVID-19, the city turned to its weeklong fishing event, the Ludington Offshore Classic, to lift some spirits. The event kicked off on July 14. The event usually is accompanied by a beer tent, food and live weigh-ins and award ceremonies for spectators and locals to enjoy. This year, that wasn’t the case, though holding the tournament itself was more of the priority. Starting it all was the first leg of the Big Boys Tournament, a two-day competition to see which crew could catch the highest weight of fish with a limit of 12 fish per day.

Potential new cormorant management plan released

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has released its proposed new plan to address double-crested cormorant conflicts and allow killing as many as 77,000 of the migratory birds in the Mississippi and Central flyways each year. In Michigan and 23 other states. The federally protected waterbird has historically created problems for shoreline communities, and critics blame them for destroying vegetation and declining fish populations in some places, such as the Les Cheneaux Islands and Mackinac County’s Brevoort Lake. A DNR expert calls the proposal a step in the right direction “even if it is not at the level of control that fisheries managers desire.” By Peter Payette & Cassidy Hough.

Book explores how lighthouses and harbors transformed the Great Lakes

Theodore Karamanski didn’t expect to be reprimanded by Gordon Lightfoot at a concert in 1976. Lightfoot, widely known for his ballad, “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald,” lectured an audience for living on the Lake Michigan shores while knowing nothing of Great Lakes history. We interview Karamanski about his new book, “Mastering the Inland Seas: How Lighthouses, Navigational Aid and Harbors Transformed the Great Lakes and America.” We also talk to a Grand Valley State historian and a scientist at the Great Lakes Environmental Research Lab in Ann Arbor. By Lucas Day.