Study finds health risk from Pine River fish

A recent study finds a risk that anglers in the Pine RIver may become sickened by the bacteria E. coli from agricultural runoff. Researchers are from Alma College and the University of Toronto. We hear from the Mid-Michigan District Health Department, a member of the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners and the Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy. By Kyle Davidson.

New legislation could trim property taxes on second homes

A lawmaker says owners of vacation cottages, homes and cabins Up North should get a property tax break because the state’s stay-at-home edict prevents them from using them. The bill would require the state to make up the lost local tax revenue. We talk to a Grand Rapids-area man who owns a second home in Ludington, the Association of Counties and the Mason County treasurer. By Joe Dandron.

There’s a new kind of carp in the river and it’s huge

The DNR has found the first invasive Asian grass carp able to reproduce in Michigan in the Tittabawassee River, which empties into Lake Huron. There’s concern that proliferating grass carp could decimate vegetation that other species rely on for food and habitat. The river’s watershed includes parts of Clare, Mecosta and Montcalm counties. We talk to DNR, MUCC and Trout Unlimited. For news and outdoors sections.

COVID-19 disrupts Great Lakes Research

The pandemic has disrupted field studies plans for Great Lakes scientists, including educational programs. It’s a major hit for researchers, including grad students. We talk to experts at Grand Valley, Central Michigan University and Michigan Tech universities and the NOAA lab in Ann Arbor. By Amelia Cole.

Americans agree on animal protection, experts disagree on which ones need it

A new study by researchers from Michigan Tech and other universities finds widespread support among Americans for protecting endangered species, even among political conservatives, farmers and ranchers. Fish & Wildlife Service’s interpretation of the Endangered Species Act comes under scrutiny. The debate continues over delisting the gray wolf in the Great Lakes region. By Amelia Cole.

Rooting out the impact of wild pigs

The damage that feral pigs can do to crops is well-known. So is the danger that they might transmit diseases to livestock and wildlife. But a new study by a former MSU grad student, from Tecumseh, used GPS tracking in Arenac, Bay, Gladwin and Midland counties to discover how wild pigs damage endangered plants. The Michigan Nature Association, based in Okemos, explains its concerns about protecting rare plants at its 180 sanctuaries. By Kurt Williams.

Fish tale: ‘Very good’ chance of Arctic grayling’s return

The grayling disappeared from Michigan in the 1930s but efforts are underway to restore the species and protect it from predators like trout and salmon species. The initiative by DNR and the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians has dozens of supporting agencies, tribes, universities and groups. We also talk to the Conservation Resource Alliance. By Lucas Day.