DNR News: Yellow perch daily limit, DNR social platforms, state symbols

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News Digest - Week of Feb. 4, 2019

park interpreter leading kids on a winter hike at a state park

Here's a look at some of this week's stories from the Department of Natural Resources:

See other news releases, Showcasing the DNR stories, photos and other resources at Michigan.gov/DNRPressRoom.

PHOTO FOLDER: Larger, higher-res versions of the images used below are available in this folder.


New daily limit for yellow perch starts April 1

View from above, of several yellow perch in a bucket

If you’re planning to fish for yellow perch this spring, keep in mind that there’s a new daily possession limit – 25 fish, reduced from 50 – starting April 1 on nearly all state waters. Exceptions include:

  • Lake Erie, which will retain a 50-fish daily limit.
  • Lake Gogebic in Gogebic and Ontonagon counties, which will have the 25-fish daily limit, but with no more than five of those fish being 12 inches or longer.

The Michigan Natural Resources Commission approved the proposed fishing regulation change late last year, after extensive public and scientific reviews. The new regulation is effective with the start of the 2019 Michigan fishing season.

The DNR collected many comments from concerned anglers and others interested in reducing the daily possession limit for yellow perch. Lowering the statewide daily possession limit also supports consistent yellow perch regulations across waterbodies, particularly connecting waters, tributaries and drowned river mouths.

“The major goal for lowering the yellow perch daily possession limit was to better achieve an optimal balance between conservation and fishing opportunity, reflecting the importance and popularity of yellow perch in Michigan,” said Christian LeSage who works for the DNR’s Aquatic Species and Regulatory Affairs Unit. “Yellow perch are among the most sought-after game species in Michigan, and we want to ensure generations of anglers can continue to enjoy fishing for them.”

Starting March 1, the 2019 Michigan Fishing Guide will be available online and in printed copy form at fishing license retailers. For more information, visit Michigan.gov/DNRDigests.

Questions? Contact Christian LeSage, 517-284-5830 or Elyse Walter, 517-284-5839


DNR social channels help customers connect with outdoors

Photo of two girls looking out over the forest in Straits State Park, from Michigan DNR's instagram page

Like most organizations getting started in social media more than a decade ago, the DNR took its first step on Facebook. Some staff even remember the excitement at reaching 10,000 followers – a big milestone at the time. 

Today, the department's online presence has grown to include Instagram (24,500 followers), Twitter (35,500 followers), YouTube (5,100 subscribers) and Pinterest, with 2,000 monthly viewers. And that DNR Facebook page? It's now up over 186,000 followers!

The DNR has evolved socially from simple information posts to livestream tours of state fish hatcheries and Q&A sessions with wildlife and fish biologists and conservation officers, as well as plenty of short videos that help tell the story of outdoor recreation in Michigan.

"Our social media presence gives us a great opportunity to engage with everyone who enjoys Michigan's outdoors," said Tyler Czarnopis, the DNR's social media coordinator. "We can provide insight into the important work our staff does, help people find the answers they need, and even provide a laugh or two along the way."

The DNR's social accounts (62 in all, including dozens of individual state park Facebook pages and a state parks Instagram feed) are among the most active in state government. Czarnopis said the DNR receives over 100,000 messages a year through the department's social channels. 

"With smart devices, people are able to connect with us from wherever they are," he said. "That's a huge factor in helping someone who wants to learn more about the outdoors get the tools, information and resources they need to become someone who can confidently enjoy the outdoors."

Connect with all of the DNR's social platforms through the links above or at Michigan.gov/DNRSocial


ICYMI: Exploring Michigan's many state symbols

Frozen waters of Lake Superior in Marquette, Michigan

“The whisper of the forest tree, the thunder of the inland sea; unite in one grand symphony of Michigan, my Michigan,” – Giles Kavanagh

When it comes to the Great Lakes State, countless things make it special and memorable, and many of those  white pine, Petoskey stone, brook trout and others – have made their way into Michigan lore as official state symbols. In case you missed it, in a recent Showcasing the DNR story, deputy public information officer John Pepin wrote about the symbols' journey from inspiration to designation: 

Just like in the 1963 Elvis Presley movie of the same title, it happened at the world’s fair. But it wasn’t at Seattle’s Century 21 Exposition – where the hip-shakin’ King of Rock-n-Roll not only sang and grooved in the movie, but also starred as a pilot who flew a crop-dusting plane – it was instead in Chicago, in 1893.

That’s when and where a special “National Garland of Flowers,” crafted from flowers representing each of the then 44 U.S. states, was presented at the World’s Fair: Columbian Exposition to more than 27 million attendees.

This would foreshadow the inspiration of states, including Michigan, to eventually adopt representative symbols ranging from fish to fowl, cars to canines. ... 


THINGS TO DO

Now that last week's deep freeze has passed, it's a great time to get outdoors and enjoy some winter fun, like hiking, ice fishing and snowshoeing! Check out our winter activity calendar and get inspired. 

BUY & APPLY

Steelhead fishing, turkey hunting, Hard Water School -- all of these and plenty of other hands-on learning opportunities coming up in the next few months at the DNR's Outdoor Skills Academy. Find your class and sign up today.

GET INVOLVED

Invasive plant and animal species pose a real, serious threat to Michigan's woods and water. Would you know one if you saw it? Learn more about what to watch for (and how to report the invasive pests you do find).

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