The Fisheries Management Biologist

Michael Delp

As dam removals and restoration efforts proceed on the Boardman River, how is the fishery faring? How is Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR) measuring, controlling and supporting the fishery? What about the increasing use of the river? Do the impacts of climate change and invasive species alter management options?

These are some of the questions addressed in this video – the second in a series of discussions led by writer and fisherman, Michael Delp. A keen observer of trout and the Boardman River, Delp visits the DNR’s Traverse City Customer Service Center to gather the answers from Fisheries Management Biologist, Heather Hettinger.

Heather Hettinger

Hettinger is involved in stream, river and lake fisheries assessments, coordinating sampling programs and participating in the actual surveys. She is also involved in the planning and design of fish habitat restoration efforts and fish stocking programs.

In this conversation, Hettinger says Boardman River is in very good shape and getting even better with the removal of the dams. The fishery is good and will receive greater nutrient support after the new fish passage in downtown Traverse City is operation. A strong supporter of increasing public access and use of the Boardman River, she sees opportunities to manage that access and improve educational programs.

Watch this video for the full details.

[Details on the Boardman River Restoration Program are here. More details on the new Traverse City, Union Street Fish Pass project are available from the Great Lakes Fishery Trust.]

One thought on “The Fisheries Management Biologist

  1. Mike,

    Thanks for the informative interview. You asked good questions.

    I don’t like that she wants to “experiment” with our river but I guess there are enough people like you, Jim Olsen and Mike Coonan who will not let the DNR do that without great trepidation about the consequences. I sure how so, because people like me will not be able to stand in their way.

    I also didn’t like that she minimized the size of the Brookies in the Boardman. Many large Brooks have been caught there before and after the Brown Bridge Dam was removed. They are getting bigger by themselves and she knows it. She shocks enough to be well aware of that.

    It’s canned statements like that which are patently false that scare me the most. Obfuscating the truth is what people do when the want to slide stuff around you that they know is wrong.

    Thanks for being such a great steward of the river.

    I look forward to your participation at the BRCS.

    Norm Fred

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