The Department of Natural Resources, in partnership with the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians, announced a proposed initiative in June 2016 that aims to bring back an extirpated species to the state – Arctic grayling.  The Michigan Arctic Grayling Initiative seeks to establish self-sustaining populations of this species throughout its historical range in Michigan. The initiative has more than 45 partners collaborating on the reintroduction.

The next steps include identifying interest and abilities of partners, collecting baseline data, initiating the building of broodstock and stocking efforts. The Manistee River watershed, once known as a premier grayling river, will be the first location for reintroduction.

The DNR will work closely with partners as the proposed Michigan Arctic Grayling Initiative moves forward. The Little River Band, located in Manistee County, has been engaged in extensive research for potential grayling reintroduction for several years.

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ACTION PLAN: FOCUS AREAS

Understanding the historical significance and cultural importance of Grayling in Michigan, and drawing upon the work already accomplished by collaborators, more than 30 organizations and agencies met in August 2016 to consider Grayling reintroduction and rehabilitation. Many ideas, questions, and information gaps regarding the reintroduction effort were recognized at the inaugural meeting, and a follow up meeting in December 2016 materialized in an Action Plan that includes four focus areas: Research, Management, Fish Production, and Outreach and Education