With a new year and new headlines, we bring you the first News to Us of 2021. Read and click below for more on the arctic grayling’s reintroduction to Michigan waters, a fascinating study on the color of America’s rivers, tips on winter recreation safety, and best practices to mitigate road salt damage to plants.

Great Lakes Restoration Initiative funding hikes guaranteed through 2026

With the President signing the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Act into law on January 4th, hundreds of millions of dollars in funding for Great Lakes protection has been secured through 2026. The bipartisan law increases annual Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) funds incrementally over the next five years to $475 million. Since launching in 2010, GLRI has been instrumental in accelerating efforts to protect and restore the Great Lakes and its watersheds, including the Huron River. HRWC’s Whole Farms for Clean Water project is thanks to GLRI funds.

A once-bountiful fish was wiped out of Michigan. Now, researchers think they can bring it back.

Michigan natural resources managers are poised to reintroduce the arctic grayling back into Michigan waters. Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

Michigan tribal, state, and university natural resources managers are aiming to reintroduce the arctic grayling (right), a fish species once dominant in northern Michigan rivers and streams. In the early 1900s, overfishing, competition, and habitat destruction exterminated the fish from the state. All subsequent arctic grayling reintroduction efforts have failed. New insights from Montana State University leave Michigan’s natural resources managers hopeful of future reintroduction success.

One-third of America’s rivers have changed color since 1984
A new study from the University of Pittsburgh assesses the color of rivers segments in the United States. The study used satellite images since 1984 to assess changes in river color over the past few decades. Most river miles were yellow, indicating the presence of suspended solids and soils within the water. Meanwhile, only 5% of U.S. river miles were considered blue.

Keep safety in mind when enjoying winter outdoor recreation activities
With the winter recreation season in full swing, keep safety in mind. This article from the Upper Peninsula’s Iron County Reporter outlines tips to keep in mind when snowmobiling, ice fishing or enjoying other outdoor winter activities.

How to protect trees, plants from rock salt during winter
Salt applied to roads and sidewalks can not only lead to aquatic habitat impairments but also harm plants and trees. This clip from CBS 58 in Milwaukee discusses the effects of salts on plants as well as strategies to mitigate harm to plants.