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US Fish & Wildlife Service FieldNotes

The Great Lakes Fish Tag and Recovery Lab Concludes the 2012 Lake Trout Tagging Season

Region 3, December 3, 2012

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Great Lakes Fish Tag and Recovery Lab concluded the 2012 lake trout tagging season on October 4th. This is the third consecutive year that the lab has tagged and marked all hatchery-reared lake trout to be released in lakes Michigan, Huron, Erie and Ontario. Using an automated fish tagging trailer that simultaneously clips the adipose fin and injects a coded wire tag, the team tagged and marked over six million lake trout at five different federal and state hatchery hatcheries in Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania.


Tagging began on July 9th at the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Marquette State Fish Hatchery where 307,977 lake trout were tagged over five days. These fish will be stocked into Lake Huron and Lake Michigan in the spring of 2013.

In August, the team began multiple tagging projects at three Service hatcheries. At Pendills Creek National Fish Hatchery near Brimley, Michigan, 1,043,453 fish were tagged and marked during August 7-14. During August 13 - October 3, 2,250,964 lake trout were tagged and marked at Jordan River National Fish Hatchery near Elmira, Michigan. All the fish reared at Pendills Creek and Jordan River will be stocked into either Lake Michigan or Lake Huron. Hatchery raised lake trout heading for lakes Ontario and Erie are now reared at the recently renovated Allegheny National Fish Hatchery near Warren, PA. About 898,715 fish were tagged and marked there this year from August 18 - September 10.

The final project of the season started on September 18 at the Iron River hatchery near Iron River, WI. Almost 1.6 million fish bound for Lakes Michigan and Huron were tagged and marked at Iron River.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Great Lakes Fish Tag and Recovery Lab is headquartered at the Green Bay Fish and Wildife Conservation Office. As well as delivering tagging and marking services to state and federal fish hatcheries throughout the Great Lakes, the lab also provides coded wire tag recovery assistance and processing of tagged fish recovered from assessment and sport fisheries.

Contact Info: Larry Dean, 612-713-5312, Larry_Dean@fws.gov