Story map link: Wild and Scenic Yellow Dog River
The Creation of the Story Map: Wild and Scenic Yellow Dog River which highlights the designated wild portion of the river, has been a six- month long adventure and learning experience. It all began back in April with the receipt of a $3000.00 grant from Patagonia and River Network to facilitate its making in order to celebrate and to raise awareness of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act created in 1968 by President Lyndon B. Johnson, and also to begin a new campaign to increase the Yellow Dog River’s designation. This unique area of Michigan harbors some of the most pristine, unspoiled, and intact wilderness east of the Mississippi River; however, our waters are not without their threats. Extraction industries, new roads, and other developments continue to increase in the Yellow Dog Watershed and surrounding areas. In order to ensure that our wilderness areas remain pristine and pure, we must be ever vigilant. More…
Many changes in the law and political maneuvering may have a strong impact on the watershed via mining operations. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Interior administrators, who are politically appointed, are rolling back or blocking laws, increasing the hunt for minerals, and easing accessibility of those minerals to those who may exploit them. Read below for more information.
Every Spring and Fall we sample 18 sites along the Yellow Dog River, Salmon Trout River and their tributaries to record data on the bugs that are calling these waterways home. Some bugs can only survive in really clean water, while others can live in anything. We are very fortunate here in the UP to have a large diversity of all of our bugs. Our Fall Volunteer Stream Monitoring Program (VSMP) begins on September 29th and will run until all 18 sites are finished. Want to learn more? Visit our event page- 2015 Fall VSMP!
We have been sampling for over 10 years on the Yellow Dog and 3 years on the Salmon Trout. If water quality starts changing we have these records to prove it. All of our techniques have been learned through MiCorps. “The mission of MiCorps is to network and expand volunteer water quality monitoring organizations statewide for the purpose of collecting, sharing and using reliable data; educate and inform the public about water quality issues; and foster water resources stewardship to facilitate the preservation and protection of Michigan’s water resources.” Visit their website MiCorps for more information.
Over the years we have been blessed with the amount of hard working individuals returning each season to dedicate their time to make this program possible! Thank you to all the volunteers who have showed us support and excitement to ensure the completion of all sites! You are all amazing and we could not do everything we do without each and every one of you!!!
Big Bay residents contacted the Yellow Dog office on January 19, 2015 during the morning hours for concerns about a withdrawal or possible unregulated discharge into saturated areas adjacent to the Dam Road on the north side of Lake Independence. The residents observed a tanker truck with L & H Industrial insignia with a pump and hose in a ditch. L & H is a global mining parts manufacturing company. Residents took photos, and observed the site where green liquid had been spilled in the ditch and all over the ground. YDWP investigated further. More…
On August 4, 2014 the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) Water Resources Division issued a Violation Notice to the Marquette County Road Commission for an unlawful discharge of sediment and turbid water into a wetland ravine, tributary, and the East Branch Salmon Trout River during the creation of the haul road for Lundin Eagle Mine. The unlawful discharge was created when excavation for the new County Road AAA road corridor reached groundwater level and water began to flow out of the construction site, down slope, and into nearby waterways.
We never really decided on a name for ourselves: Thistle Exterminators, Thistle Destroyers, The Thistle Queens, to name a few. We also never really thought we would still be working on this project.
In 2009, former YDWP director, Emily Whittaker, received a grant from the National Forest Foundation to do an invasive plant survey in the McCormick National Wilderness Area where the Yellow Dog River begins and where it flows for its first several miles. To our surprise, we discovered a host of invasives: yellow and orange hawk weed, birdsfoot trefoil, knapweed, and European swamp thistles. Of all these invasives, the swamp thistle was predominant. More…