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LUTSEN, Minn. -- A nasty, cold-water algae nicknamed “rock snot” has been confirmed in the Poplar River near Lutsen along the North Shore of Lake Superior, the first such finding in a Minnesota trout stream. The freshwater algae, officially called didymo, lives in low-nutrient, low-temperature environments that are common in North Shore streams and Lake Superior, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources reported Thursday, Oct. 25.
CHIPPEWA NATIONAL FOREST — Jens Heig first checked the tail and rump feathers of the smallish grouse, then checked the edges of the wing feathers. It was a juvenile bird, he concluded, a female. Then he dug into the crop, just to see what the bird had been feeding on (wild strawberry leaves) before digging into his backpack for a field test kit that looks a bit like something from CSI Northwoods.
1902 - The U.S. General Land Office sets aside 500,000 acres in what would become the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, keeping it undeveloped by removing it from settlement acreage being offered to homesteaders. 1904 - Congress grants 20,000 acres to the state for the Burntside Forest Reserve. Minnesota forestry officials declare "State Forest Reserves should be devoted not alone to the business of raising timber, but to the pleasure of all the people."
DULUTH — It passed the U.S. Senate in the last minutes of the last day of a Congressional session that may have been its last chance to pass. Democrats were in power in Minnesota and in Washington, and several Minnesotans were in President Jimmy Carter's administration when the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness Act passed Congress on Oct. 15, 1978. That included Vice President Walter Mondale and Secretary of Agriculture Bob Bergland, whose department oversaw the U.S. Forest Service that managed what was then the BWCA.
WASHINGTON, D.C.—Projects to bolster conservation efforts for Minnesota loons will get a huge boost under a settlement agreement announced Tuesday, Oct. 9, stemming from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The agreement, published Tuesday in the Federal Register, sets aside $16 million from BP, the oil rig's owner, for fish and wildlife rehabilitation for species impacted by the explosion, fire and spill that killed 11 people, injured 17 others and sent millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf.
DULUTH—On the same day an international panel of climate experts predicted dire consequences if human-caused global warming continues unabated, scientists at the University of Minnesota added northern forests to the list of potential victims. Scientists looked at 11 species of trees growing in two northern Minnesota forests and said predicted temperatures will cause drier soils and reduce tree growth as temperatures warm.
Wolf supporters moved Wednesday, Sept. 19, to force the federal government to develop a broader recovery plan for wolves across more of the U.S., even as the Trump administration and other groups are trying to remove federal protections for the big predators. The Center for Biological Diversity on Wednesday filed a notice of intent to sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for violating the Endangered Species Act by never developing a comprehensive recovery plan for gray wolves nationwide. The notice is a legal heads-up that a lawsuit is coming in 60 days.
DULUTH — What a difference a few mild winters and a lot more doe permits can make. Minnesota Department of Natural Resources area deer meetings, held at wildlife offices across the state in recent weeks, attracted surprisingly few hunters — some meetings went unattended and the most heavily attended attracted just 14 people. Across northeastern Minnesota, Tower and Grand Rapids attracted eight people each with only five in Two Harbors and just two in International Falls. And not a one of them brought pitchforks and torches.
LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH — Forgive Gerry Albert if he gets a little excited when he catches walleyes here. "Here's another one!'' Albert shouted as he set the hook on a walleye, working to keep a tight line and run his outboard in whitecaps. "Ohhh, and I think it's a keeper!" Big Winnie is Albert's lake, so to speak. He's the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources' large lakes fisheries specialist for the huge reservoir — 67,000 acres, 88 square miles — northwest of Deer River.
DULUTH — If you're hoping for a campsite at Gooseberry Falls State Park over Memorial Day weekend, you're probably out of luck. Same for Jay Cooke, Split Rock, Tettegouche and most of the region's other most popular state park campgrounds — they're 100 percent booked for the three-day, unofficial opening of the summer camping season. But if you're willing to drive a little and maybe try some new locations, there are still available campsites in the state park system for the upcoming long weekend.