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Messages - Tory Gabriel, Ohio Sea Grant

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Lake Erie Hot Topics / Re: 2013 Hatch
« on: 10/02/13, 13:20 »
Hi Jim,

Nothing concrete from Ontario, but from all the data they have it appears the Ohio numbers are accurate.  Decent yellow perch hatch, a little below average for the walleye hatch. 

Lake Erie Hot Topics / Re: 2013 Hatch
« on: 09/06/13, 08:12 »
Preliminary numbers from Ohio are coming in, and I stress both "preliminary" and "Ohio". 

So far there is evidence of a decent yellow perch hatch, and a slightly less than average walleye hatch.  If that holds true, "slightly less than average" would be better than the past five years, aside from 2010 which was pretty much average.   

However, they are still waiting for other agency data, and then they will need to crunch the numbers.  It will be later this fall until we know the real story here. 

Lake Erie Hot Topics / Re: 2013 Hatch
« on: 08/28/13, 06:42 »
Hi Jeff,

There are no updates at this time.  Agencies are still conducting trawls, so we should have some numbers within a few weeks. 


Lake Erie Hot Topics / Re: 2013 Hatch
« on: 07/24/13, 19:51 »
Hey Fishman, I'm afraid we'll have to be more patient.  Those trawls won't be completed until later in the month, and then they will be compiled and analyzed in conjunction with Ontario's numbers, etc.  They usually don't have the numbers until later in September.  Until then we'll just have to keep our fingers crossed.  Just from trawls done at Stone Lab around the islands this summer, we've seen a decent number of young-of-year yellow perch.  That really doesn't mean anything in the grand scheme of things, but it's nice to see them versus not seeing any. 

Nothing political about news, Wakina (well, there shouldn't be anyway.)  Thanks for posting.  The GLRI money has been very helpful in accomplishing some major work on our freshwater resources.  You can see additional information on the GLRI program at the following link: Great Lakes Restoration Initiative

I suspect so as well, Rodbender.  That's the trouble with common names!

This came across my e-mail and I thought I'd share it here.  Please pass along to others who could also use it.  This video talks about zebra mussels, but the clean/drain/dry procedures are effective for many potential invaders.  One of those near to us is Hydrilla, which is gaining a substantial foothold in the Ohio River.  Please do your part to prevent the spread!

Silent Invaders- Boat Washing Video

Hello jeffryg,

Good question.  As you probably know, flooding has been helping the Asian Carps spread for years now, so it is of some concern.  There have been barrier fences places in some strategic locations specifically to guard against this:
Des Plaines River
Eagle Marsh (Wabash River)

A recent news video report on this very topic: Asian Carps Maddow Show

Unfortunately, these projects are costly and take time to plan and complete, so it's something that requires some foresight.  These areas that have the fence protections have been identified as the most likely areas of potential spread due to flooding. 

The Great Lakes Fisheries Commission's Lake Erie Committee announced today the 2013 TACs (Total Allowable Catch) for Lake Erie.

The walleye TAC is 3.356 million fish, a 4% decrease from 2012's TAC of 3.487 million fish.   Based upon water surface area in lake management units, Ohio's share will be 1.715 million walleye.  Ontario's quota will be 1.445 million walleye and 196,000 for Michigan.

The 2013 yellow perch TAC is 12.237 million pounds, an 10% decrease from the 2012 TAC. These have been divided among management units (MU) as follows:

MU 1 - 1.800 million lb
MU 2 - 4.000 million lb
MU 3 – 5.600 million lb
MU 4 - 0.837 million lb

These are the same as last year, except for the decrease in MU 3.  The figure below illustrates the yellow perch management units and how individual TAC's are shared among jurisdictions.

Note that this TAC information is now analyzed by the ODNR/Division of Wildlife, who will use it to set the Ohio bag limits and commercial quotas in the coming weeks.   

Lake Erie Hot Topics / Re: Walleye estimates
« on: 03/28/13, 06:28 »
Hi Bob,

I'm sitting at the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, Lake Erie Committee meetings right now.  The 2013 projected age 2+ walleye estimate is 17.736 million fish.  For comparison, the 2012 estimate was 22.183 million fish. 

It's not on the website yet, but the report with all the numbers and statistical details will be posted soon at

Great!  You're welcome. 

Interesting, Todd. It shows up for me.  There should be a link that you can click on and download the pdf. Maybe it's an issue with your internet browser pop-up blocker, or anti-virus software? 

Let's try this, I searched on google for "USACE public notice Sandusky Harbor" and it was the first thing to pop up on a link through the ODNR website.  That link is:

Sorry for the inconvenience, hopefully this one works for you. 

Just FYI- attached is a notice from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers regarding dredging and open lake disposal.  Directions for commenting on the project are found in the notice. 


Please see below for a message from Dr. Jeff Reutter, our Ohio Sea Grant director.  We have recently received some unfortunate news regarding our standing in the Governor’s Budget. 

If you’d like to express your feelings on this topic, the best course of action would be to contact your state legislators.  You can find contact information for them at

As always, we thank you for your support.  Feel free to share this information with others who may be interested.  Have a great weekend. 

Some additional information you may think about and share:
1) Lake Erie is socially, economically and environmentally significant to the region, the nation and the planet.
2) Lake Erie is a multi-use resource that requires restoration, wise utilization and protection for the current generation and for future generations.
3) Lake Erie is an economic, social and environmental engine for the region providing jobs and career opportunities for a vibrant sustainable future.
4) Investments in Ohio Sea Grant and Stone Lab Lake Erie education, outreach and research will empower citizens to make informed decisions that will help keep Lake Erie and the Great Lakes great!
5) Our dedicated, enthusiastic and hard-working Ohio Sea Grant and Stone Lab staff provide the university based scientific research information that will empower our local communities to grow and thrive.
6) We have the Ohio State University connections, diverse networking, and extensive collaborations necessary to tackle the numerous issues facing Lake Erie.
7) Our track record of 30 plus years of education, outreach, leadership and service to the Lake Erie community uniquely qualify Ohio Sea Grant and Stone Lab to provide Lake Erie programming to coastal clientele.
8) Ohio Sea Grant and Stone Lab’s local community based education and training developed on locally identified needs is targeted for achieving the best outcomes.
9) Ohio Sea Grant and Stone Lab have a diverse set of skilled credible educators and researchers that bring a wide set of talent and training to bear on the issues impacting the Lake Erie.
10) Individual actions can, do and will make a difference for the betterment of our great Lake Erie.

I am disappointed to report that the funding for Ohio Sea Grant and Stone Lab were zeroed out of the Governor's Budget.  I view this as a failure on my part to adequately explain to elected officials about the value and impact of the work we do.  I am attempting to correct that shortfall on my part now in the hopes that the State Legislature will restore our funding.  We have had a line item in the State Budget every year since 1983.  Our state funding peaked in 1999 at just over $300,000 per year and currently stands at $285,000 per year.  The National Sea Grant College Program is part of NOAA and the federal funding that we receive from NOAA requires of non-federal match of $1 non-federal dollar per $2 federal dollars. Therefore, the state investment in the program buys a minimum of almost $600,000 federal dollars.  We then strive to leverage these funds even further to maximize the benefit Ohio receives from the program and typically have been able to produce better than $15 per dollar invested by the state in our line item.

This state funding, while not a huge amount, is critically important to the operation and financial stability of Ohio Sea Grant and Stone Lab.  It literally provides support to everything we do from our research, education, and outreach in Ohio Sea Grant to our teaching of courses, training students,  and leading workshops, field trips, and conferences at Stone Lab.  On the 30th anniversary of our first state funding, this cut comes at a very disappointing time as the program has never been better and the benefits that we are providing to the state, region, and country have never been greater.
•   In 2012, we set a record for the number of students taking our courses at Stone Lab and the number of scientists using our research facilities to solve problems relating to nutrient loading and harmful algal blooms, invasive species, endangered species, sport fishing, and ecosystem restoration has never been higher.  Furthermore, while Sea Grant and Stone Lab are part of The Ohio State University, the students and faculty in our courses come from all over the state and country, and w have supported grants at over 20 Ohio colleges and universities.
•   The National Sea Grant College Program just completed their review of the 32 Sea Grant programs in the country (there is a Sea Grant program in every coastal state, including the Great Lakes) and Ohio Sea Grant was ranked as one of the top programs in the country far exceeding the expectations they place on us.
•   Some of our current projects are working to enhance coastal economic development to restore our economy, prevent harmful algal blooms and thereby protect human health without harming agricultural production, eliminate beach closures, enhance the impact of tourism, improve science education in our schools, improve teacher preparedness, increase coastal property values, mitigate the impacts of climate change, improve water quality, and much more.
•   In 2011 we coordinated 8 research projects involving 15 scientists form 11 universities and agencies in the US and Canada and submitted a summary report outlining steps needed to solve the harmful algal bloom problem.
•   We are currently in the process of coordinating the development of a multi-university and agency monitoring program for Lake Erie.
•   We are currently leading the state committee that is developing the nutrient loading targets for Lake Erie to solve the harmful algal bloom problem.
•   We have upgraded our research and teaching facilities at Stone Lab to accommodate the increased need for solutions to problems such as asian carp, harmful algal bloom, nutrient loading, sedimentation, invasive species, toxic substances, etc.
•   We have played and instrumental role in the cleanup of Ashtabula Harbor.
•   We are leading the Clean Marina Program and the Clean Boater Program for Ohio.
•   Our boat shrink-wrap recycling program is benefitting the environment, marinas along Lake Erie, and a business in Marrieta.
•   We continue to support work to enhance sport and charter fishing opportunities on Lake Erie, protect and restore the Lake Erie ecosystem, enhance the impact of boating on tourism on Lake Erie, and protect human health. 
•   Approximately 20,000 people per year now visit our facilities at Stone Lab.
Please don't hesitate to contact me if you need more information.


Jeffrey M. Reutter, Ph.D., Director
Ohio Sea Grant College Program
F.T. Stone Laboratory
Center for Lake Erie Area Research (CLEAR) and the
Great Lakes Aquatic Ecosystem Research Consortium (GLAERC)

The Ohio State University
Area 100 Research Center
1314 Kinnear Rd., Columbus, Ohio 43212
t: (614) 292-8949 | f: (614) 292-4364 |

Lake Erie Hot Topics / Re: Lake Erie Water Levels
« on: 02/12/13, 09:44 »
Hi Joe,

The water level on Lake Erie has both gone up, and down since the structure was built in 1957. In fact, after installed in 1957 the water levels declined and were actually lower than the installation date for almost a decade, followed by a period of above average water levels which we're on the downside of now.  This is natural variation due to environmental factors and is typical of the 30-year cycles we've seen on the Lake since the data has been recorded. You can see the trends on the attached graph since 1918, and it's very unlikely the structure had an effect on water levels.  It's really difficult to stop that much water from flowing downhill, and especially with a structure that doesn't span the entire river.

And from the International Niagara Board of Control:
"Operation of this structure does not change the total flow of the Niagara River and has no measurable effect on Lake Erie water levels."

That structure just physically can't control the levels on Lake Erie, and wasn't built to do so. 

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