Saturday, November 26, 2022

3,000 trout released into Red Cedar River

April 15, 2013
	<p>Graduate student Brandon Armstrong prepares to fish in the newly stocked Red Cedar River on Monday on the west side of campus. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources released more than 3,000 fish into the river. Natalie Kolb/The State News</p>

Graduate student Brandon Armstrong prepares to fish in the newly stocked Red Cedar River on Monday on the west side of campus. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources released more than 3,000 fish into the river. Natalie Kolb/The State News

Photo by Natalie Kolb | The State News

It was an unusual gathering over the river — students, administrators, faculty and fishermen from the community assembled around a brightly painted truck on a bridge spanning the Red Cedar River.

After a few brief remarks were made to the crowd, 3,000 steelhead trout began to fly into the river.

The gathering celebrated an ordinance passed by the MSU Board of Trustees in December. For the next three years, hook-and-line fishing will be permitted along a select portion of the north bank of the river.

Trustee Dianne Byrum explained the decision to the crowd.

“The entire Red Cedar on campus was a sanctuary and hasn’t been open for fishing since the 1960s,” Byrum said. “As a trustee, I took it to the policy committee. And in December, we opened up this section of the Red Cedar River for fishing, not only for opportunities for students and faculty, but for local citizens.”

The steelhead, a variety of rainbow trout raised in captivity, were brought to campus in a specialized fish stocking transportation vehicle, a large transport resembling a fire truck.

They were raised at the Wolf Lake State Fish Hatchery, in Mattawan, Mich.

The event was organized in cooperation with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, or DNR.

After their release, the steelhead will head down Red Cedar River toward Lake Michigan. They will swim back up the river during their spawning season.

DNR Director Keith Creagh explained the numbers before introducing the fish to the river.

“These are 3,000 of the 19 million fish we plant around the state,” Creagh said. “And with that, let’s see if we can stock some fish!”

Twenty distinguished guests, including Byrum and Creagh, as well as Sparty, each dumped a ceremonial bucket of steelhead into the river.

DNR workers then attached a large pipe to the side of the truck, which began to spew fish and freshwater into the river.

Elyse Walter, a communication specialist with the Fisheries Division of the DNR, was enthusiastic about the new fishing opportunity.

“It’s very exciting for anyone who is an avid angler,” Walter said. “The department rears fish across the state of Michigan. In the spring, we stock them in public waters to enhance fishing opportunities. They are a very popular sport fish.”

MSU Bass Fishing Team member Josh Boucher, a mechanical engineering sophomore, was very excited about the development.

“An opportunity to fish on my campus — that’s awesome, not many schools can say that,” Boucher said. “If you walk right from class down to the river — a great opportunity, a great fishery for some awesome steelhead.”

Boucher has noted the fishing opportunities in the Red Cedar before, and now he can make use of them.

“There’s so many coho (salmon) in the fall. I’ve been walking down by the bridge before and seen them swimming through,” he said. “It’ll be cool to fish
for them.”

Support student media! Please consider donating to The State News and help fund the future of journalism.

Discussion

Share and discuss “3,000 trout released into Red Cedar River” on social media.