Gun Lake Tribe to Release Lake Sturgeon into Kalamazoo River

Written by: Sarah Donnelly

Primary Source : Turtle Talk, August 19, 2016.

Turtle Talk | Indigenous Law and Policy Center Blog Michigan State University College of Law

WHO: Gun Lake Tribe of Pottawatomi Indians; Michigan Department of Natural Resources; U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service; Kalamazoo River Chapter of Sturgeon for Tomorrow.

WHAT: Public celebration / release of juvenile sturgeon into the Kalamazoo River.

WHEN: Monday, August 29, 2016 from 6 pm to 8 pm.

WHERE: New Richmond Bridge County Park, 5700 Old Allegan Road, Hamilton, Mich.  Google Maps click here                            

DETAILS: The Gun Lake Tribe has organized an annual release of lake sturgeon into the Kalamazoo River.  Participating parties include the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, U.S. Fish & Wildlife, and the Kalamazoo River chapter of Sturgeon for Tomorrow.  The 8-inch sturgeon set for release were reared in a streamside hatchery and will be hand-released back into the river.

Sturgeon, or Nmé in Pottawatomi, is culturally important to the Tribe as the fish represents an animal clan in traditional beliefs.  Sturgeon clan people have spiritual knowledge offered as guidance to others and they live to an old age, just like lake sturgeon.  The rehabilitation of lake sturgeon is a reflection of the Tribe’s present-day progression as a community and a tribal government.

A welcome will be provided by Chairperson Leah Sprague-Fodor.  Tribal youth drum group, ThunderBuddies, will perform.  Also taking part in the ceremony are tribal elders John Bush, Punkin and Dave Shananaquet, and Miss Potawatomi Mary Bush.  The event will also include hatchery tours and light dinner for up to 200 people in attendance.  The general public is encouraged to attend this event.

CONTACT: Elizabeth Binoniemi-Smith (269) 397-1780 (office), (616) 885-2155 (on-site)

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Sarah Donnelly
Sarah Maev Donnelly is the Program Coordinator for the Indigenous Law & Policy Center at Michigan State University’s College of Law. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Biology from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville before completing her Juris Doctor at Michigan State with a certificate in Indigenous Law.