Week of May 25, 2009





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New for travelers: www.ohare-airport.org

New Web site offers timely flight info

O’Hare Airport has launched a new Chicago O'Hare International Airport website www.ohare-airport.org offering air

travelers great timely flight information.  It provides comprehensive real time flight information on arrivals, departures and delays, terminals and maps, parking, transportation, directions, food and shopping, hotels, etc.


Weekly Great Lakes Water Levels for May 22, 2009

Weather Conditions

Pleasant weather conditions were experienced across the Great Lakes basin during much of the week.  The northern third of the region did see light rain on Tuesday and Wednesday as a weak low pressure system slowly pushed through.  Total rainfall to date in May remains below average over all of the Great Lakes basins.  The upcoming holiday weekend looks very nice, with plenty of sun and seasonable temperatures.

 Lake Level Conditions

Lake Superior is currently 2 inches above what it was at this time last year.  Lakes Michigan-Huron and St. Clair are 12 and 7 inches, respectively, higher than their levels of a year ago.  Lake Erie is 4 inches above last year's level, while Lake Ontario is 3 inches below last year's level.  Lakes Superior and Michigan-Huron are each projected to rise 3 inches during the next month.  Lake St. Clair is predicted to rise an inch during the next 30 days, while Lake Erie will fall an inch.  Lake Ontario is forecasted to decline two inches during the next month.  Over the next several months, Lake Superior is predicted to be around its level of a year ago. Lakes Michigan-Huron, St. Clair, and Erie are forecasted to remain at or above last year's levels.  Lake Ontario is forecasted to be at or below its levels of a year ago over the next six months.   

Current Outflows/Channel Conditions

In April, the outflow from Lake Superior through the St. Mary's was lower than average.  The outflows through the St. Clair and Detroit Rivers were below average as well, while the Niagara and St. Lawrence River outflows were above average. 


Lake Superior is near its chart datum elevation.  Users of the Great Lakes, connecting channels and St. Lawrence River should keep informed of current conditions before undertaking any activities that could be affected by changing water levels.  Mariners should utilize navigation charts and refer to current water level readings. 





St. Clair



Level for May 22







Datum, in ft






Diff in inches











Diff last month











Diff from last yr












FWS gives $14,000 to Carterville office for Ferson-Otter Creek Fish Passage Restoration

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced that the USFWService’s Carterville Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office in southern Illinois will receive $14,000 in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The funding will support efforts to remove or modify the Davoust and Creek Bend Forest Preserve Damns, two primary fish passage barriers in the lowermost portion of the Fox River watershed in northeast Illinois.


The Davoust Dam is a rock dam comprised of boulders which will be hand manipulated to provide passage for aquatic organisms during all stream flows. The Creek Bend Forest

Preserve Dam will be removed and bank stabilization measures will be taken.


The existing barriers in the Ferson-Otter Creek watershed presently impact movements and limit habitat availability for populations of fish and mussels. Restoration of fish passage in the lower Ferson-Otter Creek watershed will be the first step in reconnecting this system to downstream source communities, and will help to reopen the lower watershed for spawning and nursery habitat. By reconnecting previously fragmented habitat, this project will also provide benefits to the larger Fox River watershed, tributary to Green Bay in Lake Michigan.


Pontiac Lake Shooting Range Re-Opens

The Michigan DNR announced that it has re-opened the Pontiac Lake Shooting Range.  The range is located in the Pontiac Lake Recreation Area in Waterford in Oakland County.  The Pontiac Lake Shooting Range was temporarily closed to repair the 25/50 yard earthen berm.  The earthen berm is designed to stop and contain bullets fired on the range.

In addition, a new firing line roof was constructed over the shooting stations.  The new roof will help protect the shooters from the sun, rain, and snow which will make their shooting experience more enjoyable.



‘Wear It Michigan!’ Kickoff campaign

The Michigan DNR kicked off its “Wear It Michigan” campaign last week Sterling State Park on Lake Erie. The “Wear It Michigan” campaign is a partnership with the National Safe Boating Council to promote boating safety and to encourage all water sport enthusiasts to always wear a life jacket when out on the water.


 During the DNR’s “Wear It Michigan” campaign this summer, special teams of state conservation officers in a specially marked “Wear It Michigan” boat donated by Zodiac will be

asking boaters they meet on Lake Erie, Lake St. Clair and the Detroit River to take the “Wear It” Pledge. Everyone who signs a pledge card will be entered in a weekly drawing to win a manual inflatable (Type III) life jacket that will have a “Wear It” rubber logo sewn onto the life jacket.


The DNR’s report on the 2008 boating season in Michigan shows 36 fatalities in 31 fatal accidents statewide. Of those, 28 people drowned. Only two of those boaters were wearing life jackets.


Walleye bag limits revised on 255 northern lakes

MADISON – Daily walleye bag limits will increase May 22 on 255 lakes in the Wisconsin Ceded Territory to reflect spring spearing harvest by six Wisconsin bands of Chippewa Indians.


A daily bag limit of one or two walleye will increase to two or three walleye per day on 92 lakes. In addition, 163 lakes will go from an initial bag limit of one or two walleyes per day to the state daily bag limit of five, according to Joe Hennessy, who coordinates the treaty fisheries management program for the Department of Natural Resources. Anglers should consult the 2009-10 Guide to Wisconsin Hook and Line Fishing Regulations, signs at boat landings, and the 2009-2010 Revised Ceded Territory Walleye Bag Limits pamphlet for lake-specific information.


As part of a 1983 Federal Appellate Court decision affirming 

Chippewa off-reservation hunting, fishing, and gatheringrights, the six bands of Wisconsin Chippewa set annual harvest quotas for off-reservation lakes in the Wisconsin Ceded Territory. To assure the combined tribal and recreational angler harvest does not exceed a sustainable level, the state sets recreational bag limits in lakes declared for harvest by the Chippewa bands.


An administrative rule passed by the state Natural Resources Board in 1998 allows the department to adjust initial bag limits annually to reflect actual spring spearing harvests and projected summer harvests.


Of the 258 lakes with bag limits less than five, 78 lakes will have a bag limit of two walleye per day, and 180 lakes will have a daily bag of three walleye per day. The six Chippewa tribes together declared a harvest of 53,706 walleye for 2009 and had harvested 32,198 as of May 15, 2009.

Court fines City of Cleveland $10,000 for polluting Lake Michigan

MADISON – Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen announced his office has settled an environmental case with the Village of Cleveland located in Manitowoc County.  Circuit Court Judge Patrick L. Willis entered judgment in favor of the State and against the defendant Village of Cleveland in the amount of $10,000, which is comprised of forfeitures, statutory surcharges, and costs.  Judgment was entered after the Village of Cleveland agreed to a stipulated judgment.   


“Municipalities, like private actors, must follow the state’s environmental laws,” said Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen.  “We will continue to work with the Department of

Natural Resources to make sure these laws are enforced.”


In a civil complaint filed in Manitowoc County in November of 2008, the State of Wisconsin alleged that the Village of Cleveland violated their pollution discharge elimination system permit on February 21 and 22, 2007, when a release of waste activated sludge occurred from their wastewater treatment facility into an unnamed tributary of Fisher Creek.  The Complaint also alleged that the Village of Cleveland violated its permit by failing to properly operate and maintain its treatment system.  The Village of Cleveland's permit authorized it to discharge wastewater to Lake Michigan however the unscheduled release was a violation of their permit and state water pollution laws.

The opinions expressed here are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the GLSFC, its officers or staff. 

Reproduction of any material by paid-up members of the GLSFC is encouraged but appropriate credit must be given. 

Reproduction by others without written permission is prohibited.

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