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NOAA Summer Spotlight: Salmon Ambassadors

By: Cindy Hudson
01 August 2016

Many anglers regularly measure and record their catches, but one small group of citizen scientists takes it a step further and reports their measurements so scientists and fishery managers can learn from the data. These “Salmon Ambassadors” are providing valuable information.

By looking at volunteer data from Lake Michigan and Lake Huron, biologists may be able to learn more about how stocked and wild fish contribute to catches around the lakes. Large salmon are important in bringing anglers to coastal towns, but volunteers also include measurements of released Chinook salmon that are too small for table fare. These small fish may not be very exciting to catch, but they represent the future of the fishery.

Results for 2016 are available by port and can be found at More information about the Salmon Ambassadors is available at the Michigan Sea Grant website. The program is open to Lake Michigan anglers in Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, and Indiana waters as well as Lake Huron anglers in Michigan. The program is an angler science project led by Michigan Sea Grant and Michigan State University Extension, and funded in part by Detroit Area Steelheaders.