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Song of The Morning at it again

Discussion in 'Outdoor News' started by PRSF, Jun 26, 2008.

  1. PRSF

    PRSF Guest

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    tv7-4.com

    Releasing sediment into the Pigeon River again!!! Killing fish


    Sediments pollute Pigeon River

    Dam released large amount of sediments

    Posted: Wednesday, June 25, 2008 at 6:13 p.m.
    PIGEON RIVER STATE FOREST -- Officials are keeping a close eye on the Pigeon River after fish have begun to pop up dead. Crews from the Department of Natural Resources and the Department of Environmental Quality spent Wednesday assessing water flow and the fish population. The DNR began to receive calls earlier this week about the changes occurring in the river.
    “Monday we became aware of some flow irregularities on the Pigeon River,” said David Brogeson, a fisheries supervisor with the DNR. “There was a spike in flow and then a deep decline in the flow.” It’s believed an upstream dam on private property was fully opened allowing the release of a large amount of sediments. Those sediments then clouded the water and reduced the level of oxygen in the water. “In the impoundment there's an accumulation of sediment that's accumulated over years and to have a lot of that released over a short amount of time, that causes problem for the stream,” Brogeson said.
    There is not believed to be any risk to human health. Brogeson says the DNR and the DEQ will continue to monitor the river to determine the impact this will have on the river’s fish population.
     
  2. Hamilton Reef

    Hamilton Reef

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    Fish kill must prompt FERC to act against private dams

    VANDERBILT -- Silt from a dam on the Song of the Morning Yoga Center has caused a significant fish kill on the Pigeon River, one of Michigan's premier trout streams. Larry Walters, a Vanderbilt resident and president of the Headwaters Chapter of Trout Unlimited, said the incident was reminiscent of another major fish kill caused by sediment from the retreat 25 years ago.

    Fisheries biologists from the Department of Natural Resources were at the stream Tuesday and Wednesday trying to assess the extent of the fish kill, which began Sunday.

    http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080626/SPORTS10/806260394/1058
     

  3. PRSF

    PRSF Guest

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    I hope they stick it right to them!!!! The DNR seems more concerned about horseback riding and snowmobiling in the Pigeon.
     
  4. Hamilton Reef

    Hamilton Reef

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    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    June 26, 2008

    CONTACT: Bob Gwizdz 517-373-3542

    DNR Investigates Fish Kill on Pigeon River

    A discharge from a private dam on the Pigeon River near Vanderbilt was responsible for a potentially significant fish kill downstream, Department of Natural Resources fisheries officials said today.

    The discharge, which began Sunday night, flushed sediment from above the dam that is located on the property of Song of the Morning Ranch near Sturgeon Valley Road in Otsego County. The fish were killed either by the sediment or thermal shock, said DNR fisheries biologist Dave Borgeson.

    Fish of numerous species, including brown trout up to 19 inches, were found dead, Borgeson said. Electro-fishing by DNR personnel failed to produce enough live fish to make a population assessment in the water for about two miles downstream from the dam.

    "We will be going farther downstream Thursday to see how far the fish kill extends," Borgeson said. "During our initial sampling we are not finding the numbers of trout we knew were there prior to the incident. These populations fluctuate, but they are never this low."

    Borgeson added there's a stretch of the river that is almost devoid of trout.

    A major fish kill involving the same dam occurred in July 1984, when tons of silt swept down the river after the dam gates were opened for repairs.

    Since that time, repeated requests by the DNR that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission regulate the dam have been denied by the federal
    agency.

    Officials from the Department of Environmental Quality's dam safety division also are investigating the incident.

    The DNR is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state's natural resources for current and future generations.
     
  5. Hamilton Reef

    Hamilton Reef

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    Pigeon River dam spill kills trout
    Dam is privately-owned

    State environmental officials will try to gauge damage done to the Pigeon River fishery, one of the state's best-known trout streams and a designated natural river.

    Crews of DNR fishery experts waded through the downstream stretches of the river this week where they shocked the water with electricity to net and count living fish. They mostly found dead trout.

    "It's a devastating fish loss," said Andy Nuhfer, of the DNR fisheries division. "We found very few living trout. Mostly brook trout. No rainbows. No browns."

    http://www.record-eagle.com/local/local_story_179100141.html
     
  6. Hamilton Reef

    Hamilton Reef

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    Surveying damage after dam mistake kills brown trout

    VANDERBILT -- The smell of rotting fish could take the bark off trees. And to biologists Andrew Nuhfer and Tim Cwalinski, the sight of dozens of brown trout from 16 to 20 inches was infuriating and disheartening.
    Several miles of the Pigeon River were decimated last week because someone at the Song of the Morning Ranch, a yoga center, apparently screwed up when opening a gate on a private hydroelectric dam and released tons of soft black silt.

    The result for thousands of trout and prey fish and countless numbers of crayfish, mayfly larvae and other aquatic creatures was the same as for humans who try to breathe dense smoke -- suffocation.

    http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080629/SPORTS10/806290623/1058
     
  7. P.R.S.F.

    P.R.S.F.

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    Any more news on what is going on?
     
  8. Hamilton Reef

    Hamilton Reef

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    Pollution from dam is still a concern

    http://www.record-eagle.com/local/local_story_185095549.html

    07/03/08 BY SHERI McWHIRTER smcwhirter@record-eagle.com

    VANDERBILT -- The Pigeon River still doesn't run clear, nearly two weeks after a large sediment release from a private dam rushed downstream and decimated the blue-ribbon trout fishery.

    State environmental officials are trying to gauge damage done to the river and its inhabitants after a dam in the Pigeon River Country State Forest opened June 22 and released a large amount of silt.

    The investigation isn't finished, but may result in criminal charges or sanctions against the dam operators, as well as fines and restitution to the state, officials said.

    "This is an absolute catastrophe. This has killed the river," said John Walters, president of the Headwaters Chapter of Trout Unlimited.

    Sediment killed fish either by thermal shock or clogged gills. Some stretches of the river are devoid of trout and those fish that did survive aren't out of danger yet.

    Suspended silt in the water above and below the dam continues to choke the river for miles downstream, Walters said.

    Fishery experts with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources checked for living trout and signs that the fish moved down river or into tributaries to escape harm.

    The signs aren't good, said Dave Borgeson, DNR fishery supervisor.

    "The trout population is far lower than what we'd expect. We know there was a significant fish kill," he said.

    Officials with the state Department of Environmental Quality are investigating whether the sediment flush was caused by a mechanical problem at the dam or human error, which will help determine whether criminal charges will be pursued, said Bob McCann, agency spokesman.

    Potential water quality and dam safety violations also are under review, he said.

    "It's disheartening to see this happen because it's a very ecologically rich watershed," McCann said.

    Fishing regulations on the Pigeon won't change because of the incident, although anglers are not expected in some spots until the trout recover, Borgeson said.

    Some anglers and conservationists want the dam removed, especially with its history of a similar sediment release and fish kill there in 1984, both Walters and Borgeson said.

    Ian Wylie, manager at the Song of the Morning Ranch yoga retreat, which owns the dam, could not be reached for comment. He previously declined to discuss details of the incident.
     
  9. Hamilton Reef

    Hamilton Reef

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    Now after the initial series of damage articles run the course, we will have to sit back and let the system work out the legal, criminal, mitigation, complexities, and future direction of the dam and Pigeon River watershed. This is a perfect time to force the Song of the Morning Ranch camp owners to completely remove the dam as a planned organized slow drawdown combined with a major stream side bank and fishery habitat restoration projects, fish stocking, and make sure it is all paid for by the Song of the Morning Ranch.
     
  10. astockyj

    astockyj

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    The SOMR is a bunch of idiots, we shouldn't let them have control over the dam at all, obviously it wasn't learned from the last time this happened. I've been fishing the river almost all my life, my father and grandfather have fished the river years before I was born. Several other family members have fished it too for several years. This breaks are hearts to see this happen again. The river has been doing so much better in recent years too that this will put a huge damper on things for many years to come. Very disappointing and disheartening. I hope there are severe consequences for those responsible for causing this to happen. Pretty sad too when the DNR has been petitioning for years to get something done about this and another gov't agency won't do anything about it. What a crock, wonder whose lining their pockets (maybe the oil company)? I am sure there are some political blunders and BS going on as well that ties the hands of those that are trying to conserve this wonderful river and surrounding area.
     
  11. P.R.S.F.

    P.R.S.F.

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    On a bright note if you want to call it that. I went down to the river yesterday and the water is cleared up and you can actually see the bottom.
     
  12. Hamilton Reef

    Hamilton Reef

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    Don't worry, DNR probing dam mess

    As expected, some of the e-mailers were anglers angered by the damage to their sport. But a surprising number were people who emphasized that they weren't anglers but were still furious about the environmental damage, especially because it was the third such incident caused by this dam in 50 years.

    Time after time, people said they wanted to make sure that the Department of Natural Resources and Department of Environmental Quality got one very clear message -- "The people who caused this damage have to pay for it. And once the river is restored, that dam has to go."

    http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080713/SPORTS10/807130590/1058
     
  13. Linda G.

    Linda G.

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    I believe the SOTMR is considered a church, therefore, as in 84 and in their first problem, back whenever that was, I'm not sure, I'm not sure they can be prosecuted for this.
     
  14. Ranger Ray

    Ranger Ray Smells like, Victory! Premium Member

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    Lets wait tell we restore the river then take the dam out releasing more sediment.:dizzy: Might as well do it now, the damage is done.
     
  15. Hamilton Reef

    Hamilton Reef

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    Go get some education on how to remove dams.