About the Project

Mnomen (wild rice) populations have declined in local lakes due to changes in hydrology, herbicide use and boat traffic. Environmental staff are working to restore mnomen in Southwest Michigan to levels that would allow for sustainable harvest. The Gun Lake Tribe has been working on restoration efforts since 2013 and have verified existing mnomen beds throughout the region. Staff have begun to monitor these beds to track overall trends within these beds which will lead to a better understanding and long-term protection of mnomen. During the annual mnomen harvest, staff collect seed for restoration efforts to restore mnomen beds locally. In addition, staff are exploring seeding methods and monitoring tactics to determine the best possible procedures to restore local lakes and streams. Through the mnomen project, staff work to:  

  1. Survey waterbodies to locate, monitor and map mnomen 
  2. Manage outcompeting vegetation and animals at and near mnomen beds 
  3. Harvest and sow healthy mnomen beds for restoration of local waterbodies 
  4. Assess genetic variability of local remnant beds, restoration beds and seed sources 
  5. Develop mnomen regulations 
  6. Engage the community in mnomen restoration