About the Project

Nmé (lake sturgeon) rehabilitation is a critical effort for the Tribe, as the Kalamazoo River and Grand River nmé populations are in danger of falling below the minimum viable population level.  Minimum viable population has been estimated at 80 individuals by the State of Michigan. The MDNR estimated the Kalamazoo River nmé population at 88 fish and the Grand River population at 103 individuals (Hayes and Caroffino 2012). These populations are well below the recommended population size of at least 750 mature adults (Welsh et al. 2010).  

The Tribe’s rehabilitation efforts works towards the ultimate goal of rehabilitation of the Kalamazoo River nmé to a self-sustaining population. The Tribe will continue to increase its capacity to coordinate and lead the Kalamazoo River and Grand River nmé rehabilitation. The Tribe is actively working on four main objectives which support the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, Focus Area 4, Habitats and Species: Great Lakes Tribal Species Protection and Restoration. The project will maintain, restore and enhance populations of native species, promoting a population of GLRI-targeted native non-threatened and non-endangered species self-sustaining in the wild.

  1. Monitor the Kalamazoo River and Grand River nmé population  
  2. Identify and map critical habitat for different life stages of nmé  
  3. Analyze the genetics of the nmé populations 
  4. Operate the nmé rearing facility