As climate change alters lakes, tribes and conservationists fight for the future of spearfishing

by | Jul 9, 2024 | Science

HAYWARD, Wis. (AP) — Chilly nights on northern Wisconsin’s Chippewa Flowage don’t deter 15-year-old spearfisher Gabe Bisonette. He’s been learning the Ojibwe practice for so long now that when his headlamp illuminates the eye-shine of his quarry, he can communicate the sighting to his dad with hardly a word.Pronged spear at the ready, Gabe thrusts the pole down and strikes the rippling water. He scoops the pole through the air in a practiced motion — the hardest part, he says, is keeping the walleye on the spear as it wriggles — then slides the catch into the boat with a thunk.Ojibwe and other Indigenous people are fighting to keep this way of life vibrant. As a result of warming waters, increasingly variable seasonal changes and lakeshore development, walleye numbers in some lakes are dwindling. Losing the species would mean losing a food source for community members, a sovereign right to fish, and a deep connection to tradition and nature. Many are optimistic that with the help of science and proper management, they will be able to continue this tradition in the future, but there’s also concern about the changes already happening.“We’ve seen things here over the last couple of years that I’ve never seen bef …

Article Attribution | Read More at Article Source

[mwai_chat context=”Let’s have a discussion about this article:nnHAYWARD, Wis. (AP) — Chilly nights on northern Wisconsin’s Chippewa Flowage don’t deter 15-year-old spearfisher Gabe Bisonette. He’s been learning the Ojibwe practice for so long now that when his headlamp illuminates the eye-shine of his quarry, he can communicate the sighting to his dad with hardly a word.Pronged spear at the ready, Gabe thrusts the pole down and strikes the rippling water. He scoops the pole through the air in a practiced motion — the hardest part, he says, is keeping the walleye on the spear as it wriggles — then slides the catch into the boat with a thunk.Ojibwe and other Indigenous people are fighting to keep this way of life vibrant. As a result of warming waters, increasingly variable seasonal changes and lakeshore development, walleye numbers in some lakes are dwindling. Losing the species would mean losing a food source for community members, a sovereign right to fish, and a deep connection to tradition and nature. Many are optimistic that with the help of science and proper management, they will be able to continue this tradition in the future, but there’s also concern about the changes already happening.“We’ve seen things here over the last couple of years that I’ve never seen bef …nnDiscussion:nn” ai_name=”RocketNews AI: ” start_sentence=”Can I tell you more about this article?” text_input_placeholder=”Type ‘Yes'”]
Share This