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Trout in Cook County and the BWCA feeling the heat in 2021

A lake trout caught in the BWCA. Photo by Lukas Leaf
A lake trout caught in the BWCA. Photo by Lukas Leaf

Smoke from wildfires and warm temperatures from Lake Superior to the end of the Gunflint Trail continue to dominate the news cycle in the WTIP listening area this summer.

At the same time, a changing climate continues to impact a variety of fish and wildlife management strategies in northern Minnesota. Trout species in particular are impacted by a warming climate and changes to water temperature, a fact many state fisheries biologists keep in mind while making long-term plans.

As lakes and ecosystems adapt to a changing climate it’s possible that some Cook County lakes that were previously stocked with trout might not be in future, according to local and regional fisheries biologists.

WTIP’s Joe Friedrichs checked in with Steve Persons, the Grand Marais area fisheries biologist for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, to learn how the summer of 2021 is impacting the trout populations in area lakes. The audio to their conversation is shared below.

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