Walleye reproduction in Lake Mille Lacs will be the subject of two upcoming Department of Natural Resources public presentations and discussions.
The intent of the meetings is to share biological information and answer citizen questions related to past, present and future walleye reproduction.
"We're trying to address the question whether there's a problem with walleye reproduction,'' said Tom Jones, DNR regional fisheries treaty coordinator, who will give the presentation and answer questions.
The meetings aren't intended to be wide-open affairs dealing with other Mille Lacs issues, including harvest issues, Jones said.
The presentations will be held 7-8:30 p.m. Aug. 21 in the Isle High School auditorium, 730 Fifth Ave. S., in Isle, and 6:30- 8 p.m Aug. 28 in the New Brighton Community Center, at 400 10th St. NW in New Brighton.
“We all care about Mille Lacs,” said Jones. “To that end, our goal is to create a deeper and more common understanding on the specific issue of whether there is a walleye reproduction problem.”
The DNR is calling the events Hooked on Mille Lacs: On the Road. They are intended to complement the agency’s new Hooked on Mille Lacs Lake quarterly newsletter. At these and future gatherings, local DNR fisheries biologists will give presentations on important and timely Mille Lacs topics. A facilitated group discussion on the evening’s topic will give people the chance to ask questions and make suggestions for future discussions.
"If this turns out well, there will be more of them,'' Jones said. The idea, he said, is to regularly meet with citizens to take an in-depth look at a specific issue.
“This is new. It’s different. It will allow for more public interaction than in our past meeting formats.”
Jones said the meetings are part of an emerging agency approach to more broadly communicate fish population information, research findings and rationale for management decisions.
For more information about Mille Lacs management, see www.mndnr.gov/millelacslake.