PAGE 1 MAZINA’IGAN FALL 2017 Published by the Great Lakes Indian Fish & Wildlife Commission FALL 2017 Survival of young walleye in Mille Lacs Lake By GLIFWC Inland Fisheries Section The number of adult walleye in a population depends heavily on the production and survival of young walleye (fish younger than two years of age). Survival from egg deposition to age-1 is approximately 0.01%, with mortality occurring at multiple life stages. For example, a proportion of eggs might not be fertilized during spawning, eggs might not hatch, or age-0 fish (fish less than one year old) might die from starvation, competition, or predation. Environmental conditions can also dictate survival of these early life stages, with water temperature likely being the most important factor. Given the number of factors that can influence the survival of young walleye, it comes as no surprise that survival to age-1 can vary considerably from year-to-year. Every fall since 1999, GLIFWC, Fond du LacTribe, and Minnesota Department of Natural Resources have conducted electrofishing surveys of age-0 and age-1 walleye on Mille Lacs Lake (Photo 1). During these surveys, biologists count and measure both age groups of fish (Photo 2). From these data, we are able to calculate the number of fish in each age group per mile of shoreline sampled each fall, and the relative survival of young walleye over time. To calculate relative survival, we divide the number of age-1 walleye by the number of age-0 walleye captured the previous year. These calculations result in a wide range of values, where a value closer to 1.0 represents greater survival of a year class. By analyzing these data, we hope to gain some insight into why the current adult walleye biomass (~890,000 pounds)islessthan50%ofthebiomassin1999(over2.4mil- lion pounds; see Mazina’igan Summer 2017 p. 4 for details). Relative survival of age-0 walleye to age-1 has gone through a boom and bust cycle from 1999 to 2015. In 2003, GLIFWC biologists capture young walleye in Mille Lacs Lake. (J. Curtis-Quick photo) (see Survival, page 15) Stories from Gabeshiwin: Sharing culture & connections By Dylan Jennings & Paula Maday Staff Writers Gabeshiwin has been a popular word in Ojibwe Country in recent years. Cultural camps hosted by tribes and other organizations have been a huge success and major contribu- tor in the revitalization of language and traditional harvesting practices. Camps throughout the Ceded Territories have been providingcommunitiestheopportunitytobothlearnandspeak Ojibwemowin, and to relearn traditional practices such as net mending, basketry, and archery. RedClifftribalelderMarvinDefoechuckledashebegan to talk about camps in Red Cliff and the surrounding area. “Our ancestors probably would have found it ridiculous that we have to do these camps in order to practice some of these traditions. But considering everything we have been through, it’s a huge benefit to our communities to teach and relearn our way of life through these gatherings.” Defoe is right. There is a deep and ironic history to con- sider. The 1800s are commonly characterized as a treaty era, in which tribes and the U.S. government continually entered into binding agreements. Simultaneously, however, the U.S. government outlawed many Native American ceremonies and religious practices. By entering into the treaties, the United States acknowl- edged the inherently sovereign status of the tribes, yet denied them their first amendment right of free exercise of religion. Arguably, some of the first spiritual ceremonies practiced in the United States, somehow became illegal. The American Indian Religious Freedom Act didn’t become law until 1978. It was passed to help protect and preserve the very way of life that had been threatened for so long. Chuck Mitchell assists Martin Evaristo with proper gun handling at the Town of Russell shooting range. Evaristo was part of a group that came from California to learn more about Ojibwe culture at Red Cliff Wolf Camp June 13-16. (A. Plucinski photo) (See Sharing culture, page 23) Hunting Season arrives in the Ceded Territory September 5 opener Minnesota 1837 Michigan (LVD) 1842 Wisconsin 1837 & 42 Waawaashkeshi. Mizise. John R. Ford, gameandfishmag.com