Surplus salmon available to public again this fall

The public is again this year invited to purchase surplus salmon from a limited number of retailers in the northern Lower Peninsula. These fish have been harvested by the Department of Natural Resources at weirs located in the same area. 

Seasonal salmon runs include large numbers of fish returning to their native streams to spawn and die. The DNR maintains multiple sites (weirs) where fisheries biologists and technicians collect eggs and milt (sperm) from Chinook and coho salmon for use in state fish hatcheries. Once egg-take needs are met, fish in prime physical condition are made available to the public by American-Canadian Fisheries (ACF), a private vendor which assists the DNR with the salmon harvest.

ACF harvests the salmon for human and pet-food markets, as well as excess eggs for bait and caviar markets. ACF pays the DNR a flat per-pound rate for the salmon and eggs collected. They then make suitable-quality fish available wholesale to distributors who market the fish. This year’s distributors are all located in the northern Lower Peninsula. 

The price of the available fish is set by each individual retailer, not the DNR. It is recommended you contact the respective vendors (listed below) directly to determine when you can make a purchase and for how much.

Here is the list of Michigan retailers this year selling salmon harvested at DNR weirs:

  • Andy’s Tackle Box
    14573 Coates Hwy.
    Brethren, MI 49619
    231-477-5737
  • Lixie’s Fish Market
    2699 Lixie Beach
    East Tawas, MI 48060
    989-362-5791
  • R & J Resort
    3070 Keith Rd.
    Brethren, MI 49619
    231-301-4977
  • Tippy Dam Campground
    17974 Old House Rd.
    Wellston, MI 49689
    231-848-4448
  • Wellman’s Bait & Tackle
    410 S. State St. #309
    Oscoda, MI 48750
    989-739-2869