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'No respector of persons' - Michigan's fight against tuberculosis

Archivists at the Michigan History Center, while processing government records, often uncover fascinating stories from our state’s past. This article chronicles the state’s response to the tuberculosis public health crisis in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

Self-care Saturday is a walk in the park

The buzzwordy idea of “self-care” evokes images of bubble baths, fuzzy slippers and detox drinks. But it can be simpler than that. At its most basic, self-care is a focus on physical and mental health that helps us be our best selves. For many, the outdoors is an essential part of that equation.

Arctic grayling transferred to Marquette State Fish Hatchery in Marquette County

In 2016, a proposed initiative intended to reintroduce Arctic grayling to select Michigan streams was announced. After many milestones, the first year-class of Arctic grayling now resides at the Marquette State Fish Hatchery.

Citizen scientists help DNR track osprey populations in Michigan

Ospreys are magnificent fish-hunting birds with striking brown and white plumage. These large birds are often seen along shallow fish-filled waters of Michigan, including rivers, lakes, reservoirs and marshes. But that wasn't always the case. 

Firefighters return to Michigan after assisting with historic western wildfire season

This year, DNR individuals and teams have taken seven fire engines west, worked on direct fire lines and served various leadership positions on fire management teams in California, Colorado, Oregon, Arizona, Utah and Wyoming.

The art and magic of being there

If a picture is worth a thousand words, it should also be said there are countless things a camera cannot capture, no matter how great the lenses, the lighting or the photo post-production tools are. To truly capture certain outdoor experiences or some of the most important intrinsic beauty of plants, animals, places and many kinds of natural phenomena, it certainly takes more than a thousand words, or one picture.

Marking accessibility gains while looking toward a more inclusive future

In 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act, a landmark civil rights legislation, was signed into law. The DNR has joined numerous governmental agencies across Michigan in commemorating the anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, pledging a renewed focus and more work toward greater opportunities for inclusion.

Honoring conservation officers with military backgrounds

Veterans Day is one day to appreciate and thank soldiers, Marines, airmen and sailors who spent years of their lives defending our country’s freedom and protecting the rights of the American people. Some of those military veterans continue to actively serve the people of Michigan as conservation officers in the Law Enforcement Division of the Department of Natural Resources.

Growing nature's clean-water engineers

Small they may be, but snuffbox mussels carry a lot of weight when it comes to the health of Michigan’s fish and wildlife.

Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund may have made your favorite park or trail possible

In the 1970s, oil and gas resources were found under resources owned by the people of Michigan. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources, governor’s office, conservation organizations, the public and many others worked together to find a solution. From this collaboration, the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund was born.

UP Habitat Workgroup returns reinvigorated

The Upper Peninsula Habitat Workgroup re-emerged recently after a months-long hiatus, with several new members, but an unchanged focus – to conserve and improve deer wintering habitat across the region.

Telling Michigan's Anishinaabe history

The Michigan Historical Commission and the Michigan History Center are beginning an effort to expand the stories told on Michigan Historical Markers to include Native American people and others whose lives have too often been overlooked in exhibits and markers, as well as museum and archival collections.

Kalamazoo River to be restored through Trowbridge Dam removal project in Allegan County

Decades of toxic sediments nestled precariously between the riverbanks of an old Kalamazoo River dam, a deteriorating structure that, if it failed, would release dangerous contaminants would be released into the river’s watershed. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency are removing the dam and restoring this contaminated space to a place benefitting the community.

Get outside and celebrate the glory of Michigan's fall color

There is only one thing to do as Michigan’s air grows crisp, temperatures fall and trees turn from green to glorious shades of yellow, orange and red: revel in it.

Discovering the joy of Michigan's mountain bike trails

Michigan's nonmotorized trails system has more than 3,000 miles dedicated to paved, gravel and off-road single-track trails for bicyclists to enjoy 365 days a year.

Rare locomotive loaded for restoration trip to Pennsylvania

A historic steam locomotive, one of only three surviving Chaplin locomotives in the world, called the Yankee, was readied for a 900-mile trip to Pennsylvania for restoration work. 

Protecting Michigan's historic treasures from fire

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources stewards the state’s treasure trove of natural and cultural resources for the future and makes sure that they can withstand sudden and unexpected disasters – one of them being fire.

Have the best day outdoors by preparing for the worst

The difference between a great day in the forest and a scary one comes down to planning. Make sure you're prepared.

With forest bathing, there's no water required

Nature can be a healing force. For centuries, we’ve recognized the powerful effect of reconnecting with the natural world. There is something rejuvenating about being out among the trees, in being surrounded by the sounds of the forest, the scent of wildflowers, the way sunlight plays through the leaves. Finding that revitalization is one of the key tenets of forest bathing.

High water impacts continue across Michigan

Record or near-record Great Lakes water levels have produced flooding, extensive erosion and destruction or damage to countless shoreline features, forcing the closure of numerous facilities. As always, keep safety in mind near the water. High water levels have also created numerous hazards for boaters, swimmers and even wildlife.

Tracking fish movements with acoustic telemetry

Fish can be hard to locate. Even with modern technology, fish movements are difficult to track, because they're influenced by a variety of factors. Understanding these movements is key to both improving sport fishing as well as developing more effective methods of fish management. 

Herbicides helpful in managing Michigan's forests

From now through fall, people who visit or live near state forests may find signs posted that say herbicide spraying has taken place. This practice helps the DNR manage invasive species or prepare an area for planting new trees. 

Thirteen Michigan state parks celebrate golden anniversaries twice over

This year, 13 of Michigan’s 103 state parks are celebrating turning 100 years old. 

Michigan's traveling waters

With more than 3,000 miles of Great Lakes shoreline and thousands of miles of rivers and streams, Michigan offers ample opportunity to traverse the state over the water – no matter the size or speed of your vessel.

Call it North Country, the backbone of Michigan's Iron Belle Trail

The North Country National Scenic Trail, or North Country Trail for short, is the longest trail in the National Trail System, stretching more than 4,600 miles between North Dakota and New York. With 1,150 miles, Michigan hosts more miles of the North Country Trail than any of the other seven states the trail traverses and connects some of our most scenic and beloved destinations.

A view from above: DNR explores drone technology

The DNR Forest Resources Division's drone program has been expanding since it started with just three vehicles in 2016. The DNR crew now includes seven licensed pilots and 10 drones of different sizes and capabilities. The team has explored using drones to assess forest health, look for various types of wildlife and get photos and video that show off Michigan’s glorious landscapes

Celebrating a big birthday for Michigan's largest state park

In the early 1940s, an intact hemlock-hardwood stands in the western Upper Peninsula was in trouble of being cut down; but thanks to the conservation-minded individuals with a plan, it would late become Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park, Michigan's largest state park.

When there were no fireflies

There was once a time when pest-control practices caused fireflies to disappear in parts of Michigan. While those practices have been discontinued, if we're not mindful of our role within our natural systems, we may not notice when the smaller things go missing.

Restoration continues at Copper Harbor Lighthouse in Keweenaw County

The Copper Harbor Lighthouse has been a silent sentinel since 1848. But the Keweenaw Peninsula’s harsh winters and Lake Superior’s severe weather had taken their toll on the original buildings. Despite several improvements since its founding, the lighthouse is in need of restoration. 

Sharing our space with urban wildlife

Wildlife is all around us--including in some places you wouldn't expect. We all share the same habitat and are connected as different parts of the same ecosystem, so it's important to be live in harmony with our wild neighbors.

The game warden and the Yellow Drake

Fly tying in Michigan is a foundation of our state's fishing tradition, and we owe it to a Michigan game warden.

Bringing nature and history home for Michigan kids

With Michigan schools closed for the remainder of this school year, and educational recreation venues shut down to help slow the spread of coronavirus, many parents and caregivers are looking for more at-home learning resources. Seeking to fill this gap for educational materials, Michigan Department of Natural Resources educators set out to provide such resources.

Collecting Michigan's coronavirus story

The COVID-19 crisis is an extraordinary, unprecedented time in our state’s history, but not the first time Michigan has faced a major pandemic. To understand how to handle today's public health emergency, we must look to the past. 

A biscuits and gravy mornin'

Bagging the hunting limit before sunrise is a rare accomplishment--followed by an even rarer treat. 

DNR incident management team responds to coronavirus

When it comes to fighting wildland fires, members of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources’ incident management teams are accomplished pros. Now they're in uncharted territory, recruited to help manage operations at the TCF Regional Care Center.

Save energy this spring by planting a tree

Homes use 22% of the energy consumed in the United States, and about half of that energy goes to heating and cooling. By planting a tree in the right place, homeowners can save a substantial amount of energy and money while making positive environmental impacts, too.

Becoming an Outdoors Woman

Becoming an Outdoors Woman is a 3-day workshop meant to teach adult women new skills in the outdoors--but it's much more than that. It's a transformative experience, a supportive place for women to step outside their comfort zones and into the natural beauty of the outdoors. 

Haywire for a half century

Michigan’s first rail trail is 50 years old. Now, it's getting the recognition many think it deserves with a year-long celebration of its rich history.

Making family ice-fishing memories

Ice fishing is a great opportunity to bond, but it's also an amazing way to connect to nature. The quiet stillness and the raw nature lets you go at a slower pace, letting your mind calm as you spend time with loved ones.

The expanding mission of conservation officers

The need for a force regulating our natural resources became apparent at a time when most people thought those resources were in infinite supply. Today, the mission of the DNR's conservation officers has evolved to meet contemporary challenges.

Letting you in on a snowshoe secret

 “If you can walk, you can snowshoe.” Snowshoeing is an awesome, low-impact activity and a great way to get some fresh air and natural light during the winter months.

Regional collaborative efforts find unique ways to combat invasive species

Michigan is home to diverse landscapes and ecosystems, which means that challenges to those vital natural resources varies widely. When it comes to invasive species, tailoring our management plans to the specific natural features is critical. 

Skiing into the light

With a legacy that goes back more than 40 years, Michigan Ski for Light's annual ski weekend is a large gathering whose success comes from the connections and efforts of families, friends, community organizations and the DNR for weekend of cross-country skiing for people with vision or mobility disabilities.

MI Birds are your birds - working together for bird conservation

While birds are typically thought of as a sign of spring, many species can be observed throughout the winter months. Thanks to a new bird-focused outreach and engagement program called MI Birds, Michiganders can become citizen scientists and help conserve these important species.

Getting into green spaces

People who enjoy the outdoors know that being out in green spaces can be beneficial in a plethora of ways. A growing body of research on human health and happiness is confirming how good it is for us to connect with nature. Luckily, there are plently of places in Michigan where people can get into green spaces.

Storytelling connects people to Michigan's natural, cultural resources

Stories are an inseparable part of the Michigan experience. Whether told around the campfire or in a family kitchen, these stories are valuable cultural assets. Taken together, they provide a fuller picture of the rich and diverse lives – then and now – of our state’s greatest resources: its people.

Behind the scenes of the 'Wildtalk' podcast

The Wildtalk Podcast is a unique project within the DNR's Wildlife Division--it covers the division's current work and gives listeners a snapshot of wildlife conservation efforts happening throughout the state. New “Wildtalk” episodes are released the first day of each month and cover an array of wildlife- and habitat-related topics.

Tribute to an old friend

Michigan is home to over 170 million native hemlocks. These trees, not to be confused with the poisonous plant bearing the same name, are an important facet of Michigan's jeweled wilderness.

Reflecting on the centennial year - an open letter from the Parks and Recreation Division chief

Michigan state parks, forests, trails and waterways are at the core of the spirit of this Great Lakes state, and we are working hard to ensure that they endure for another century. Read this letter from Parks and Recreation Division Chief Ron Olson for a look to the past to inform our future.