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Pointe Mouillee State Game Area

Pointe Mouillee State Game Area


Hours of Operation

Open at no charge to the public.

This hunting location conducts daily drawings for free hunting zone permits throughout the open waterfowl season.

Description of the area

On the western shores of Lake Erie, Pointe Mouillee State Game Area is one of the most respected waterfowl locations in Michigan. Consisting of 4,040 acres it is one of the largest freshwater marsh restoration projects in the world. Along with exceptional waterfowl hunting, its numerous bird species and habitat diversity make it an important birding site in the Midwest. Bald eagles, black-bellied plovers, glossy Ibises, osprey, and whimbrels are unique species that inhabit Pointe Mouillee throughout the year. Along with many recreational opportunities that are present, Pointe Mouillee also has an annual waterfowl festival in September.

PDF map of area

Hunting Information

  • Morning hunts: Sun., Thurs., and Oct. 9 5:30 a.m. (Reserved hunt opening weekend of duck season)
  • Afternoon hunts: Sun., Tues., and Oct. 9 11:00 a.m. (Reserved hunt opening weekend of duck season)
  • Permits for Thurs. morning drawings are valid until close of shooting hours.


  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Birding
  • Canoeing and Kayaking
  • Fishing
  • Nature Trail Hiking
  • Biking
  • Jogging

Week in review

Through 12/11/2022


Temperatures were stagnant all week in the upper 30s-low 40s. Wind was light, mostly around 5-10 mph and out of the northeast much of the week. No ice formed.

Waterfowl abundance

Ducks were present in high numbers, but mostly sticking to refuge areas, extending into hunting units on non-hunting days. Birds were extremely stale and leery of decoy spreads. Mallards and black ducks were the bulk of the abundance, with other species like pintails and green wing teal also present. Diver numbers were much lower than years past, with few large rafts seen on the lake.

Hunting conditions

Long Pond (2-10): After a year of severe muskrat damage in the unit, a drawdown was completed this summer, yielding great cattail and native grass response throughout the unit. The entire unit is less than 2 feet deep, contrary to recent years, and provides great potholes with extensive cover throughout the unit.

Walpatich Marsh units (17, 18, 20, 22): look awesome, with extensive work continued to maintain potholes throughout the marsh in zones 20 and 22. Water levels will range from 1-3 ft deep.

Walpatich Crop units (15,16, 19, 21): corn grew very well in this unit in terms of height, and produced seed, but lots of that seed has been eaten by blackbirds. The stalks will still provide good cover however. Buckwheat production was very good. Water depth 1-2 feet.

Nelson Unit (11-14): Water levels are currently ankle-knee deep in these zones, with flooding continuing for the first few weeks of the season. Corn looks amazing, with tremendous seed production and height being 7-8 ft tall with no ground lost. Buckwheat and millet also produced seed very well.

Brancheau Unit (23,24,25): cattail marsh. Owned & managed by USFWS, available for open hunting. The unit has been closed for the past 3 years due to Covid in 2020 and per request of USFWS for habitat management. It is now thick with cattails with small pockets opened up around the zone markers. Water will be knee deep.

Public hunting marshes: Vermet and Humphries Units are much lower than previous years. Water from Vermet was used to flood managed cropped units, which lowered the water level in Vermet to less than 2 ft deep, which will be optimal to allow for vegetation growth next summer. Humphries Unit lost much water to evaporation, exposing much of the west end to be mudflats or dry ground as it is supposed to be. Water in the east end is still deep, but significantly shallower than previous years.

Hunter numbers

  • 139 hunter trips December 5-December 11
  • Running total: 1229 hunter trips
  • Draw sizes were highest they had been all year. Tuesday had 19 parties, Thursday had 27, Sunday AM had 29, and Sunday PM had 31.
  • Season average draw size: 19.6 parties

Waterfowl harvest

104 ducks, 4 geese harvested. After a couple of good weeks of hunting, weather became stagnant and no ice formed, allowing the ducks to settle into refuge areas and become educated. Hunters still pursued hard, but with little avail as the birds got smart.

  • Running total
    • 1374 ducks
    • 64 geese
    • 1.12 ducks/hunter trip

What to expect this week


Upcoming events 

  • No draw for late season split (December 31-January 1)

Other comments

This was the second highest harvest total of ducks and geese recorded at Pointe Mouillee, trailing only 2017’s record of 1534 ducks and 2021’s record of 73 geese. The mallard harvest record was broken and made up 72% of the total harvest (989 total mallards harvested). It was also the third highest number of hunter trips.

Thank you all for a great season!

Weekly waterfowl count dashboards

Weekly waterfowl counts are conducted annually, September through January. Use these interactive dashboards to view waterfowl counts across the Wetland Wonders for current and previous years. When the dashboard loads, you will have a total count of the Michigan DNR's Managed Waterfowl Hunt Areas (MWHA) for which counts are provided. The pie charts will show distribution across the areas during the currently selected week (week ending date can be changed using the date selector). Select a specific managed area at the top by clicking/tapping on it to see the numbers for that area. Use the navigation at the bottom of the dashboard to view further breakdowns of area waterfowl numbers.

2022 waterfowl counts

2021 waterfowl counts

2020 waterfowl counts

2019 waterfowl counts

2018 waterfowl counts

2017 waterfowl counts

2016 waterfowl counts

Table of contents

2021 annual report

General introduction

The Pointe Mouillee State Game Area (PMSGA hereafter) is a managed waterfowl unit consisting of 5,195 acres of hemi-marsh, shallow open water, diked cropland, lake plain prairie, island, and lowland hardwood communities. The project is located about 30 miles southwest of Detroit at the confluence of the Detroit River, Huron River, and Western Lake Erie. The state game area, currently, has two permanent full-time employees (one biologist and one technician) along with summer, fall, and winter seasonal staff. These staff are also responsible for management of Erie State Game Area, Petersburg State Game Area, Pointe Aux Peaux State Wildlife Area, Brownstown Prairie State Wildlife Area, and the recently acquired Crystal Waters State Game Area.

Though less novel than 2020, 2021 still reared unfamiliar challenges to management of the areas due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Staff has returned to full-time duties and hiring of seasonal staff was reinstated for 2021, but increased protocol for health and safety has been extremely important. Additionally, the main office is still closed to the public with a reopening date pending. Even with the continued precautions in place, staff has put forth admirable effort to keep Pointe Mouillee and surrounding game areas prime destinations for wildlife recreation.

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Area goals and management emphasis

The management goal for PMSGA is to restore and maintain biotic communities and public use opportunities through practices and improvements that do not disturb existing unique features. These practices also complement natural processes and local area ecology by applying featured species management for species such as mallards, osprey, white-tailed deer, ring-necked pheasants, and wood ducks. Management of this area focuses on restoring sustainable, naturally functioning systems, where possible, and actively manage those systems that cannot be restored to function naturally. Hunting, trapping, fishing, viewing and other wildlife recreational opportunities are available in a diversity of settings because of area management.

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Wildlife production and use estimates

  1. 140 pairs breeding ducks of various species including mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) and wood ducks (Aix sponsa) 450 ducklings produced
  2. 130 pairs breeding Canada geese (Branta canadensis) 425 goslings produced
  3. 40 White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus)
  4. 30 Ring-necked pheasants (Phasianus colchicus)
  5. Other game:
    1. 250 Fox Squirrels (Sciurus niger)
    2. 150 Eastern Cottontail Rabbits (Sylvilagus floridanus)
    3. 250 Woodchucks (Marmota monax)
    4. 16,000 Muskrats (Ondatra zibethica)
  6. Unique wildlife species:
    1. 20 Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) 4 pair nesting on the game area and multiple pairs nesting within 20 miles
    2. 15 nesting pairs of Great Egrets (Casmerodius albus)
    3. 35 Black-Crowned Night Herons (Nycticorax nycticorax)
    4. 45 nesting pairs of Great Blue Herons (Ardea herodias)
    5. 18 American White Pelicans (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos)
    6. 2 pair of nesting Osprey (Pandion Haliaetus)
  7. Invasive Species of Concern
    1. 12 nesting pairs of Mute Swans (Cygnus olor), 100 non-breeding individuals, and 25 cygnets produced

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Significant habitat management

In previous years, through participation in a Cooperative Weed Management Area (CWMA) with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service-Detroit River, Huron-Clinton Metro Parks and The Nature Conservancy (among others), phragmites management has been a top concern for the cooperative. The Pointe Mouillee office has treated 200 acres of phragmities (Phragmites sp.) via aerial spraying in the Humphries Unit, along the diversion dike (southwest area of game area), and in the portion of the game area north of the Huron River. Up to 2020, phragmites were sprayed at the PMSGA for sixteen consecutive years. Unfortunately, 2020 placed Covid-19-related restrictions on spending that prohibited a seventeenth consecutive year of spraying for the invasive species. Fortunately, phragmites treatment was resumed in 2021, albeit at a smaller scale than previous years. Our partners in CWMA, specifically the strike team (managed by USFWS), treated 18 acres in the Walpatich Unit (zones 20, 22), Cripple Point Unit (8 acres), and Dusseau Tract at Erie SGA (5 acres).

The Cripple Point Unit, a project in conjunction with Ducks Unlimited, Pointe Mouillee Waterfowl Festival, Gibraltar Duck Hunters Association, and Waterfowl USA, was completed in the spring. It is a new moist soil management unit located south of Bad Creek. Intensive phragmites management, preservation of cattails, and flooding were performed to create walk-in waterfowl hunting opportunity and habitat for shorebirds.

Long Pond Unit, one of the three managed hunting units, is a cattail marsh. The unit was at a desirable level for hunting depths this season. Muskrats have severely depleted many of the good stands of cattails throughout the unit, but trappers are currently intensely pursuing them. A mid-summer draw-down of the unit is planned for this summer to encourage non-phragmites vegetation growth.

Nelson Unit, Bloody Run Refuge, and Zones 15, 16, 19 & 21 of Walpatich (agriculture) were again planted into strips of corn, buckwheat, and millet. Unfortunately, severe rain shortly after planting stunted or killed much of the corn. Staff tried to replant the corn, but another severe rainstorm resulted in repeated failure. In areas where corn was drowned out, smartweed and other grasses took hold and was left. Buckwheat and millet production were on par with previous years.

Walpatich marsh zones were treated with either water levels or chemical and mechanical methods. Zones 20 and 22 were managed mechanically and chemically as these zones had experienced increased phragmites growth in historical pothole openings. Zones 17 and 18 were left at full pool all year to increase openings.

Staff planted 85 acres of corn, 80 acres of buckwheat, and 30 acres of millet for managed waterfowl hunting.

Sorghum strips were planted in two fields at Pointe Mouillee for pheasant habitat.

Clover plots at Pointe Mouillee and Erie were maintained by mowing multiple times during the summer. A mix of sunflowers, buckwheat, sorghum, and oats were planted in 3 fields at Petersburg.

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Land acquisition

With funding from the Natural Resources Trust Fund and Michigan United Conservation Clubs (MUCC), a new 680-acre parcel of land in northwest Monroe County was purchased. The new game area, Crystal Waters, is currently the remnants of an old quarry with six bodies of water, timber stands, grasslands, and agricultural fields throughout. It provides a new place for wildlife and fishing recreation in an area mostly devoid of public access but reasonably close to a very populated part of the state.

Planning for making the area more accessible and productive for fish and wildlife is currently underway. We intend to increase accessibility via parking lots, trails, and opening creation and maintenance, which will be an ongoing project. Habitat plans are also in the works, as staff are assessing areas for food plots and grassland establishment and working with the Fisheries Division for fish habitat.

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Area maintenance

  • Staff maintained equipment, parking lots, signs, dikes, pumps, barriers, and buildings.
  • All the rollers at PMSGA were repaired before the waterfowl season.
  • The tube connecting Long Pond to the sump ditch canal was crushed, as the gate was leaking. It will be replaced in the coming year.
  • Signs were posted in the most necessary areas at Crystal Waters. Posting will continue this year.
  • Access trails and safety/zone lines were mowed at Pointe Mouillee, Erie, and Petersburg.

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No new equipment was purchased for PMSGA this year.

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Special projects

Area personnel banded 510 Canada geese and 74 wood ducks.

Deer Check was open at the Pointe Mouillee equipment barn using a drive through set-up where customers did not have to exit their vehicle. A similar set up was done at Cabela’s. Both locations were open for eight days (November 18-21, December 2-5). The check stations were located within the target CWD surveillance area, so there was emphasis on collecting samples for testing.

  • Over 250 deer were checked at Pointe Mouillee
  • Over 300 deer were checked at Cabela’s

The Pheasant Hunting Initiative (appropriated by Public Act 618 of 2018), provided the release of pheasants at PMSGA and ESGA through the 2019 pheasant season. It was stalled for 2020 but returned for 2021.

Ohio State University continued their telemetry work on shorebirds at PMSGA and repaired their telemetry towers with help from Winous Point Marsh Conservancy.

PMSGA personnel continued their affiliation with the Western Lake Erie Cooperative Weed Management Association (CWMA) steering committee with the US Fish and Wildlife Service, The Nature Conservancy, DTE, Huron Clinton Metro Park Authority, Eastern Michigan University, and SEMCOG.

A new Managed Waterfowl Hunt Area workgroup comprised of staff from these areas throughout the Southeast and Southwest regions began their charge of evaluating and creating a long-term plan for Pointe Mouillee, St. Clair Flats, Shiawassee, Fish Point, Nayanquing Point, Fennville Farm, and Muskegon Wastewater.

Pointe Mouillee Waterfowl Festival, with help from many donors and volunteers, completed construction on an ADA compliant hunting blind/viewing pier in Zone 11.

Gibraltar Duck Hunters Association provided funding for and installed a new floating dock at the PMSGA headquarters boat launch.

Unfortunately, many special events at the game area had to be cancelled in 2020. In 2021, most of the events returned and were gladly welcomed.

Youth duck hunt, lunch, and workshop put on by Gibraltar Duck Hunters Association, Waterfowl USA Southwestern Lake Erie Chapter, and the DNR Wildlife Division. 50+ youths participate and receive raffle gifts, t-shirt, waterfowl hunting instruction, calls, and lunch. The event is hosted during the Waterfowl Festival at the PMSGA Headquarters.

Christmas bird count – Yearly bird count performed by members of our local Audubon chapters.

Spring, Summer, and Fall Bird Counts are conducted by volunteers and results are given to PMSGA staff for tracking.

Pointe Mouillee Waterfowl Festival hosted by the Waterfowl Festival Committee and DNR staff. Between 6,000-8,000 people come to Pointe Mouillee over a weekend in September to participate in the festivities surrounding the Waterfowl Festival; the events include the duck hunters’ shooting tournament, duck and goose calling contests, dog jumping contest, trading post, auction, and concessions among others. 2021 was the 73rd Annual Festival.

Fall open house hosted by Pointe Mouillee staff. Hunters and non-hunters attend. Light refreshments provided and projects accomplished over the past year and current marsh conditions leading up to waterfowl season are discussed. A driving tour of the game area is also provided.

Audubon driving tours – Chapters from Detroit, Macomb, Washtenaw, and Jackson organize driving tours for their members.

Mowed and sprayed large phragmites patches in zone 20 and 22 and Cripple Point.

Cripple Point moist soil management unit.

Strip crop sorghum into Mouillee Upland for pheasant habitat aiding the Pheasant Restoration Initiative

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Recreational and educational activities

Bird watching, fishing, trapping, and hunting are the major recreational activities at PMSGA. Thousands of people from all over the United States and Canada visit the game area throughout the year to view a diverse group of bird species. Fishermen make thousands of trips to PMSGA and to the headquarters to launch their boat for lake and river fishing or fish from the sea wall. Wildlife watching, hunting, trapping, fishing, hiking, dog training, and boating are recreational activities enjoyed by the public at PMSGA.

A rise in numbers during 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic seemed to drop off slightly in 2021, but user trips still seemed consistent.

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There were a total of 6 registered trappers for the 2020-2021 trapping season.

Permits for each season become available in November. For interested trappers, please inquire at that time for next trapping season.

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Waterfowl banding and surveys

Goose banding operations were again scaled down for 2021. Public volunteers were not allowed to participate for health and safety precaution, therefore, only full-time staff participated. 510 Canada geese were banded. Wood duck banding increased this year, with 74 wood ducks being banded.

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Hunting season report


Prior to 2020, managed hunting at PMSGA was done three days a week (Sunday AM/PM, Tuesday AM and Thursday AM/PM) in the Walpatich, Long Pond and Nelson Units (21 zones totaling approximately 450 acres). Through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service a draw also occurred for three AM zones owned by the USFWS at the Brancheau Unit in Estral Beach. Each of the managed hunting zones has specific rules regarding shot size, shell limit, and hunting party limit to optimize the experience for those utilizing the managed zones.

2020, however, brought required changes to managed hunting and draw operations due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Most of these changes were continued into 2021. Precautions for hunter and staff health and safety were of utmost concern for all managed areas, so each had to manufacture their own new operations to adhere to strict safety protocol. At PMSGA the following actions (not a conclusive list) were taken in 2021:

  • Drive-through service system at the equipment barns to obtain registration permits where staff were always separated from hunters
  • Announcements over an FM transmitter
  • Hunters asked to always remain in vehicles during the draw
  • Masks always worn by staff; hunters encouraged to wear masks when interacting with staff
  • Sanitization of all equipment/surfaces before & after each draw
  • Elimination of bag checks after AM hunts

Draws increased from 3 per week total in 2020 to 4 per week total in 2021 (Sunday AM/PM, Tuesday AM, Thursday AM for all-day permit). This change was made to reduce crowd size on Sundays by offering 2 options. An additional draw day for AM and PM hunts were offered on Opening Day (October 9).

Leftover permits were available until 4:00 p.m. each draw day.

The Brancheau Unit was again removed from the draw for 2021 per request of USFWS.

The Vermet, Humphries and Bad Creek Units consist of 1,820 acres of emergent vegetation/cattail marsh. These areas are open to public hunting 7 days a week during waterfowl season, offering opportunity for those unsuccessful in the draw.

There are also three refuge units (Bloody Run, Banana Dike and Lautenschlager Units) that are closed to all use and occupancy September 1st through December 15th.

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Weather and habitat conditions

The 2021 water levels in western Lake Erie were again above average. However, water levels were not an issue this year for flooding managed units.

Crop planting in the Nelson, Bloody Run, and Walpatich Units was difficult in 2021. Spring was very promising because it was very dry and prep work went well leading up to corn planting in June. Corn was planted in early-mid June without any issues, then three days later five inches of rain fell. Nearly 20 acres of corn was drowned out and many more acres were stunted. Efforts to replant the lost corn were tried two weeks later to provide cover, but another large rainstorm occurred and drowned most of that corn out. In total, about 2/3 of the corn planted survived, though much of it was stunted. Stalks still produced ears for food, but much less than desired. Buckwheat production was moderate to good and provided food for waterfowl.

The Long Pond Marsh Unit has suffered vegetation loss due to an explosion of muskrat activity in the unit. The dense population has eaten many of the cattails and huts are popping up across the unit, creating more open water than desired. Trappers are intensely pursuing the rats now and a mid-summer draw down is planned for 2022 to help regenerate cattail growth. However, there is still good habitat and extensive use of waterfowl, especially early in the season.

The Walpatich Marsh Zones were in much better shape than previous years. Zones 17 and 18 had very good response to year-round water cover. Zones 20 and 22, after extensive phragmites management, provided good potholes in the extensive cattail cover.

Weather for the entire season was mostly mild. Minimal ice formed throughout the season with no major freeze outs. There were a few days of sheet ice that deterred hunter participation, but overall hunting opportunity was nearly at its maximum for the entire season.

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Migration and waterfowl numbers

Weekly waterfowl counts are done from September through January at Pointe Mouillee. The count is done in the Bloody Run and Banana Dike Refuge and the Vermet Unit. Counts are done from the ground in a vehicle.

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Season dates and area regulations

Managed hunting was offered three days a week on a regular Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday schedule from October 10-December 5. Sunday was an AM/PM hunt, Tuesday was an AM, Thursday was an AM draw for an all-day hunt. An opening day hunt (Saturday, Oct. 9) was offered for an AM/PM draw. Hunters were limited to 25 shells per hunt and all federal/state regulations were in effect.

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Hunting season results


2021 was the first year with a pre-registered hunt for the opening weekend. Pre-registered hunts were offered for both days of opening weekend.

A youth-only hunt was held for the PM hunt on opening weekend. Leftovers were available for non-preregistered parties only if they had a youth in the party. A youth-preferred hunt was held on November 7th, where leftovers were available for all parties. A veteran’s only hunt was held on November 11. Leftovers were available only for parties with veterans.

Harvest and hunter use

For harvest data collection, a self-reporting data card is left in designated permit tubes by hunters after each hunt.

Daily bag limits for 2021 were 6 ducks, the same as 2020. The 2021 season fell short of the previous year with a harvest total of 1,185 ducks reported, compared to 1,309 ducks reported in 2020. Goose harvest jumped from 61 in 2020 to 73 in 2021, the highest recorded at Pointe Mouillee. 19 different species of waterfowl were harvested in the managed zones. Hunter trips increased from 1,019 in 2020 to 1,211 in 2021. Hunter success decreased, with 1.04 birds per hunter trip in 2021 compared to 1.43 in 2020.

Early Teal and Goose Seasons: The managed waterfowl hunting area is not open for these seasons. Early teal and goose hunting are allowed in the public hunting areas throughout PMSGA. Hunters are not required to report their harvest in the open hunting areas. Our observation is that over the weekends there was good participation in the hunt but during the week participation was very limited on the game area.

Youth Hunts: There is not an early season youth hunt in the managed waterfowl hunting area however all the public hunting areas are open. We partner with Waterfowl U.S.A. Southwest Lake Erie Chapter and Gibraltar Duck Hunters Association to put on a youth hunt/workshop/luncheon. This youth event brings in 45-55 youth hunters every year. Each youth receives a dozen decoys, duck and goose calls, and a goody bag.

During the regular waterfowl season, we hosted two youth only draws in our managed waterfowl area on October 9 and November 7. The October hunt had 12 youth parties. The November hunt had 7 youth parties.

A veteran’s only hunt occurred on November 11. This hunt produced 16 veteran parties.

The 2021 managed waterfowl season saw a total of 1,211 hunter trips. Hunter trips increased from 2020 (1,019 hunters), which was due to an extra draw added from 2020. An average of 19 parties showed up for registration for 21 available zones, and 14 zones per draw were taken on average. There was a high of 46 parties and low of 4 parties.

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Cropland, marshland and water level management

Farming direction in zones 13, 14, and 21 were continued in a north/south direction, while 11, 12, 15, 16, 19, and the Bloody Run were planted in an east/west direction. Corn and buckwheat strip rotation was done in all agriculture zones. Millet strips were also planted in Nelson and Bloody Run.

Long Pond, an all-cattail marsh unit, was at normal hunting depth. Deeper water was used in 2019 to control unwanted vegetation and open more potholes in the marsh. This helped with creating better habitat for ducks and increased harvest in the unit from 2019 to 2020.

Lautenschlauger and Walpatich have good cattail growth. Lautenschalger was not drained. Walpatich was drained for agriculture planting then flooded for normal hunting levels. Zones 17 and 18 were flooded for moist soil habitat, while zones 20 and 22 were managed mechanically and chemically to increase openings in the cattails.

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Volunteers and partners

  • Michigan Duck Hunters’ Tournament & Pointe Mouillee Waterfowl Festival: Holds annual festival to draw visitors and spark interest in the game area. Donates money to the game area for seed, fertilizer, and equipment. Constructed and coordinated the ADA blind in Zone 11.
  • Waterfowl USA Southwestern Lake Erie Chapter: Donate money to PMSGA for equipment/repairs and aids with the cost of the regional and flyway meetings that the DNR hosts. Co-sponsors annual youth waterfowl hunt at PMSGA.
  • Gibraltar Duck Hunters Association: Purchases equipment, donates to habitat and other special projects, wood duck boxes, and co-sponsors the youth waterfowl hunt at PMSGA. Coordinated and installed the floating dock at HQ launch.
  • Ducks Unlimited: Wetland restoration projects, grants, phragmites control, and advice on pumps and water control structures. Donates seed and nest boxes.
  • Pheasants Forever: Advice, seed, and help with planting fields designated for grass planting. Also plays major role in the Pheasant Hunting Initiative project.
  • Michigan United Conservation Clubs: Pheasant Hunting Initiative, invasive species control, volunteer in On-the-Ground projects, provide copies of Michigan Out-of-Doors magazine.
  • Detroit, Jackson, Macomb, Washtenaw, and Oakland Audubon Societies: Volunteers hours for bird counts and tours.
  • Detroit International Wildlife Refuge: Apply for grants. Help with management on federal lands. Common Tern banding, duck and goose banding, hunting regulations on federal land, and managed draw for the Brancheau Unit.
  • Cooperative Weed Management Association (CWMA): Phragmities strike team, TNC, DTE, Consumers Energy, Huron Clinton Metro Park Authority, Eastern Michigan – apply for grants, and a group attack on phragmites.
  • Wayne County Road Commission: Grades drive/parking lot and the section of Mouillee Road that is state-owned. Cuts back vegetation growing along Mouillee Rd and plants trees at headquarters and along Mouillee Rd.
  • Monroe County Conservation District: Houses and maintains no-till drill for the No-Till Drill program. Conducts for the Clean Boats, Clean Waters program.
  • Law Enforcement Division: Cooperatively work in enforcing violations, game area and hunting rules, etc.
  • Fisheries Division: Tags walleye in Huron River and fish research in Lake Erie. Co-coordinating fish habitat work at Crystal Waters.
  • Parks and Recreation Division: Various wetland projects and the osprey platforms at Sterling State Park.
  • Osprey Watch of Southeast Michigan: Monitors all osprey nests in Southeast Michigan and helps band the osprey chicks.

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Economic benefits

There are a number of local businesses that benefit from having the PMSGA nearby. Because we offer so many recreational activities at the PMSGA, our users purchase from local retailers regularly. The local marina and the local bait and tackle store depend on our patrons for a good portion of their business. There are three public boat launches with access to Lake Erie and the Detroit and Huron Rivers in the immediate vicinity of the PMSGA. In addition, the gas stations in nearby Rockwood and South Rockwood also benefit. These gas stations are near I-75 and are the two main exits people use to get to the PMSGA. Hunters, bird watchers, and fishermen frequent these establishments purchasing gas, coffee, water, snacks. There are also a few restaurants and bars in Rockwood, South Rockwood, and Brownstown Township that benefit from hunters, fishermen and bird watchers stopping to get something to eat. During the Pointe Mouillee Waterfowl Festival, upwards of 8,000 people descend on the PMSGA over a two-day period spending their money in the surrounding area.

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  • Continue to pursue funding for wetland restoration projects at Pointe Mouillee.
    • Lezotes Landing
    • Pointe Sec Unit
    • Smith Creek restoration
    • Large pump replacement for water control
  • Continue experimental methods to control Phragmites. Without intensive management practices, Phragmities will out-compete native vegetation in the wetland ecosystem, resulting in a monoculture of Phragmites.
  • Continue row crop planting on drier sites behind zones 13 and 14 to help control brush invasion and aid terrestrial species such as white-tailed deer and pheasants.
  • Maintain existing program of flooding cropland in the Bloody Run Refuge to attract, feed, and hold migrating waterfowl during fall and spring migrating seasons.
  • Develop new nesting meadow and prairie grassland sites along the Long Pond Unit, particularly in zones 4 and 6 and extend the prairie grassland in the back of Zones 11 and 12.
  • Continue developing the Mouillee Upland into a strip-cropped unit for pheasant and white-tailed deer habitat by removing brush and weeds and planting corn and grass.
  • Continue prescribed burn rotations on prairie grass fields at PMSGA. This management strategy will maintain our warm season grasses while setting back cool season grasses, broadleaf weeds, and brush.
  • Work with Gibraltar Duck Hunters Association, Pointe Mouillee Waterfowl Festival, and Waterfowl USA Southwest Lake Erie Chapter to create more opportunities for hunters through projects like additional blinds.
  • Continue with pre-registered hunts at PMSGA during opening weekend.
  • Two youth hunts and a veterans’ hunt conducted in the managed areas.
  • Continue experimenting with a self-registration system that allows hunters to register themselves late in the season when the marsh is frozen or there is a lack of participation.

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  • 10/13/2022 at 6:00 p.m.
    • Get out and explore Michigan’s Wetland Wonders and Managed Waterfowl Hunting Areas this fall! Open houses will be occurring in early October. These open houses allow you to talk with local staff, tour the areas and see what each has to offer for the upcoming waterfowl hunting season.
  • 11/10/2022 - Veterans preference drawing