Sea Grant Research Ends up on Dinner Plates
When some scientists complete their research, they turn off Bunsen burners, wipe down lab tables and wash out test tubes. When Sea Grant’s Aquaculture Specialist Fred Binkowski finishes a project, he’s looking at a tank full of market-size yellow perch. It’s research you can eat, and that’s just what hundreds in the Milwaukee area did with it.
In a February donation to the Hunger Task Force of Milwaukee, Binkowski turned over 500 pounds of the fish. The processed, frozen yellow perch ended up on the dinner plates of families whose financial resources would otherwise have prohibited such a tasty meal. Retail prices on the fish vary but can be as high as $16 per pound. The total estimated value of the donation was $8,000. This is the second year in a row the pantry has received a fish donation.
The fish hand-off took place as part of a media event on Fat Tuesday, covered by all four of Milwaukee’s television stations, Wisconsin’s largest daily newspaper and a news service that circulated the story throughout the Midwest.
Until 1996, commercial fishermen caught yellow perch in Lake Michigan. Then changes to the lake’s ecosystem brought about a collapse of the food web, and the fish can no longer be harvested in big numbers. Any retail yellow perch coming out of the Great Lakes now hails from Lake Erie.
Binkowski’s research has yielded promising results on economically viable production methods, such as multiple spawning seasons in a 12-month period, instead of a single spawning; accelerated fish-growth rates; and refined management practices for commercial-scale systems.
Phil Moy Takes on Additional Duties
Phil Moy has been promoted to the position of Advisory Services Manager for the University of Wisconsin Aquatic Sciences Center. Phil will report directly to Jim Hurley, assistant director for research and outreach.
Phil will continue his present duties as aquatic invasive species and fisheries outreach coordinator and will help Jim in day-to-day outreach management with particular emphasis on strategic planning and developing new programmatic opportunities for both the Sea Grant and Water Resources programs housed in the Aquatic Sciences Center.
“We are really pleased to announce that Phil will be joining our management team in Madison,” Director Anders W. Andren said. “We get a double benefit – the addition of Phil Moy and his insights from several years of field experience on outreach and education issues, and letting Jim have more time to develop our climate service research and outreach activities as well as new research focus areas.”
Moy leaves behind regional outreach work in Manitowoc, Wis., in four counties that hug the north-central shore of Lake Michigan. “We are presently exploring a number of avenues to maintain our outreach capability in Manitowoc field office, and hope to have arrangements worked out in a few months,” Andren said.
Clean Marina Program Sets Sail
UW Sea Grant is helping marinas around the state stay shipshape while protecting the water resources we all enjoy. With support from the Wisconsin Coastal Management Program, UW Sea Grant and the Wisconsin Marina Association launched a Clean Marina Program to promote environmentally friendly practices at marinas across the state.
The voluntary program aims to be a win-win venture for marina owners and the environment supporting their businesses. Sea Grant Water Quality Specialist Vicky Harris and Coastal Engineering Specialist Gene Clark worked with a steering committee of marina owners and agency representatives to develop criteria for Clean Marina certification. They also produced outreach and education materials, including a Clean Marina Guidebook and Clean Boater Tip Sheets. These materials debuted this past winter at two training workshops for marina operators, and they are now available on the program’s Web site, wisconsincleanmarina.org.
The guidebook outlines practices required by law as well as additional best-management practices. Facilities that follow the practices may be certified as “Clean Marinas,” and they are encouraged to use the designation to promote their businesses.
The Wisconsin Clean Marina Program is part of a nationwide effort coordinated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (coastalmanagement.noaa.gov/marinas.html).