Sturgeon are ancient beings whose presence graced the stories, songs and memories of countless generations of people. Then they were banished by greed. Today, with the dreams and hands of fisheries biologists, and tribal members, the sturgeon are returning to the rivers and lakes of the forest country just west of the Great Lakes, returning in all their glory. They are returning to the White Earth Reservation, and as they return, they teach us a lesson of connectivity and our own relationships with each other. That lesson, we believe, is one we that we can begin undoing some of what we have done to each other and with the realization that we are all ultimately connected.
Working in collaboration with the White Earth Biology Department, the White Earth Land Recovery Project has seen another successful release of sturgeon back into the waters of the reservation. On a sunny day in September, Randy Zortman of the WE Biology Dept. and his staff released 8000 sturgeon into White Earth Lake and 5000 into Round Lake.
To date, the White Earth Land Recovery Project has assisted in the release of about 50,000 sturgeon fingerlings back into the waters of the White Earth Reservation. Each year, the White Earth Biology Department, with assistance from WELRP releases approximately 8,000 sturgeon into White Earth Lake (each year) and 5,000 – 6,000 into Round Lake. In 2003, the White Earth Lake dam was removed and we are working with the WE Tribe to ensure this work continues into the future. At this time, the WE Tribe is looking ahead to the future and working to obtain funding to continue the work of sturgeon restoration, and dam alterations.
To learn more about the ancient sturgeon, please email us or to make a donation towards this work, please call us at 1-888-274-8318.