The Minnesota Sea Grant recently awarded $678,500 to nine University of Minnesota research projects over the next two years. Each project selected involves aquatic habitats ranging from coastal ecosystems to fishery issues including:
• Determining the habitats favored by spawning and juvenile lake trout over two shoals of the Apostle Islands.
• Using DNA fingerprinting to determine whether E. coli bacteria in the Lake Superior watershed are coming from sewage or from sediments that erode into the Duluth-Superior harbor and Lake Superior.
• Exploring ways to speed the breakdown of PCBs in the Great Lakes by mixing elemental iron with microscopic organisms. Enhancing the ability of natural microorganisms to breakdown PCBs might complement or replace expensive and controversial dredging.
• Comparing the reproductive success of hatchery-stocked steelhead trout to that of Lake Superior’s naturalized steelhead.