Editorial: Red Lake Nation restores fishery for its future
"The state of Minnesota and the Red Lake Band of Chippewa on Thursday continued an important partnership in the preservation of Minnesota’s premier walleye fisheries. The two signed a new five-year agreement, which included the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs, to jointly manage to maintain the health of the Upper and Lower Red Lakes fishery.

The fishery collapsed in the 1990s through overfishing, mostly by the band’s commercial fishing operation. The walleye has helped the Red Lake people sustain themselves for decades, and even aided domestic relief efforts during World War II.

Aided by technical experts, the politicians made the right decision in 1999 to impose a moratorium on walleye fishing in both Red Lakes until the stock could be built up, both naturally and with millions of fingerlings from Lake Vermilion. While admitting it might take10 years, the walleye fishery was reopened in 2006, only seven years due to a strong comeback.

“Our lake and the species within the lake are not only important to us as a resource for subsistence, it’s also a resource for us culturally,” said then-Tribal Chairman Bobby Whitefeather. “The lake is part of our culture, the inhabitants of the lake are part of our culture.”"

Get the Story:
Editorial: Protecting Red lakes into future (The Bemidji Pioneer 1/31

Earlier Story:
Minnesota DNR, Red Lake Band renew walleye agreement (The Grand Forks Herald 1/28)