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Built in 1914 and closed by the DNR in the 1960s, the Grayling Fish Hatchery existed as a quaint tourist attraction in Grayling — until recently when state officials granted a permit allowing Harrietta Hills Trout Farm to raise 300,000 pounds of fish annually. Reaction in river country came swiftly.
Joseph Hemming, attorney for the Anglers of the AuSable, says the group sees potential damage done by the fish farm’s release of fish waste and uneaten food as the biggest threat ever faced by the AuSable River. Anglers of the AuSable and the Sierra Club have filed appeals to the permit. AOTA intends to establish baseline numbers as it installs water quality monitors upstream and downstream from the old Hatchery.
In this video, Hemming, along with David Smith, of the AuSable River Property Owner’s Association; Josh Greenberg, of Gates AuSable Lodge; and Andy Partlo, co-owner of the Old AuSable Fly Shop, discuss the issues around the potential damage to one of the country’s top recreational rivers in this video.
For a deeper dive into the issues, listen to the 35-minute Trout Radio segment on the Home Page as the four interviewees state the case for anglers, boaters, property and business owners who treasure a healthy river.