January 20, 1985: The Michigan Moose Lift

Upper Peninsula of Michigan moose

Upper Peninsula of Michigan moose, photo by Greg Kretovic

Every so often, something I have featured on Michigan in Pictures will vanish from the internet, leaving whatever I shared as the only remaining source. Such is the case with one of my favorite modern Michigan stories, The Michigan Moose Lift of January 20, 1985. Click that link to read about this historic operation that relocated 59 moose from the Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario and led to the re-establishment of moose in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula – somewhere north of 400 at last estimate*.

Here’s a very cool video from the DNR that does a great job of telling the story. Enjoy!

Greg took this photo of a large bull moose exploring the shoreline of an inland lake in Baraga County in October of 2012. View his photo bigger, see more in his slideshow, and definitely follow him at Michigan Nature Photos on Facebook.

* From the Detroit Free Press article on the latest biennial survey of Michigan’s moose population:

The latest biennial survey by the Department of Natural Resources produced an estimate of 323 moose in their primary Michigan range, which includes Baraga, Iron and Marquette counties. If correct, that would be a decline there of about 28 percent from 2013, when the estimate was 451.

Chad Stewart, a deer, elk and moose management specialist with the DNR, said the population could have held steady since the 2013 count but that the findings, including a decrease in the number of calves spotted with adult females, suggest a decline is the likelier scenario.

It is “quite possible that we’re looking at a considerable drop in numbers,” Stewart said Monday.

A smaller moose herd wanders the eastern U.P. Biologists have long estimated their number at around 100.

October Vibes in le détroit du Lac Érie

October Vibes by Camera Jesus

October Vibes, photo by Camera Jesus

Simply spectacular view of the city of Detroit.

The name of Detroit comes from “le détroit du Lac Érie” – French for the Straits of Lake Erie and referring to the St. Clair River and Lake St. Clair that link Erie with Lake Huron. Wikipedia has a pretty nice writeup on the Detroit River:

The Detroit River flows for 24 nautical miles (44 km; 28 mi) from Lake St. Clair to Lake Erie. By definition, this classifies it as both a river and a strait — a strait being a narrow passageway connecting two large bodies of water, which is how the river earned its name from early French settlers. However, today, the Detroit River is rarely referred to as a strait, because bodies of water referred to as straits are typically much wider.

The Detroit River is only 0.5 to 2.5 miles (0.80 to 4.02 km) wide. The Detroit River starts on an east to west flow but then bends and runs north to south. The deepest portion of the Detroit River is 53 feet (16 m) deep in the northern portion of the river. At its source, the river is at an elevation of 574 feet (175 m) above sea level. The river drops only three feet before entering into Lake Erie at 571 feet (174 m). As the river contains no dams and no locks, it is easily navigable by even the smallest of vessels. The watershed basin for the Detroit River is approximately 700 square miles (1,800 km2).

Since the river is fairly short, it has few tributaries. Its largest tributary is the River Rouge in Michigan, which is actually four times longer than the Detroit River and contains most of the basin. The only other major American tributary to the Detroit River is the much smaller Ecorse River. Tributaries on the Canadian side include Little Creek and the River Canard. The discharge for the Detroit River is relatively high for a river of its size. The river’s average discharge is approximately 188,000 cubic feet per second (5,324 m³/s), and the river’s flow is constant.

Check out Detroit 1701 for a bit of the river’s history and also be sure to support the Friends of the Detroit River who are doing great work to restore this corridor.

View the photo background bigiliciousfollow Camera Jesus on Facebook for lots more and view & purchase Joe’s Detroit photos (and others) from his website.

More Michigan rivers on Michigan in Pictures!

You can see it all from Mission Hill

mission hill overlook, chippewa county, michigan by twurdemann

mission hill overlook, chippewa county, michigan, photo by twurdemann

Regarding his photo from the Superior shore a couple weeks ago, twurdemann writes:

Autumn view from the Mission Hill Overlook / Mission Hill Cemetery, Brimley, Michigan- -32 km / 20 miles west of Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan. The overlook rises more the 50m / 165 feet above nearby Spectacle Lake. In the distance, Point Iroquois, St. Marys River / Whitefish Bay / Lake Superior, Gros Cap Crib Lightstation in the middle of the river (Ontario, Canada), Gros Cap Bluffs, Prince Township wind farm turbines (my link), and in the far distance the Batchewana Highlands (upper left)- -over 50 km / 30 miles away.

View this bigger and see more in his Autumn slideshow.

Sault Ste. Marie International Railroad Bridge

international railroad bridge, sault ste. marie, ontario / michigan

international railroad bridge, sault ste. marie, ontario / michigan, photo by twurdemann

The Library of Congress page on the Sault Ste. Marie International Railroad Bridge that spans the Soo Locks from Michigan to Canada at St. Marys Falls explains that:

The Sault Ste. Marie International Railroad Bridge has nine camelback truss spans crossing the St. Marys River with bascule and vertical lift bridge components crossing the American Locks at the St. Marys Falls Canal. It is the only bridge in the United States known to include these three types of spans in a single structure to use an interlocking mechanism to connect the leaves of the double-leaf bascule span.

It is Michigan’s most significant railroad bridge from an engineering history standpoint and is eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places.

Click through for some great old photos of the bridge and explore the various sections through Historic Bridges.

Check this photo out on black and see more great shots in twurdemann’s Sault Ste. Marie 2012-2013 slideshow.

More Michigan bridges on Michigan in Pictures.