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Swimming Upstream

A special Environment Report series on fish and the fishing industry in Michigan. Are our fish safe to eat, what can they tell us about the health of our lakes and rivers, and what's the future of commercial fishing in the Great Lakes? Reporter Dustin Dwyer traveled around the state and brings us these seven stories. Support for coverage of Great Lakes fishery issues comes from the Great Lakes Fishery Trust .

Part One: The Shrinking Commercial Fishing Industry

Fresh, Michigan-caught fish is hard to find. Finding a Michigan commercial fisherman can be even harder. We'll catch up with the Petersen family, one of only about 50 remaining fishing operations in the state.

Part Two: The Fish Monger’s Wife

The Petersen family has been in the fishing business going on eight decades. Last year, Amber Mae Petersen started the family's first ever retail business. Customers at the Muskegon Farmers Market love it.

Part Three: A Dam Problem

Many of Michigan's dams are out of date, unnecessary and damaging to Michigan's fish population. But dam removal can be a nightmare on its own. We'll visit one dam removal project on the headwaters of the Manistee River.

Part Four: Fending Off Sturgeon Poachers

Sturgeon are incredible, prehistoric creatures. We'll visit with a group of people trying to protect them during the vulnerable spawning season on the Black River.

Part Five: The Mind of a Fish

Captain Ed Patnode has spent his life trying to understand the mind of a fish. We'll take a trip with him on Saginaw Bay to find out what he's learned.

Part Six: Lake St. Clair

Michigan's fish can tell us a lot about the health of our lakes and rivers. We'll spend a day with a DNR research team on Lake St. Clair as they conduct their fish population survey.

Part Seven: Toxic Substances in Michigan Fish

What's in our fish, and how worried should we be? A visit with the scientists in Lansing who test Michigan's fish for toxins, and the man responsible for explaining the results to a confused public.

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