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2019-01-09 / News

Reel Fishing Tips

Courtesy of the Michigan DNR

Where to Go Ice Fishing

Still need a New Year’s resolution? We’ve got one for you: go fishing more! Now is a great time to head out with ice available in many parts of the state and plenty of species to target.

Don’t forget to brush up on your ice fishing safety tips before you head out! Just check out our Ice Fishing Basics page.

The next few months can be the perfect time to target a few specific species, including bluegill, northern pike and/or walleye. Curious about some spots where you can find them?

Bluegill

Upper Peninsula – East Lake (Luce Co.), Groveland Mine Ponds (Dickinson Co.)

Northern lower peninsula – Lake St. Helen & Houghton Lake (Roscommon Co.), Fletcher Floodwaters (Alpena Co.), Paradise Lake (Emmet Co.)

Southern lower peninsula – Corey/ Pleasant/ Clear/ Long/Harwood lakes (St. Joseph/Cass Cos.), Devil’s Lake (Lenawee), Lake St. Clair

Northern Pike

Upper Peninsula – Blind Sucker Flooding (Luce Co.), Milakokia Lake (Mackinac Co.), Les Cheneaux Islands (Mackinac Co.)

Northern lower peninsula – Fletcher Floodwaters (Alpena Co.), Crystal Lake (Benzie Co.), Higgins Lake (Roscommon Co.)

Southern lower peninsula – Wabasis Lake (Kent Co.), Lake Orion (Oakland Co.), Lake St. Clair

Walleye

Upper Peninsula – AuTrain Lake (Alger Co.), Big Manistique Lake (Mackinac Co.)

Northern lower peninsula – Burt & Black lakes (Cheboygan Co.), Hubbard Lake (Alcona Co.), Lake St. Helen & Houghton Lake (Roscommon Co.), Lake Charlevoix (Charlevoix Co.)

Southern lower peninsula – Gun Lake (Allegan/Barry Cos.), Union Lake (Oakland Co.), Lake St. Clair insult to injury, the waterproofing and anti-microbial treatments now common in everyday carpeting have been linked to cancer, birth defects and hormone disruption.

Last, but not least, carpet padding is typically made from scraps of polyurethane recycled from older furniture and mattresses—and as such likely contains carcinogenic chemical flame-retardants now banned in new furniture.

Well, that’s all well and good, but what choices do we have? Actually, lots. Carpeting labeled with the Carpet & Rug Institute’s “Green Label Plus” or UL Environment’s “Greenguard” emit low amounts of VOCs, and as such are safer for you and your family.

Wool is the most common eco-friendly choice, but jute and cotton varieties are coming on strong. Stay away from stain fighting, waterproofing or antimicrobial treatments. For carpet padding, go with felt rather than synthetic rubber. And make sure to use low-emitting, non-solvent adhesives and/or fasteners during installation.

No matter what kind of carpeting you end up with, make sure to vacuum it regularly— the American Lung Association recommends at least 3x/week with a HEPA filterequipped vacuum—to remove dust, allergens and pollutants that you (or your pets) might track in. “Carpets are ... the perfect environment to harbor dust mites, mold and mildew, which are all common allergens,” reports EWG.

One way to avoid all of these issues entirely is to forego carpeting altogether and go with tile, wood, cork or natural linoleum flooring with low-VOC sealant. They don’t off-gas VOCs or harbor allergens and pollutants, and they’re easy to clean while lasting decades longer than carpeting anyway. Throw down a few wool area rugs (easily cleaned outside) and you’ll be good—and green— to go.

Now what to do with the old carpeting is another question entirely. Carpeting is difficult to recycle, as it’s made from multiple components with different chemical makeups, so your local curbside recycling hauler is unlikely to take it away for you.

The non-profit Carpet America Recovery Effort (CARE) is working to develop the infrastructure needed to recycle carpet efficiently across the U.S. In the meantime, you can search on Earth911 for a carpet recycler near you. CONTACTS * EWG, www.ewg.org * Green Label Plus, carpetrug.org/testing/green-labelplus * Greenguard, greenguard.org * CARE, carpetrecovery.org * Earth911, search.earth911.com

EarthTalk® is produced by Roddy Scheer & Doug Moss for the 501(c)3 nonprofit EarthTalk. Send questions to: question@earthtalk.org.

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