Outdoor Wisconsin | Program | #3401

(bright tones) – We’re kicking off
our 34th season here at the North Point Lighthouse in
Milwaukee County’s Lake Park. In just a few minutes, Deb
Wolniak joins a group of women for a Wild Women Outdoors Skills
Workshop at Horicon Marsh. And then Jeff Kellum looks
at aquatic invasive species in a lake in Washington County. But first, I’ll join
a group of kids for an ice fishing outing on
Blackhawk Lake in Iowa County. I’m Dan Small, and it’s time once again
for Outdoor Wisconsin. ♪ Summer to fall,
winter to spring ♪ From Green Bay to
where the St. Croix sings ♪ From Kettle Moraine
to Superior shore ♪ Outdoor Wisconsin,
Outdoor Wisconsin – There’s a pretty
good breeze here on top of the lighthouse
here at North Point. Lake Michigan stays
open most of the year, but by mid winter there’s
usually pretty good ice on most of the harbors, so
people can walk out and fish. Most inland lakes in Wisconsin
offer good ice fishing too. And last winter, I
joined a group of guides from Wolf Pack Adventures, as they introduced some
youngsters to the joys of hard water angling at the Dean Olson Memorial
Fisheree on Blackhawk Lake. (sled scraping) – This event is a branch
off from what we used to do during this day every year. The Dean Olson
Memorial Fisheree, this year is the 40th annual,
my grandpa was Dean Olson. He was the creator of this
event many, many years ago. And the last few years,
I took the role of taking kids fishing, and
never to this extent, never taken 25 kids out,
which it’s been a blessing that’s for sure. But I’ve also got more
help, and Patrick Kalmerton with Wolf Pack Adventures,
they did a lot of, a lot of it with me too. – Oh there, I messed up,
see that fish on the bottom? Right on the bottom, see
how that is disruptive? – [Trevor] This event, because
of the attraction we have with all the people, generally, it’s usually a
bunch of people come out, the adults come out, and
we want to kind of change the role of what this day
can mean for the Lion’s Club, to be more of a
family friendly event. And we’ve definitely
accomplished that, and hopefully in the
next couple of years, we can, we’ve even just
talked about maybe having a wall tent out here, or
we can have a big loop, inside, warm all the time, and being able to control
things a little better. – Do you see all those
fish right down below it? See that Jig up on top? See me up there? And all those wiggles down
below it, those are all fish. When we found out
that there was a kid’s fisheree, we
wanted to be involved. You know, going back, all
the way back to forage when, I was knee high to a
grasshopper, my father was always doing the youth
ice fishing at that time. – When you jig, it
kinda looks like a tail. So it kinda looks like
it’s swimming in the water, so that’s gonna
attract the fish. – The the in-line reels
and the electronics and, it’s a very exciting
thing, to be able to go out on the ice actually enjoy
it without struggling and fighting your
equipment at all times. Which brings it back to the
kids, that’s our future. That’s our future coming
up, that’s where I started, that’s where you started,
that is where the passion started to grow, and to be
able to be involved in that as far as the Wolf Pack
itself and myself being a part of that Wolf Pack team, and it’s giving back to
what was given to me. Holy mackerel huh? That’s a good fish,
what did he bite on? A jig, where did he bite it? – Mm mm. – Right in the lip, huh? That’s what you tell
people when they ask you where you were fishing, I
was fishing in the water. Where did you catch it? Right there? Good job buddy. – Okay, so we’ll go over
here, we’ll talk to Trevor, we’ll try to get
you guys set up, kinda show you what’s going
on and try to get you guys catching some fish okay,
how does that sound? – [Boy] Good. – Has anybody ice fished before? Perfect. – The different stations
that we have set up today with the help of a lot of
the different volunteers, is we started up at
the Wolf Pack trailer, where it’s fish identification. We learn what’s in the lake,
what the size limits are, so we’re within the
rules and regulations. Then we also go through safety, knowing how to get out
if we have some problems, you know if something
unfortunate does happen, that they are aware of
what they need to do. – Every lake has
different species, so what about panfish, how many panfish can
we keep on this lake? – Like 25. – 25, okay it’s 25. (drill grinding) – [Man] Good job. – [Patrick] A second station is going to be
drilling the holes, so we’re gonna use the
jiffies and we’re gonna have all the kids drilling
the holes and the safety and things like that. – And then you shut it off,
push the hole and it’s done. – [Patrick] All the kids
can hold the jiffy drills and they can drill the
holes if they would like to, and just, it’s exciting for them to be able to drill
the hole, you know. – [Woman] Here
because then I can see if a fish will come up. – [Patrick] After that
we learn the electronics, we learn on how to
use the electronics, how to read the electronics,
things like that, to be able to assist and
use today’s technology to be able to be successful. After that, then we learn the
different jigging techniques and we continue, just evolving. – Jigger on the bottom and
you’re gonna stir up that dirt and you might attract more fish. – [Patrick] And we go
through the tip-up sessions, of how to set a tip-up,
and what a tip-up is. There’s a lot of kids, or
parents for that matter, that just aren’t aware
of the capabilities or the functionalities
of the tip-up, so we go through that with them. And what do we yell
if the flag goes up? – [Kids] Tip-up. – Tip-up, good job guys. So you guys at least had fun? Better than sitting at
home watching TV right? – [Child] Right. – [Patrick] And then the
sixth day, as soon as just a warden going
through the different things that are going on on
the lakes and stuff like that. – If you get a big one. – Hopefully, that’s the
goal, catch a big fish. – So the tip is just
moving just a little bit. – Once you see that
rod tip go down, just raise it up and try to set
that hook on the fish, okay? – You know my grandpa, when
he started this 40 years ago, I was just, I wasn’t even a
thought obviously, I’m only 29. But as years grew and I grew
up, I was the kid on the lake, who didn’t have
anybody to go out with, and I would fish and I was like, if I caught that one fish
today, that was my day. And then I’d go up and
get some hot chocolate. And you know, as
time progressed, I got older, I got in
with some friends who, you know we started
learning fishing on our own and if I had programs
like this available to me when I was younger, who
knows what we could be, and it’s never too late to
start a program like this, and what a better, there’s
no better day really to do it than to have all the
people already out here, you already have the
natural exposure. So if we put on an
event like this, it’s just raising more
awareness of our club and what we intent
to do with our club. – This is great, if we don’t
get the next generation involved and get them out
here and excited about coming out and going fishing, we might not have as many
fisherman in the future, so it’s great program. – Ice fishing
isn’t for everyone, but if you’ve never tried
it, there are plenty of opportunities to
learn, and we’ll tell you where to get more
information later in the show. Many native plants are edible, and some have
medicinal properties. Now you shouldn’t
pick plants here in the North Point
Lighthouse Rain Garden, but on some public lands,
picking wild edibles or medicinal plants is
allowed and even encouraged. Deb Wolniak joined a group
of women at Horicon Marsh in Dodge County for a Wild
Women Outdoor Skills Workshop led by DNR naturalist
Liz Herzmann. – [Deb] Welcome
to Horicon Marsh, today you are all going
to be participating in our Wild Women Workshop. Basically the point of
today is to get you familiar with some simple, basic
outdoor skills and hopefully give you an excuse and a
reason to get back outside and explore those
skills little bit more. So arm out, draw back, pointer finger to the
corner of your mouth, good, very good, hand position,
and whenever you are ready. – Yes.
– Excellent. – So this Wild Women
Workshop came about because we had a lot of people
that we knew were kinda interested or we had
these similar programs for kids, and they parents were
there in the background and they were like, oh
I want to do this too, and I want to do this, but the kids were
getting all the fun. And so we said well why not do
a class with this for adults where they get to be the
ones to try out these skills and have that fun as well. Because even if you are adults, you are never too old to
learn, and you’re never too old to have a little bit of
fun while you’re at it. So we have a lot of willow
trees that are growing around the marsh, they
like kinda soupy soils and willows are actually,
not necessarily an edible, but a medicinal plant. So it was used back in
the day for pain relief, so it’s got a really
bitter tasting bark. And so if you would just
snap some off and chew on it, it’s like a natural
aspirin, so to speak. So this plant right
here that’s growing, I’ll pull off a leaf
for some people. It doesn’t have it’s
orange flowers yet, does anybody know what this is? So this is called jewel weed, anybody familiar with that? Okay, it’s gonna start blooming probably in the
next couple weeks, it’s gonna get these beautiful
little orange flowers and if you crush up these leaves and kinda make a
paste out of it, it will help with
anything that itches. So it’s a natural remedy
for stinging needles, you just kinda rub it right
on, same thing with poison ivy. (strumming guitar) Holy cow, oh wow. Oh I know what this is too. I think it’s a Cecropia Moth. It’s super cool, look how
well he blends in though. – I chose this class
for a new adventure and to learn some more
about the outdoors. I came here when I’m
normally not outdoors because I think it’s a good
thing to do for people, I think it’s out, I mean
everything is outdoors, everything is here, we got
the Horicon Marsh right by us, we need to go and
use our resources and go explore what we have. – I was impressed
very much by that fact that there was a lot
of women out here that were a little unsure
on some of these skills and they had never
tried them before, but every single one of
them took the opportunity we gave them to try it out. And that’s all we can ask, and they found out that
many of these skills were actually very easy to do, and they weren’t as
intimidating as they thought they might be, which is
the whole point of today, to get people
comfortable and familiar with some of these simple
and basic outdoor skills that you really can use
in your everyday life. We’re talking about getting
a fire truly started from scratch, you need to
start thinking smaller, okay. And so what you’re
gonna think about first is what we call your
tinder, which are you’re really, really fine materials. So, little bits of plant
fibers that are brown and dead, little bits of leaves. Okay, things that are gonna
catch fire super, super easily. From there, you get your
tinder, which are you’re small, teeny, tiny branches. So again it doesn’t seem like
much as far as fire-starting, but a flame that is fairly
small, is not going to start a large log on fire, it
needs these little pieces to start it, to
just kinda baby it. And from there you
can work up to pieces that are maybe yay big,
and then if you want you can get into your
more campfire type wood. Also think about where you
are going to put your match. Okay, a lot of
people and especially when I do this with kids,
they want to put their match right on the top of
whatever they do. You want to go underneath, let it bend, have that
opportunity to flare up and start burning everything
that’s on the outside. If you put it right on top, it’s gonna flare up and
it has nothing to burn. A couple people always ask me, what techniques do you use
as far as like a structure? Some of the big ones
that I typically use are a lean-to, so
imagine you know, a little bit bigger size stick, putting your tinder
underneath here and then leaning, kindling
up, kinda like a shelter. Then you’ve got that,
and you’ve already got something natural that’s
acting possibly as a windbreak, if you’ve got a
really windy day, something along those lines. Okay so a lean-to is
certainly a possibility, log cabin, anybody ever played
with Lincoln Logs before? Okay, so basically that, that log cabin, okay and then the favorite for most
people is the tepee. So just a general A-frame type, I like the log cabin tepee
combo, that’s my favorite. (match striking) – [Everyone] Oh, alright. – [Woman] I think
we have a winner. – I had a lot of fun today, it was definitely being
outside in the Horicon Marsh and learning all this new stuff. – [Woman] It’s workin’. – [Elizabeth] It’s
goin’, it’s goin’. And you can kinda try and
wrap some of those fibers around a little
bit, there we go. And if it gets a little too
hot, put it back in the tin and hold the tin. There you go, you gotta
have a successful fire sometime in the day. (applause) – It’s always good
to do something new, and so it’s one of
those things just step off the couch, you know step out of your house and just come out and
enjoy the great outdoors. – Well my day job is working
with at-risk students, and letting them know there is
a world beyond the classroom and beyond Beaver Dam,
beyond where we live. To be able to come out and
see there are other things as you get older to do. – So we see quite often, that
when people come out here to any natural resource, and
have a positive experience, it’s something they
remember for a lifetime, and it’s going to make
them want to come out and either have that experience
again at the same place or broaden that
experience to other places throughout the state and
throughout the country. And we’re very lucky here
in Wisconsin that we have a plethora of places that we
can go and enjoy the outdoors, and why not utilize
what we have right here in our own backyards? (strumming guitar) – We’ll tell you how
you can learn more about outdoor programs at Horicon
Marsh later in the show. The heart of any lighthouse
is the fresnel lamps, a candle in the night
for the steamboat trade as songwriter Warren Nelson
put it in his classic, Keeper of the Light, from
the musical, Riding the Wind. As the light signaled
danger to sailors before the days of GPS, today aquatic invasives
are signs of danger to all who use our lakes. Since the 1800s, more than
180 exotic invasive species have found their way
into the Great Lakes. Most of them carried in the
ballast of seagoing ships, and from there, some make
it into our inland lakes, where they can disrupt
the natural ecosystem. To learn more about this threat, Jeff Kelm spent a day on
the water with Brad Stecker, aquatic invasive
species coordinator, with Washington and
Waukesha Counties. (strumming guitar) – So an aquatic invasive species is a plant, animal, or disease that can get introduced
to a water body and it can actually
start to take over. Some of the reasons that
aquatic invasive species take over, one can be that
they reproduce quicker than the native species
that are already here. Some other reasons are that
they grow in a different time of the year, so they can actually take
over during a different time of the year, and then
when other species try and grow and reproduce, the space
that they use for that is already taken up by
the invasive species. Usually invasive species and
aquatic invasive species, they tend to have really
detrimental effects on ecosystems because of
how fast they can take over and how they can displace
native flora and fauna. (strumming guitar) If there is a lake that we
don’t have any data for, we’ll make sure to
get that lake surveyed to know what’s in it,
to get a baseline. It’s where you go to five
random points on the lake, and you snorkel for about a
half an hour at each point. And you usually go
to the boat launch, because that’s a
highly disturbed area, so that’s where usually
you’ll find the majority of invasive species, and
we’ll collect every kind of plant specimen that we find. We’ll take that to our lab. We want to know what invasive
species are in the lakes, an then we want to make
sure that they’re verified, if they’re in the lakes. Otherwise we’re looking
for early detection of other invasive species. So these are called Zebra
Mussels, these are mollusks. And the genus Dreissena, this is one single
mussel right here. You can see they’re called
Zebra Mussels because of the zebra stripes
that they have, that’s where they
get their name from. They’re native to the
Black and Caspaian Seas, out east, and they
actually got here from ballast water, moving
in the bottom of ships, moving across the seas. And then they made
their way down through the St. Lawrence Seaway
into Lake Michigan, now boats traveling
from Lake Michigan to our inland water bodies
actually brought them into our inland water bodies. There are in about
200 lakes in Wisconsin out of about 15,000 lakes. So really they’re in a
small percentage of lakes and you’ll find them most often in really populated areas. So you’ll find these
a less up north, you’ll find them more down
in Southeast Wisconsin. They’re filter feeders, so basically they’ll
open up underwater like, we’ll take this one right here. It’ll open up underwater,
and it’ll have a vent here and a vent here, and
it’ll suck in one vent and blow out water
in the other vent. Now any little
amoeba or any little you know, little
tiny critter, animal, anything small enough to
get sucked into that vent will stick into the
Zebra Mussel’s gut and then what will
come out is water without all those little
pieces of whatever in it. So, all the little
amoebas and everything get sucked up and it stays in there, and clean water comes out. Zebra Mussels will
filter about a liter, an entire liter water a day. Because of that, you’ll
find water infested with Zebra Mussels will
get much more clear. And a lot of people will think, oh it’s really to
have more clear water, it looks nice, you know. But what happens when you get
water that gets really clear is plant growth
really takes off. And plant growth, the
plants will start growing all the way to the
surface of the water and then there you go, you
can’t recreate anymore, you can’t go water
skiing as easily because you have all
this plant growth. So really it’s good to have
a little bit murky water because it kinda suppresses
the plants from growing all the way to the surface
of the water sometimes. When Zebra Mussels come in, you’ll find that that
kinda changes the ecosystem for the worst. So you can see this ridge here, it’s really sharp, so
people can actually cut their feet on
them, they’ll attach to a lot of surfaces,
like docks and piers. So, and rocks, so if
you jump in the water and you step on this,
you can actually get a pretty serious cut. And so they’re actually a
danger to humans as well. The Eurasian Watermilfoil is a plant that, it is
pretty commonly introduced by boat trailers,
it’ll get wrapped up on wheel wells, or it’ll get
wrapped up on the trailer and it can actually last
outside of the water for up to seven days. – So this is Eurasian
Watermilfoil, it’s an invasive species,
not to be confused with Northern Watermilfoil,
which is a native species. The way you can
tell the difference is by grabbing a leaflet,
and this is a leaflet, and counting each
little leaflet here. So, Northern will
have less than 12, and Eurasian will
have more than 12. Another quality about
Eurasian Watermilfoil is that if you break it, if
it’s fragmented like that, it can form it’s own plant, so these are adventitious roots that reach out to grab
the nutrients inside
their own plant. So a lot of times when
people have harvester boats, like mechanical harvesters, they think they’re
doing a good thing by cutting up paths of weeds
for boats to go through, but really they’re
just spreading and
making more plants, more Eurasian
Watermilfoil plants. – There’s one new
invasive species that was just recently found in 2014
in Southeastern Wisconsin in the Muskego area, and
since then it’s been found in a few different lakes, I
think it’s up to six lakes now, and Door County, so in
Lake Michigan as well, and it’s called
Starry Stonewort. And what Starry Stonewort is, it’s a macrophytic algae that has a small
reproductive structure that hangs out under the soil. So because it hangs
out under the soil it’s protected from a lot
of the treatments and stuff that you could traditionally
do to treat algae. So this is one of the
reproductive structures called a balboa, that is on, that grows underwater
on the Starry Stonewort. So you can see how small it
is compared to my thumb here, but you can see it’s
very star-shaped and that’s called balboa, if this is on a
mullet or an anchor or it attaches to a boat
and spreads to another lake, this can actually cause the
growth of a new population of Starry Stonwort. Now Starry Stonewort is
only known to be in six lakes in Wisconsin, so we’re really trying to
prevent these from spreading from lake to lake. Some really simple steps to take to stop the spread
of invasive species is to first of all inspect
your boat and trailer when you leave the launch. If you see plant
fragments or Zebra Mussels attached to your boat, just
make sure to remove them. And that’s the second step, so you wanna inspect, and
then remove whatever you see. You want to make sure
you drain your live well and drain all the
water out of your boat, and then never move
plants or animals from one water body
to another water body. (strumming guitar) If you’re down here,
a lot of the times a few boaters say, ah
well it’s really common around this area, or
it’s really common it’s in all the lakes, but really invasive
species are only in fractions of the
lakes in Wisconsin. So much of the water
here is really pristine, so even by protecting
it from coming out of one of these lakes that
we know it’s already in, you’re really
protecting the other, you know, 14,000
lakes in Wisconsin, which is a really important
job for all voters to do. – To learn more about
aquatic invasives in this week’s other segments, visit the Outdoor
Wisconsin Facebook page, or log on to and click on Outdoor Wisconsin. Well next time, we’ll
visit Robert Schutlz’s blacksmith shop
in Vernon County, attend a senior softball
game in Madison, and take you on a winter
bow hunt in Saint Cloud. Saying goodbye from the
North Point Lighthouse here in Milwaukee County’s
Lake Park, I’m Dan Small. Join us again next week
for Outdoor Wisconsin. (strumming guitar)