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Wild Rice Beds Not Looking Good In Our Area

Monday, August 27th, 2012 at 6:02 am

The wild rice beds in east central Minnesota and northern Wisconsin are nearly ready for harvest. But, aerial surveys by agricultural observers show the wild rice crop isn’t looking that great.

Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission biologist Peter David says that a warm spring triggered early germination and heavy rain did some damage. David says while a few scattered beds look good, the overall crop looks poor in northwest Wisconsin. David told Wisconsin Public Radio that the beds in east-central Minnesota are in even worse shape.

The grain grows on tall stalks in shallow lakes, streams and riverbeds throughout the upper Midwest and Canada. In Wisconsin, most of rice harvest comes from Burnett, Washburn, Polk, Vilas and Oneida counties. Additional beds are managed on tribal lands.

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