Request for proposals

In November, the Midwest Glacial Lakes Partnership (MGLP) will announce its annual request for fish habitat conservation project proposals. The request for proposals will be distributed through the MGLP Newsletter; you can sign up for the newsletter here if you have not done so already. With the passage of the America’s Conservation Act, which funds our Lake Conservation Grant through the National Fish Habitat Partnership, there are new timelines and slight modifications to our request for proposals.

We support conservation projects that work toward meeting the goals and objectives set forth in the MGLP Strategic Plan to benefit glacial lake fish habitats, which include addressing all aspects of the chemical, physical, and biological components of lakes and their watersheds. We direct funding toward a wide range of aquatic conservation projects that benefit habitat for a wide range of fish species in glacial lakes. We have typically funded 3-5 projects annually between $10,000 and $75,000, but larger projects will be considered for funding up to a maximum of the approximately $360,000 expected for distribution. Past projects have been successfully implemented because the combined contributions and capabilities of many partners accomplished project goals that none of the partnering entities could accomplish on their own. If possible, projects should align with a lake management plan or the MGLP Conservation Guidelines for the lake. MGLP Conservation Guidelines for each lake can be found on the MGLP Conservation Planner.

Projects considered for funding must align with the goals and objectives of the MGLP and can range in scale from projects that affect one or more sites, lakes, or watersheds. Projects should address the processes that cause fish habitat impairments as opposed to managing or treating the symptoms of those causes. Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • projects that implement or demonstrate new approaches;
  • watershed-level nutrient control projects;
  • water quality and erosion control measures;
  • native vegetation or wetland rehabilitation;
  • natural riparian or in-lake habitat restoration and protection;
  • barrier removal for improved native fish passage;
  • fish population or watershed assessments needed for project evaluation;
  • habitat assessment, prioritization and planning for future habitat projects;
  • evaluating current and future habitat conditions;
  • projects addressing climate change adaptation or mitigation through fish habitat;
  • projects training biologists and managers on inland lake fish habitat management tools and approaches; and
  • community outreach and education on the importance of and how to better conserve glacial lake fish habitat.

Importantly, with the signing of the America’s Conservation Enhancement Act in 2020, there are new requirements in the Lake Conservation Grant application. The major change to the grant is that while the partnership prefers to maximize match in general, grant funds must be matched with at least 1:1 with nonfederal funds. Nonfederal match can include cash and/or in-kind labor, materials, equipment if there are no federal ties to those funds. State agency funds can be used for the nonfederal match if labor and/or materials are not being charged to another federal grant. State agency funds that are used to match other federal grants would not be eligible as match. Once the grant funds are matched with nonfederal funds/in-kind, an unlimited amount of federal contributions to the project are allowed. Additionally, all projects must include an outreach or education component that includes the local or regional community and projects that create or improve fishing access are desirable.

In addition to conducting independent outreach and/or education, successful applicants will be expected to work with the MGLP to coordinate media and public outreach to raise the profile of MGLP-funded projects.

Organizations eligible to apply include state and federal management agencies, non-governmental organizations, municipalities, universities, schools, private landowners, and local and tribal governments. A partial list of ineligible costs includes purchasing or leasing land, actions required by regulations, research studies (as opposed to habitat assessments), long term monitoring, and incentive payments. A full list of eligibility and requirements can be found on the request for proposals.

If you have a lake conservation project aligned with the goals and objectives of the MGLP and need financial assistance, we encourage you to submit a proposal for project funding after the request for proposals has been announced. If you have any questions, please contact Coordinator Joe Nohner at (517-284-6236 or or Gary Whelan, MGLP Steering Committee Chair, at  

Past projects


  • Assessing and conserving high-quality Michigan lakes for Cisco and Walleye (MI; $86,357)
  • Systems-level perspectives on fish habitat: capacity building workshops with lake associations across the Midwest (MGLP Region; $56,043)
  • MGLP Database Management (MGLP Region; $40,000)


  • Prairie Lake and Lizzie Lake fish passage (MN; $30,000.00)
  • Pickerel Lake shoreline restoration project (SD; $30,000.00 )
  • Nutrient and sediment loads entering Lake Wawasee: A scientific approach to assess lake restoration strategies (IN; $15,000.00)
  • MGLP Database Management (MGLP Region; $40,501)


  • Promoting Bioengineering Options for Erosion Control on Michigan Inland Lakes ($22,500)
  • Lake Carlos fish passage project (MN; $30,000)
  • Assessment of oxythermal habitat of Cisco in Minnesota lakes for prioritizing habitat protection efforts ($47,750)
  • Assessment of critical thermal fish habitat in Midwest Glacial Lakes Fish Habitat Partnership lakes: Phase II (MGLP Region; $30,000)
  • Reconnecting Mason Creek to Duck Lake Restoration Project (MI; $50,000)
  • MGLP Database Management (MGLP Region; $17,495)


  • Crane Lake Fish Passage (MN; $25,000)
  • Stearns County Shoreline Habitat Restoration Project (MN; $63,000)
  • Eagle Lake Nearshore Habitat Restoration & Septic System Discharge Mitigation with Native Vegetation (MI; $35,300)
  • Growing degree day assessment in the MGLP (MGLP Region; $22,881)


  • Habitat Assessment and Prioritization for Cisco and Walleye Lakes in the Midwest Glacial Lakes Fish Habitat Partnership (MGLP Region; $40,000)
  • Michigan Shoreland Stewards: Partnering to Protect our Inland Lakes through Outreach and Education ($11,256)


  • Island Protection Projects on Webster and Loon Lakes (IN; $25,000)
  • Knutson Dam Modernization Project Cass Lake (MN; $25,000)
  • Partnering with MGLP to Restore Habitat in St. Croix Headwaters Watershed Lakes (WI; $9,163)


  • Phase II Assessment for MGLP using Science to Evaluate Lake Health and Fish Potential in Lakes (MGLP Region; $18,875)
  • Protecting the Unique Sinkhole Lakes in the Pigeon River Country State Forest (MI; $20,504)
  • Healthy Shorelines Initiative in the Upper Tippecanoe River Watershed (IN, $25,000)


  • Greenbelt Workshops for Lakefront Property Owners in Northern Michigan ($17,200)
  • Near Shore Woody Habitat Restoration Long Lake, Chippewa County (WI; $13,756)


  • Strategic fish habitat conservation directed through GIS modeling (MGLP Region)
  • Human Disturbance Index Development for Glacial Lakes Based on Dock Frequency (MGLP Region)
  • Large Woody Habitat Rehabilitation Project in the Northern Lakes and Forest Ecoregion of Wisconsin ($18,571)
  • Protection for Sensitive Fish Habitats in Cass County, Minnesota ($28,571)


  • Lakescaping Demonstration Projects in Eastern South Dakota ($21,429)


  • Using GIS to prioritize fish habitat conservation for the Midwest Glacial Lakes Partnership (MGLP Region; $71,429)