Steelhead marking effort has been removed from the budget
Michigan DNRE has applied for two mass marking trailers through the Great Lakes Fish and Wildlife Restoration Act, as a regional project. These will actually be owned by the USFWS, and will be available to all Great Lakes agencies for marking of fish. The state hopes to have them both in state and running for next springs stocking efforts. Most of the state hatcheries have been upgraded to accept these trailers (electrical upgrades).
This equipment could be used to differentiate between wild and hatchery stocks for regulation purposes. Michigan would benefit the most doing this if all the other management agencies also did this.
However, Steelhead marking effort has been removed from the budget for several years now intermittently, due to budget shortfalls. Fisheries managers recognize that steelhead anglers like having the fish clipped to assist in personal harvest preferences (wild vs. hatchery), but without the other state agencies assisting in this effort it is an expensive operation with little biological benefit.