Non-native animals, plants, and organisms threaten more of our waterways each year. Invasive species introduced into non-native waters, even from nearby lakes, can cause tremendous damage to native species, can drive out native plants and animals, spread new diseases, and damage water intakes and the like. Do your part to help stop the spread of AIS and protect our beautiful waterways.
- It’s not just trailered boats that can spread AIS. Live bait can be a problem – never empty bait water in the waterway.
- Some AIS can attach themselves to boat hulls, anchor lines, raw water systems, ballast systems, and virtually anything that comes in contact with the water, including the trailer. Clean, Drain & Dry all equipment.
- Clean & Drain: At the ramp, remove all visible aquatic plants, animals, and mud from all equipment before leaving. Drain the motor, bilge, livewell, and other water-containing devices before leaving water access. Many boats with ballast tanks are equipped with drain valves; consult the boat owner’s manual.
- At home, rinse equipment, boat hull, and trailer (with high pressure, hot water when possible). Rinse interior compartments of boats with low pressure, hot water (120°F). Flush the motor with hot water (120°F) for 2 minutes (or according to the owner’s manual). Be sure to rinse inside trailer frames where water can collect. Detergents, disinfectants, or chemicals are not needed, and their use could cause other damage.
- Dry: Allow everything to air-dry for at least five days, or wipe thoroughly with a towel before reuse.
These five simple steps can make a difference – be sure to tell others to Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers! Visit these sites for more information: