Aquatic Invasive Species
Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) are aquatic organisms nonnative to Minnesota that invade waters beyond their natural and historic range and cause economic or environmental harm or harm to human health or threaten the use of natural resources in the state. The only way to stop their spread is thorough inspection and decontamination of all boats when leaving infested waters and entering all waters. Boats traveling from lake to lake are by far the most significant vector for transporting AIS.
Minnesota waters are threatened by aquatic invasive species such as zebra mussels, Eurasian watermilfoil, and many more. It’s not just the infamous zebra mussels and Eurasian watermilfoil that we have to be concerned about. There are many more species on their way to our lakes.
It is illegal to transport any prohibited invasive species, or to launch a boat or trailer with these species attached. AIS Hitchhikers may be small and hide in live wells, bilges, inside trailer frames, inside water cooled engines, and all external trailer and boat surfaces.
Currently the most worrisome AIS in the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District are zebra mussels, carp and Eurasian watermilfoil pictured below. Click here to learn more about how carp are impacting lake quality.
There are many things that boaters and homeowners can do to stop the spread of AIS. Take a moment to click on the links below to learn what you can do:
Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers: Clean - Drain - Dispose (Steps for boaters moving between lakes)