AQUATIC INVASIVE SPECIES REPORTS

AQUATIC INVASIVE SPECIES FALL 2017

Steve Lindow

Invasive species boat inspectors are hired by Becker County Soil and Water Conservation District. Most of the funding is provided by the state legislature based on the number of lakes in the county, number of accesses, and the number of access parking spots. Becker county qualified for about $320,000 to hire inspectors (35), purchase decontamination units(4), and hired  an AIS coordinator to manage the all aspects of the program. Forest Township added an additional $2500 and the Bad Medicine Lake Area Association added another $1500 for inspections on Bad Medicine Lake. Bad Medicine has been lucky to have two resident college students doing the inspections, Thomas Vlasak and Matt Lorenz. Be sure to thank them for their long hours protecting the lake. Great job guys! Thanks for your dedication over the last two-three years. We will need new inspectors next year as both of these guys will be graduating from college and moving on.

The boat inspectors have been checking boats from fishing opener through Labor Day. Weekends were covered from 5:30 am Friday mornings to about 8pm each day. During the week most mornings were covered for 3-4 hours. On the fishing opener Saturday, they checked over 100 boats in and out of the access. Most boats were in compliance of the invasive species regulations.

Again, this year we had a decontamination unit at the access from Friday morning to Sunday evening. A number of boats required decontamination because they had water in their live wells or the boat had recently been in an infested lake. I will have the statistics covering this year in the spring newsletter.

A new invasive plant called Starry Stonwort has shown up in 8 Minnesota lakes over the past two years, mostly around accesses. Stonewort is a stringy, coarse-like algae that grows in thick mats that makes watercraft travel near shore and shallow water nearly impossible! It is very tuff to remove from boat trailers because it gets smooched between the boat and the bunk of the trailer and will survive there a number of days. To kill Stonewort requires water at least 120 degrees for two minutes followed by 5 days of drying. If you bring a boat into Bad Medicine, I would strongly recommend not going into any lake known to be infested with Stonewort before coming here.

Inspectors can only do so much. As residents and boat owners, we are responsible for checking our own boats for invasive species before launching at the access or at your private launch site. The inspection needs to be done every time and be especially thorough when you are coming from a known infested water. It would be best to get a free decontamination at the access when coming from an infested water. Please be diligent with your boats.

THANK YOU FOR HELPING TO KEEP OUR LAKE FREE OF INVASIVES SPECIES.

CLEAN- DRAIN- DRY EVERY TIME !!!!!!