With floods, droughts, tornadoes, hurricanes, and other natural disasters having such an impact in recent years, the spread of invasive species is becoming an even bigger issue for fishermen and boats.
Several U.S. federal and state agencies are offering anglers advice on how to lessen the possibility of spreading invasive plants or animals while fishing and boating.
"Public awareness and action are keys to preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species," said Kim Bogenschutz, aquatic invasive species program coordinator for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. "Boaters and anglers can unintentionally transport aquatic hitchhikers if they do not take the proper precautions to prevent their spread - clean, drain, dry."
The following are a few invasive species prevention tips from Iowa Department of Natural Resources:
- clean any plants, animals, or mud from boat and equipment before leaving a water body
- drain water from all equipment (motor, live well, bilge, transom well) before leaving a water body
- dry anything that comes into contact with water (boats, trailers, equipment, boots, clothing, dogs)
- never release plants, fish, or animals into a water body unless they came out of the same area
- empty unwanted bait in the trash
Before transporting equipment to another body of water:
- spray your boat and trailer with hot, high-pressure water;
- or dry your boat and equipment for at least 5 days.