HELENA – With summer half over, more than 50,000 watercraft have been inspected at Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks aquatic invasive species inspection stations around the state.
“The wet spring delayed a lot of boating activity, but boaters are enjoying the water now that hot and dry weather is here,” said FWP’s AIS Bureau Chief Thomas Woolf. “Get out on the water and have fun but remember to stop at any open watercraft inspection station that you encounter in your travels.”
To date, 12 boats with invasive mussels have been intercepted in Montana. Most recently three boats with mussels were found at the Anaconda inspection station on July 18th.
“It’s important that people adhere to the watercraft regulations and get their boats inspected when they come into the state and when they cross the Continental Divide into the Columbia River Basin,” Woolf said.
Watercraft must also be inspected when entering into the Flathead River Basin.
Additionally, FWP’s AIS monitoring program is in full swing. More than 500 samples have been taken across the state for aquatic invasive mussels, and analysis is ongoing. So far, no positive samples for invasive mussels have been detected this year.
Watercraft leaving Tiber and Canyon Ferry reservoirs must be inspected and decontaminated at an FWP decontamination station.
Clean, Drain, Dry – every time. Be sure your boat is clean, drained and dry every time it leaves the water.
Make sure to clean off all weeds and debris, drain all water and dry all compartments.
Pay close attention to live wells, ballast tanks and anywhere that can hold water.
Do your part to help protect Montana’s waterways.
For more information about Montana’s efforts to defend against aquatic invasive species, visit cleandraindrymt.com and the “Protect Our Waters Montana” Facebook page.