Montana’s watercraft inspectors intercepted the 27th mussel-fouled vessel for the year. Last Sunday, vacationers traveling from Michigan to Glacier National Park with a kayak strapped on their van stopped at Nashua inspection station where inspectors found a zebra mussel attached to the kayak’s hull. The kayak had last been in Michigan’s Lake Cadillac, a known mussel-infested waterbody. Inspectors thoroughly decontaminated the kayak before sending the vacationers on their way.
The Nashua watercraft inspection station is managed by the McCone Conservation District.
“Our inspectors work hard at their job” said Diane Black, the district administrator. “We want to protect our water resources from dangerous invasive species and remind everyone to clean, drain and dry their boats.”
Montana has inspected over 115,000 vessels so far this season, far surpassing last year’s total number of inspections.
“Non-motorized boats are at risk of transporting aquatic invasive species” said AIS Bureau Chief Tom Woolf. “Even boats traveling between waters in Montana can transport invasive snails or weeds.”
Watercraft owners must stop at ALL open inspection stations. Watercraft coming into Montana from out of state must be inspected prior to launching. Non-residents bringing watercraft from out of state, both motorized and non-motorized, must purchase a Vessel AIS Prevention Pass before launching on state waters. The Vessel AIS Prevention Pass is valid until the end of the year and can be purchased at any FWP office or online.
To learn more, go to CleanDrainDryMT.com or call the FWP Aquatic Invasive Species Bureau at 406-444-2440.