Bismarck, ND (KFYR) – Governor Doug Burgum has declared May 15-21 as Troubled Aquatic Species Awareness Week in North Dakota. Mike Anderson demonstrates in this week’s clip from North Dakota Outdoors.
Troublesome aquatic species are non-native plants, animals, or pathogens that can affect the ecology of our lakes and rivers and the economic and recreational value of those waterways. It is for this reason that Governor Borgum has declared the third week of May as Aquatic Awareness Week.
“This week is designed to help raise public awareness of nuisance aquatic species and the steps we can take to prevent them from making their way into our waterways,” said Ben Hollen, NDGF’s Coordinator of Troubled Aquatic Species.
The North Dakota Department of Fishing and Fishing and several partner agencies are working to raise awareness this week.
“We are going to have partners issuing press releases, organizing radio events, and a lot of press material for the audience. So stay tuned during the week and learn a little bit about pesky aquatic species and what you can do to prevent them from moving through our waterways,” Hollen said.
In the big picture, our water bodies are in pretty good shape, but we have quite a few ANS in our lakes and rivers.
“We have common carp that’s scattered all over the state. We’ve got silver, bighead, grass carp. We’ve got a little bit of Eurasian water moss, curly mussels, zebra mussels, and then a dash of blooms too,” Hollen said.
Hollen said his crews are focused on educating the public to help stop the introduction and spread of bothersome aquatic species.
“We use mechanisms such as digital marketing, social media, print advertising, radio, and television to spread the word about awareness of troublesome aquatic species, and to drain public and clean drainage. We also have 11 to 15 waterboat inspectors here at North Dakota Game and Fish who inspect boats actively before they go into our water bodies,” Hollen said.
To do your part, follow these suggestions.
“Remove all plants, any organic matter, get rid of any mud and make sure your boat is completely dry. There is no water left, and that includes ballast water or any live well or anything like that,” Hollen said. , drain that water, wipe everything up, and really reduce the risk of the species spreading.”
For more information on pesky aquatic species, visit gf.nd.gov
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