Written by Suzie Townley on 06 June 2017.
It is fishing and boating season, and the rivers and lakes that are infested with Aquatic Nuisance Species (ANS) are getting closer and closer to us. Hillsdale is infested with zebra mussels; BridgewaterLake in Edgerton is infested with Eurasian watermilfoil; Black Bob Pond in Olathe with Hydrilla; the Kansas River (Kaw) is infested with Asian carp & zebra mussels; the Marais des Cygnes from Melvern Reservoir dam to the Missouri state line with zebra mussels .
There are 7 pages on the KDWP website of infested waters. All of the following information has come from the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks website
Aquatic Nuisance species can:
- Diminish food supplies and degrade habitat for other species
- Reduce numbers and variety of desirable fish
- Reduce fishing and other recreational opportunities
- Lower property valuesFoul water lines, clog intakes, burn out pumps, and damage boat motors
- And so much more!
IF THEY’RE ALIVE, LEAVE ‘EM WHERE YOU CATCH ‘EM
Don’t move live fish between bodies of water or up streams!
Since aquatic nuisance species often hitchhike with unsuspecting people, moving live fish between bodies of water can lead to serious environmental problems or ruin the fishing and boating for years to come.
Not only is moving live fish a bad idea for the environment, it may also be illegal.
Kansas regulations state:
- You must use wild-caught bait fish only on the body of water where taken, except that bluegill and green sunfish collected from non-designated aquatic nuisance waters may be possessed or used as live bait anywhere in the state.
- You must not move live fish from a body of water with an aquatic nuisance species (ANS) designation
- You must use bait fish taken on department lands and waters only where taken, except that bluegill and green sunfish collected from non-designated aquatic nuisance waters may be possessed or used as live bait anywhere in the state
- You must not stock or release wildlife on navigable publicly-owned waters and federal reservoirs
- You must drain livewells and bilges and remove drain plugs from all vessels before they are transported on a public highway
- You must not import, possess, or release the live wildlife species that are listed in the regulation without a permit