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Environment

Lake Lansing North Park Hosts Event As Part Of Annual Invasive Species Awareness Campaign

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Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers
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Laws in Michigan madate the removal of all aquatic organisms, including plants, from watercraft and trailers before launching or transporting.

More than 54 boat landing events are taking place throughout the state to mark this year’s Aquatic Invasive Species Awareness Week, including one at Lake Lansing North Park.

Aquatic Invasive Species Awareness Week is from June 27 through July 4.

The campaign's goal is to spread awareness about the impacts harmful, non-native aquatic plants and animals have on Michigan’s ecosystems, tourism and economy.

The events are a part of the eighth annual Landing Blitz where representatives of state departments and local partners like lake associations give boaters tips to prevent the spread.

Laws in Michigan mandate the removal of all aquatic organisms, including plants, from watercraft and trailers before launching or transporting. Other required measures include removing all drain plugs and drain water from bilges, ballast tanks and live wells before transporting a watercraft as well as disposing of unused bait in the trash, not in the water.

Boaters can take these additional actions to prevent the spread of invasive species:

  • Clean boats, trailers and equipment by removing plants, debris and mud before leaving the access areas
  • Dispose of material in a trash receptacle or otherwise away from the water body, if possible
  • Wash boats and trailers before leaving the access area, if possible, or at a nearby car wash or at home
  • Dry boats and trailers before leaving the access area, if possible, or at a nearby car wash or at home
  • Dry boats and equipment for five days before launching into a different water body
  • Disinfect live wells and bilges with a bleach solution (1/2 cup of bleach to 5 gallons of water)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KlTfLBT4eb4
This is Susan Andrews’ second year volunteering for the event at Lake Lansing.

She says volunteers will inspect watercraft, pass out information about invasive species and hand out towels to clean boats.

“Lakes in Michigan are all threatened by aquatic invasive species, and it can cost so much more money once one gets established to get rid of it.”

Andrews says Lake Lansing has numerous aquatic invasive species including Zebra Mussels, Eurasian Watermilfoil and Starry Stonewort.

“I think it’s really important and that’s why there are three of us volunteers who are going to do this on Saturday. And we all love this lake and do not want [any more] invasive species [to] come in.” 

The Landing Blitz website has a list of education events happening throughout the Great Lakes region.

McKoy's story is brought to you to as part of a partnership between WKAR and Michigan State University's Knight Center for Environmental Journalism.

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