Boaters will likely notice more boating activity on this 4th of July weekend; they may also notice more activity near the boat ramp. For the 7th straight year, the DNR and Clean Boats Clean waters volunteers across the state will be spending time helping boaters understand what they need to do to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species during the annual 4th of July Landing Blitz.
“The Landing Blitz is always a great event for both boaters and our Clean Boats Clean Waters volunteers,” says Tim Campbell, aquatic invasive species specialist for UW-Extension and the DNR. “This coordinated effort makes it so volunteers are part of something big, while boaters learn what they can do to protect Wisconsin’s waters from harmful invasive species.”
The event is certainly something big – the number of boats inspected during the 2014 Landing Blitz comprised of over 10% of all the boats inspected during the 2014 boating season. Any other weekend during the 2014 boating season likely contributed about half the amount.
In addition to working with boaters unfamiliar with the prevention steps, Landing Blitz participants will be rewarding boaters seen already practicing the important prevention steps of “Inspect your boat, remove plants and animals, drain water from live wells and buckets and never move live fish.” The towel serves as a good reminder to take action to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species after a day of boating.
With a steadily growing base of Landing Blitz partners, the 2015 Landing Blitz could be the most successful yet. Whether you are a boater or a volunteer this weekend, take a minute to “Inspect, Remove, Drain, Never Move” and celebrate our state’s collective efforts to Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers!