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News November 14, 2017  RSS feed

Waterfowl hunters reminded to help prevent spread of invasive species

AUSTIN – With duck hunting season getting underway in most of the state in early November, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) is reminding waterfowl hunters to clean, drain and dry boats and equipment before traveling from lake to lake to help avoid spreading invasive species like giant salvinia and zebra mussels.

“Invasive species like giant salvinia can quickly grow to cover expanses of fresh water, which can block access for hunters to prime waterfowl hunting areas,” said John Findeisen, TPWD aquatic invasive species team lead.

Findeisen noted all equipment that comes into contact with the water is capable of harboring invasive species – including waders, boats, trailers and decoys – and can quickly spread them to new places and destroy aquatic habitats.

TPWD regulations also require boaters to drain all water from their boat and onboard receptacles before leaving or approaching a public body of fresh water.

• CLEAN: Before leaving the ramp area, do a walk-around inspection. Remove any plants, mud and debris from the boat, trailer and gear. Be sure to check your boots, dogs, decoys, and anything else that was in the water.

• DRAIN: Drain your boat, motor and other water-retaining compartments. Keep your drain plugs out until you are home.

• DRY: Let your boat and gear dry completely before entering another waterbody.

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