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Additional Aquatic Invasive Species Information and Advice for Boaters Q&A

What advice can you provide to individual boaters concerning measures they can take to ensure that their boats do not transport aquatic invasive species?

As mentioned previously, the best way to ensure that boats, trailers or other equipment do not transport AIS is to make sure that they are completely dry prior to use in another waterbody. A minimum drying time of 5 days is recommended, although longer periods may be required depending upon the season and weather conditions. Recommended drying times for various seasons and locations within New York State can be found at Boaters and anglers are also encouraged to download "A New York Boaters Guide to Cleaning, Drying and Disinfecting Boating Equipment (PDF)" (340 KB) from the DEC website.

We maintain a boat launch as part of a small lake association and want to make certain that boats and trailers do not introduce AIS to our lake. What do you recommend?

Image of a boat steward inspecting a boat.
Lake George Association

Train and employ a boat launch steward. A steward can determine if a boat is drained and dry before launching and detect any AIS that might be clinging to the boat and trailer. If AIS are detected, the boater can be directed to use the appropriate method to address the problem before being permitted to launch. We also recommend that your lake association install an invasive species disposal station and post signage and other information on AIS. Plans and template signs can be found on the DEC website.

What is DEC doing to combat the spread of AIS in New York State?

Image of an invasive species drop box
Invasive species drop boxes provide a place for
boaters to discard aquatic invasive species.

As noted previously, DEC is currently involved in an effort to identify plant and animal species that could be problematic in New York State and regulate the sale of these species. DEC is also developing regulations that will prohibit boats and trailers that have not been drained or that have AIS clinging to them from launching at or leaving DEC facilities. DEC was also the first agency in the country to install Nuisance Invasive Species Disposal Stations at its boat launches. These stations provide a dedicated location for disposal of AIS and also serve as a billboard reminding anglers and boaters to clean, drain and dry their boats. DEC is also collaborating with DMV by including a tip strip concerning AIS spread prevention in every trailer registration reminder. Additionally, DEC is currently in the process of updating the New York State Invasive Species Plan. This plan will guide future invasive species control efforts in New York State.

Does DEC provide signage or other information concerning AIS spread prevention?

Image of a Before You Leave sign for boat ramps.

Information concerning AIS in New York State and methods to prevent their spread can be found at the DEC website. Information provided includes the downloadable publication "A New York Boaters Guide to Cleaning, Drying and Disinfecting Boating Equipment." Various signs reminding boaters to Clean, Drain and Dry their boats can also be downloaded.

How Can I Help?

DEC will never have enough enforcement personnel to watch over every potential source of AIS or every waterbody into which they might be introduced 24 hrs per day, 365 days per year. It is important that you report any illegal activities associated with the purchase, sale or introduction of AIS in New York State. If you find an AIS in your waterbody, please report it to your nearest DEC office in case this location is not known. You should also consider volunteering for your local Partnership for Regional Invasive Species Management (PRISM) @ (link to the right) to help this private-public partnership to better address AIS issues in your region. Always make others aware of the significance of this issue and the role they play in preventing additional spread of AIS. Most importantly, if you are a boater please be sure to Clean, Drain and Dry your boat before using it.

Additional Questions and Answers

Questions and answers on how aquatic invasive species are spread

Questions and answers on cleaning and disinfection techniques for boaters

Questions and answers on aquatic species of concern for New York boaters