The threat of invasive aquatic nuisance species entering North Dakota water extends beyond boating, fishing and recreation. The North Dakota Game and Fish Department reminds duck and goose hunters that ANS is not just an angling issue.
"It goes way beyond that scope," Lynn Schlueter, N.D. Game and Fish Department special projects biologist. "All outdoor recreators, including duck hunters, can all be infected. Duck hunters have unique things with dogs, decoys and the like. They need to clean those too. It's a big responsibility."
Game and Fish regulations require that all water be drained from all watercraft before leaving the immediate launching area. Flushing and the use of disinfectants is strongly encouraged.
"Drain your boat, dry your boat and remove all aquatic vegetation," Schlueter said. "Resident and non-resident waterfowl hunters sometimes move through several bodies of water during a hunt. That's why you've got to be clean. A good hunter will take the responsibility to do the best."
Nets, decoys and decoy lines, decoy weights, watercraft, waders and dogs can all pick up aquatic nuisance species, plant or animal, and distribute it to another area.
"People need to help protect the resource they enjoy," Schlueter concluded.
Waterfowl ANS regs
Waterfowl hunters are reminded to do their part in preventing the spread of aquatic nuisance species into or within North Dakota. Waterfowl hunters must clean boats, decoys, waders and other hunting equipment before leaving a water body. Hunters must also drain water from all hunting equipment prior to leaving the water, and are encouraged to brush their hunting dogs free of mud and seeds.