Crow Wing County opens aquatic invasive species decontamination stations
Mobile unit also available.
The Crow Wing County aquatic invasive species decontamination stations opened for the season to help stop the spread of AIS.
The county has a permanent decontamination unit located at the Crosslake Joint Highway Maintenance Facility off Highway 3 at 13870 Whipple Drive. This location is fully staffed from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday-Sunday.
A mobile decontamination unit will be located at different public accesses throughout the county. It will be open and fully staffed from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday-Sunday. To get the location of a mobile unit, call 218-824-1055 or text CWCDECON to 72345.
Decontamination is available to boaters free of charge, with priority given to boaters who have been referred for decontamination by watercraft inspectors or law enforcement present on area landings.
Under Department of Natural Resources guidelines, boaters will be referred for decontamination when AIS or other unknown items or materials are discovered, the watercraft has been in the water for more than 24 hours, the watercraft is being transported to a new water body within 24 hours, or if undrainable or unverifiable water is present.
Watercraft decontamination consists of a very hot water rinse used to kill zebra mussels and if needed a high-pressure spray to remove material from boats, motors, trailers and personal gear. No soaps, bleaches or chemicals are used during the process. The station is operated by DNR-trained and certified inspectors who ensure the process effectively and safely removes or kills AIS.
“The decontamination stations provide a useful service to boaters,” Jessica Shea, Crow Wing County business manager said in a news release. “The entire process takes a short time and is a valuable tool for limiting the spread of AIS in our lakes and rivers."
Information about Crow Wing County AIS prevention efforts can be found at www.crowwing.us/AIS .