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Crow Wing County preps for fishing opener, aquatic invasive species

Submitted Photo A boat is decontaminated at the station at the Crosslake-Crow Wing County Joint Highway Maintenance Facility in Crosslake.

The Crow Wing County Land Services Department's 2019 aquatic invasive species program is ramping up to coincide with the fishing opener Saturday, May 11.

The 2019 AIS plan focuses on the top priorities identified by area lake associations, citizens and business interests, including boat landing inspections, decontamination units, treatment of Eurasian watermilfoil, education and awareness, and innovative special projects.

Invasive species are a direct serious threat to local economies and recreationists accessing public waters, and preventing and managing the spread of harmful invasive species is up to everyone, county officials said in a news release.

Watercraft inspectors will be at boat landings within the county beginning Friday, May 10. Draining all water, removing plants, mud and other debris, and inspecting trailers and watercraft when moving from lake to lake can minimize the risk of spreading AIS. Additionally, 21 days of drying time is needed before relocating docks, lifts or swim rafts into a different water body.

"Crow Wing County is home to some of Minnesota's best fishing and boating waters," Environmental Services Supervisor Jacob Frie said in a news release. "With our 2019 AIS plan, Crow Wing County is leading Minnesota counties in the effort to limit and prevent the spread (of) AIS in our waters."

Visit www.crowwing.us/ais for more information about the county AIS plan, which includes interactive maps showing data on water quality, AIS and county efforts to protect water resources.

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