Aquatic Invasive Species

Harmful to human health, the environment and the economy!

Bruce Anspach, Aquatic Invasive Species Lakes Technician
Beltrami County Environmental Services
218-333-8281 email

Atop Aquatic Hitchhikers

Minnesota has defined Invasive Species as a nonnative species that: causes or may cause economic or environmental harm or harm to human health; or threatens or may threaten natural resources or the use of natural resources in the state.  These organisms were able to survive and reproduce in the new environment.  They become invasive because they have been transported to the new environment without the predators, disease, or parasites that keep them from out competing the other organisms in their native environment.   Usually they are an organism that pioneers disturb places, like boat accesses, new construction sites and freshly removed vegetation areas.

Aquatic invasive species (AIS) are a serious threat to Minnesota waters and are one of the greatest conservation challenges of our time.  The growth potential of AIS in a new ecosystem, without natural predation or disease can be explosive.  These unchecked organisms cause changes in waterbodies that are quick, permanent, and harmful to the environment, human, and economic health.

Beltrami County is striving to prevent the spread of AIS in the county and with your help we will be successful.

Beltrami County currently has two known Aquatic Invasive Species: Zebra Mussels and Starry Stonewort

Every time you leave a body of water:

Clean - aquatic plants, mud, and animals from watercraft, trailers and equipment.
Drain - all water, including bait containers, by removing drain plugs and keep drain plugs out while transporting watercraft, verify water drained. Lower the motor so you can drain water out of the lower unit.  To keep bait, refill the bait container with bottle or tap water that was not brought out onto the lake.
Dispose - of unwanted bait in the trash, never release into the wild.
Dry - for five hot/dry days, if unable then Spray/Flush all water containing compartments and trailer with very hot water.

Hot water 120 F (residential water heaters are set at this or close to this temperature) for at least 2 min or 140 F for at least 10 seconds will kill adult zebra mussels

Volunteer as AIS Ambassadors, ZM Monitoring and Lake Monitoring, educate your neighbors and others.
Schedule a talk at your meeting with the Beltrami Aquatic Invasive Species Lake Technician 218-335-8281.

Take the DNR FREE on line AIS training

DNR tips to help prevent the spread of AIS

Learn to Identify and report new AIS sightings

Beltrami County offers free decontamination during the open water season 7 days a week, by appointment call
218-760-8519 to set up a time.  The cleaning location is 2400 Middle School Drive, Bemidji, MN.


Free decontamination locations throughout the State of Minnesota