Aquatic Invasive Species

What are Aquatic Invasive Species?

  • Plants, animals and other organisms that have been introduced into an aquatic ecosystem (lake, river, wetland or ocean) where they do not naturally occur
  • Lacking natural pathogens or predators that keep them under control in their native habitats
  • Spread rapidly and extensively through waterways
  • Difficult, if not impossible, to control and can form thick patches over large areas
  • Negatively impact biodiversity, species at risk, fisheries productivity, water quality and power generation


Aquatic invasive species are typically introduced and spread by:

  • Improper disposal of aquarium water, plants and pets
  • Planting invasive species near aquatic and riparian ecosystems
  • Attached to boat motors, trailers and recreational gear

What are the impacts of aquatic invasive species?

  • Reduce wildlife habitat for nesting, food, cover and breeding
  • Alter stream bank vegetation vital to fish spawning habitat and water quality
  • Displace native plant and fish species
  • Degrade water quality, including lowering levels of dissolved oxygen in water that can lead to fish mortality
  • Increase boat repair and maintenance costs, and foul fishing lines and nets
  • Impede recreation opportunities including swimming, diving and fishing
  • Very costly or impossible to control or eradicate

You can make a difference!!!

  • Learn to recognize and identify invasive species
  • Clean, Drain, Dry all equipment, boats, motor, trailer, bait buckets and pets of aquatic debris before leaving. Never transport plants, sediment or live bait among bodies of water.
  • Do not share or purchase species that are invasive.
  • Properly dispose of aquatic invasive plants (dry out, bag and landfill or incinerate).
  • Learn to identify aquatic invasive species.

Invasive Species Profiles – Aquatic

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