Hundreds of Minnesota waterways are designated as infested with aquatic invasive species (AIS), which include zebra mussels, several types of snails, common carp, non-native waterlilies and other aquatic plants. These species are not native to Minnesota and cause harm to the environment as well as human health.
It is illegal to transport these harmful species, which often hitch a ride on unsuspecting boats and trailers. The Department of Natural Resources enforces the following laws to protect Minnesota’s waters, and will ticket anyone who is found:
- transporting watercraft without the drain plug removed
- arriving at lake access with drain plug in place
- transporting any prohibited species, dead or alive
- launching watercraft with prohibited species attached
- transporting water from Minnesota lakes or rivers
- releasing live bait into the water
Find more information, including a list of prohibited species and what you can do to prevent them from spreading, at mndnr.gov/ais.