Saturday, May 28, 2011

It is time to go fishing.

When I am not fishing , hunting, going to sport shows or scouting out a new area or lake, I like to review websites posted by the various states. My three favorites are Iowa, as I am a native and fish and hunt along the Missouri River bottoms. I review South Dakota because I fish the glacial lakes. Nebraska is referenced a lot as I hunt waterfowl, upland game, and deer in the state. Living in southwest Iowa along the Missouri River provides me with ample areas to hunt and fish. I should also add, I have no favorite as the sites are all outstanding. It just depends on where I go and spend my time.

Iowa has an excellent article about aquatic hitchhikers.  I always follow their suggestion in keeping my boat and livewells clean. The article below is reprinted from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources Website.

Zebra mussels and Eurasian watermilfoil are two aquatic invasive species that have spread across Iowa by hitchhiking on boats, in bait buckets, and on other equipment used in the water. Bighead and silver carp are two other aquatic invasive species that have been spreading on their own throughout Iowa rivers. With recent flooding, these nuisance species have been able to swim around dams that otherwise blocked their movement.

"Public action is the key to preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species," said Kim Bogenschutz, DNR aquatic invasive species program coordinator. "Boaters and anglers can unintentionally transport aquatic hitchhikers if they do not take the proper precautions to prevent their spread - inspect, clean, drain."

• Inspect your boat, trailer, and equipment and clean them of any visible plants, animals or mud before leaving a water body.

• Drain water from the live well, bilge, transom, motor and bait buckets before leaving a water body.

• Clean and dry boats, trailers and equipment. Before transporting to another water body.

• Spray/wash your boat, trailer and equipment with high-pressure and/or hot water; or dry your boat and equipment for at least 5 days.

• Dispose of unwanted bait in the trash. Never release plants, fish, or animals into a water body unless they came out of that water body.

It is illegal to possess or transport prohibited aquatic invasive species in Iowa. The fine for violating the law is $500. Signs are posted at public accesses to remind boaters to stop aquatic hitchhikers and to identify infested waters. More information about aquatic invasive species and a list of infested waters can be found in the 2010 Iowa Fishing Regulations booklet.

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Good fishing, good hunting and good luck. Hank

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