The Invasive Species Watercraft Inspection Program is a plan to prevent introduction of non-native species to BC. Recently when heading off for some spring lake fishing we were stopped at a checkpoint on #1 highway for a mandatory invasive species inspection of our boat. The conservation officer explained that there is a current concern for two species in particular they were checking for : the Zebra mussels and Quagga mussels to prevent them spreading from the Great Lakes to British Columbia. Here's what you can do to help prevent the spread of these invasive species.
and fisheries in our lakes and rivers”
Zebra & Quagga Mussels & What is the problem
- very difficult to eradicate
- costly to remove
- threaten native species and fisheries ...”
The mussels attach themselves to the bottom of boats and other watercraft and easily transfer to other lakes and spread across the country. The larvae float in water, pumps and bilges under boats and are not detectable.
What We Can Do
This prevention program will stop the spread of these mussels to British Columbia. It's a simple procedure when you are out fishing before returning home to protect and preserve our native species and environment.
Other invasive species and links
- The Asian Clam: This invasive species has been in the USA since the 1930s and has caused widespread damage throughout the USA in waterways and pipes.
- Eurasian Water milfoil is a water plant from Europe, Africa & Asian and has been in Canada since 1900's. It was observed in Okanagan Lake in the 1970's and
- The Great Northern Pike which is considered a game fish. "However, in some areas it is considered to be a nuisance because it devours other game fish such as trout, bass and perch"
"Ecological and economic impacts (of)
Eurasian Water Milfoil grows and spreads rapidly while invading replacing native plants. It negatively impacts fish and wildlife populations as well as human activities ... This plant also has been known to impede flood control, water conservation and drainage and irrigation works."
We have an incredibly beautiful province ... it helps to be aware so that we may conserve our ecosystems for wildlife and future generations.