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Memorial Day is First Busy Weekend of the Year for Boaters, AIS Inspectors

05/21/2012

CHEYENNE - The Memorial Day weekend is the first busy boating weekend of the year and Game and Fish Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) inspectors will have inspection crews at Wyoming’s most popular waters.

Game and Fish AIS coordinator Beth Bear said there are a number of things boaters can do to make sure the inspection process goes smoothly to allow boaters to launch with minimal delays. “In addition to making sure your boat is registered, and the AIS decal has been purchased, boaters can speed up the inspection process by performing a self-check on their boat before they get to the lake,” Bear said. “The self-check form on the Game and Fish website guides boaters through many of the same questions inspectors will ask.

The self-check asks if boaters have used their watercraft in any infested waters within the last 30 days, and if so, has the watercraft been decontaminated. If a boat has been in an infested water in the last 30 days, it must be inspected and possibly decontaminated before launching in Wyoming. To schedule an inspection, call 1-877-WGFD-AIS.

The self-check also guides boaters through the Drain, Clean and Dry procedure. “All boaters should Drain Clean and Dry their watercraft and equipment after each use. Drain all water from your gear and equipment. This includes all types of watercraft, waders, boots, clothing, buckets-anything that comes into contact with the water. Leave any wet compartments open to dry. Clean all plants, mud, and debris from gear and equipment. Never move a plant or animal from one location to another. Dry everything thoroughly. In Wyoming, we recommend drying for five days in the summer, 18 days in spring or fall, or three days of freezing” Bear said.

“This is the third year for Wyoming’s AIS inspection program,” Bear said. “Boaters are becoming very familiar with the process and the vast majority of boaters are very supportive of what we are trying to do to keep AIS out of Wyoming.”

AIS decals can be purchased at license agents, online, or at Game and Fish regional offices. When purchased at agents or online, the boater receives a receipt that the decal has been purchased which can then be shown to inspectors and Game and Fish officers until the actual decal is received in the mail. More information on the decal can be found on the Game and Fish website.

In most instances, the launching should go smoothly as the inspection process for the vast majority of boats will only take a few minutes. “The key to a speedy inspection is to do the self-check and make sure registration has been done and appropriate decal has been purchased,” Bear said.
(Contact: Beth Bear (307) 745-4046)

-WGFD-

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