CHEYENNE - The upcoming Fourth of July holiday is traditionally one of the busiest periods of the year for boating activities, and with those boats on the water it becomes extra important that boaters perform the self checks on their watercraft before getting to the lake.
Game and Fish Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) Coordinator Beth Bear said the previous July 4 holiday was a very busy time with over 5,000 boats inspected on 23 waters from June 30-July 6.
According to AIS coordinator Beth Bear, boaters are embracing the program as is evidenced by purchase of AIS decals and comments received at inspection stations.
“Most boaters are telling us they don’t mind the brief delay to have their boat inspected before launching,” Bear said. “They are telling us they are glad to do their part to keep AIS out of Wyoming waters. We are trying to do what we can to provide additional inspection crews during busy periods, to keep inspections running smoothly, and keep delays to a minimum for boaters to launch.”
To date, more than 5,000 boats have been checked for AIS since mid-May. Flaming Gorge was busiest over the Memorial Day holiday period with 509 inspections, followed by Jackson Lake with 321 inspections, and Glendo Reservoir with 319 inspections. Other popular waters over Memorial Day included Lake DeSmet with 224 inspections and Buffalo Bill Reservoir where 188 boats were inspected.
The July 4 holiday week typically sees the most activity of any holiday period, making it especially important that boaters follow the Drain, Clean, and Dry procedures to speed up the inspection process and making sure AIS decals are purchased in advance.
AIS decal sales continue to be strong and have generated more than $200,000 in revenue so far in 2012. Decal sales are used to fund the AIS inspection and education program.
Information on AIS including the Drain, Clean, and Dry process, self check form, and AIS decal program can be found on the WGFD website at: wgfd.wyo.gov.
(Contact: Beth Bear (307) 745-4046)