CHEYENNE - Wyoming aquatic invasive species (AIS) inspection stations will be open April 26 through Sept. 15 at ports of entry, border locations and boat ramps.
Since 2010, state and private inspectors have performed more than 163,000 boat inspections at Wyoming waters, retail shops, ports of entry and borders. Boater cooperation continues to be critical to stopping aquatic invasive species.
All watercraft on Wyoming waters must display an AIS decal, and inspections will go faster for boaters who buy an AIS decal before boating in Wyoming. Buy decals at the Wyoming Game and Fish Department (WGFD) website (wgfd.wyo.gov) or at license-selling agents statewide.
Boaters will receive AIS decals by mail within 15 days. If they boat in Wyoming before they receive their decal, they must be prepared to present their paper or digital receipt (valid for 15 days from purchase date) as proof of purchase.
Motorized watercraft decals are $10 (in-state) and $30 (out-of-state). Non-motorized watercraft decals are $5 (in-state) and $15 (out-of-state). Non-motorized inflatable watercraft 10 feet or shorter are exempt. Decals are valid for the calendar year.
Inspectors check for AIS decals; look for mussels and other invasive species; check for mud, aquatic plants or other debris (which can harbor invasive species); and verify that water has been drained from the boat. The Game and Fish emphasizes it is important that boats are dried after each use. Recommended drying times for boats only using Wyoming waters are at least five days in the summer, 18 days in the spring or fall, and three days in the winter when temperatures are freezing.
Between March 1 and Nov. 30, watercraft transported into the state must be inspected before launching in any Wyoming water. Year-round, watercraft that has been in a water infested with zebra or quagga mussels within the previous 30 days must be inspected prior to launching All WGFD regional offices and a number of other locations offer year-round inspections.
Beth Bear, WGFD AIS coordinator, said inspections are especially important for boats coming into Wyoming because AIS have been found in neighboring states’ waters. Lake Powell on the Utah/Arizona border and Lake Mead in Nevada are of particular concern.
“Many boaters in Wyoming, both residents and nonresidents, also boat in Lake Powell,” Bear said. “When boaters leave Lake Powell to come to Wyoming, they need to call the Game and Fish to schedule an inspection before launching in Wyoming waters. If an inspection station is not open at ports of entry or border locations, boaters still need to have their boat inspected before launching.”
Mussels are most commonly introduced in clean waters by launching boats that have been used in infested waters. Juvenile and adult mussels can attach to boats and larvae can be transported in water in the bilge, live well or motor
If you plan to boat in Wyoming:
• You must get your watercraft inspected each time you enter Wyoming. Inspections are not valid for entire seasons or trips. If your boat leaves the state, it must be reinspected before you launch. To prevent the need for reinspections, consider storing your watercraft in-state.
• Once your boat is inspected, a wire seal will be placed on your boat to connect it to the trailer. You will receive a paper receipt to document your inspection. After your inspection, you may then launch on any Wyoming water at any time; just remember to remove the seal immediately before you launch. Keep the broken seal and receipt in your possession while on the water.
• Plan ahead. Because inspection locations at borders are not open 24 hours, you may need to go to an alternative location for an inspection. Find certified inspection locations.
• If you are transporting any watercraft (motor boats, rafts, drift boats, kayaks, etc.) past any open AIS inspection station, you must stop. When inspection stations are open, signs will direct vehicles transporting watercraft to the location. Even if you have a seal on your boat, you must stop in at the check station so the inspector can verify that the seal and your receipt match.
• Private certified inspectors may conduct watercraft inspections on their own watercraft and provide inspection services to others. Private inspectors, at their discretion, may charge a fee. See our website for hours of operation, addresses, and contact information for certified inspectors
Visit wgfd.wyo.gov or call 1-877-WGFD-AIS for a list of inspection stations, including location and dates and hours of operation. Call 307-777-4600 for information about inspections at WGFD regional offices. Most AIS inspection stations will be staffed seven-days-a-week during the majority of daylight hours.
(Contact: Beth Bear (307) 745-4046)