The Michigan Departments of Environmental Quality (MDEQ), Natural Resources (MDNR), and Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) are planning the 4th annual Aquatic Invasive Species Landing Blitz outreach event for July 1 through July 9, 2017, as part of Michigan’s Aquatic Invasive Species Awareness Week and you’re invited to participate!
The Landing Blitz is a collaborative outreach campaign to raise awareness about preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species (AIS) through recreational boating and related activities. Local volunteer partners will deliver consistent messaging about preventing the introduction and spread of AIS from the movement of watercraft and equipment between water bodies at both public and private boating access sites throughout the state. Media involvement (press releases, local news stories, etc.) will also be used to create a larger impact.
More specifically, local partners such as lake associations, conservation districts, Cooperative Invasives Species Management Areas (CISMAs) and others will be empowered to meet with boaters during the event period to deliver messaging that includes:
- “Clean, Drain, Dry” and “Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers!”
- Clean Boats Clean Waters program awareness and principles
- Boat washing & equipment decontamination procedures (with and without a mobile or permanent wash station)
- Reporting protocols for watch list species and others
- Awareness of specific regulations (Part 413 of the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act PA 451 or 1994, Fisheries Order 245 Fish Disease Control, etc.)
- Proper bait disposal
We’re inviting you and/or your organization to partner with us to host a Landing Blitz at a boating access site in your local area on at least one day during the event period (July 1 – July 9). We will provide talking points, information for press releases, and host an informational teleconference call in the weeks prior to the event for all interested participants. Additionally, we will provide a limited quantity of “Clean, Drain, Dry” branded outreach materials (water bottles, microfiber towels, can coozies, key chains, etc.) to the first 50 locations/organizations to sign up for the event (see below). Registration as a location host is open until May 31, 2017.
As a participant, you’ll need to commit to hosting the event at a local boating access site on the date/s and time of your choosing within the event period and provide at least a couple volunteers to interact with boaters and deliver messaging during the event. You can view a brief video recap here from a previous event.
With your help, the AIS Landing Blitz will encourage recreational boaters to take action to prevent AIS and help raise awareness for this important issue in Michigan.
Please contact Kevin Walters of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Water Resources Division to officially sign-up for the event and be kept in the information loop as we move forward. Kevin can be reached at 517.284.5473 or by emailing Waltersk3@michigan.gov