Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers!

  • Inspect your boat, trailer, and equipment and remove any visible plants, animals, or mud before leaving a waterbody.
  • Drain water from your boat, motor, live well and bilge before leaving a waterbody.
  • Dispose of unwanted bait in the trash. Never release fish, animals or plants into a waterbody unless they came from that waterbody.
  • Rinse or dry your boat, trailer, and fishing equipment to remove or kill species that were not visible when you left a waterbody. Before transporting to another waterbody, rinse with high pressure and/or hot (104 degrees) water or dry for at least five days.
  • Learn to identify aquatic nuisance species and report any suspected sightings to the nearest DNR fisheries station.

  What the Iowa DNR Aquatic Invasive Species Program does

  • Conduct vegetation surveys to detect new infestations of aquatic invasive plants.
  • Treat new infestations of aquatic invasive plants.
  • Conducts watercraft inspections statewide.
  • Zebra mussel dive surveys on Clear Lake and Lake Rathbun to study population dynamics.
  • Zebra mussel sampling on interior rivers and lakes to detect zebra mussel infestations.
  • Educational outreach with boaters, schools, and user groups.

Aquatic Invasive Species Law

  • It is illegal to possess, introduce, purchase, sell, or transport aquatic invasive species in Iowa.
  • It is illegal to transport aquatic plants attached to or within water-related equipment, including boats, trailers, bait containers, live wells, ballast tanks, and bilge areas.
  • All water must be drained from water-related equipment when leaving a water access (this includes livewells and bait buckets). Drain plugs, bailers and valves must remain removed or open during transport.
  • It is illegal to introduce any live fish, except for hooked bait, into public waters.
  • Frequently Asked Questions about the Aquatic Invasive Species Law

Aquatic Invasive Species
To report a possible aquatic invasive species e-mail: or

Other useful Invasive Species Links