Several agencies have cooperated to produce two public service announcements aimed at preventing the spread of aquatic invasive plant and animal species.
In 2011, 18 lakes in Minnesota were added to the Minnesota DNR Infested Waters list. Crow Wing County now hosts 31 infested water bodies, according to the Infested Waters list. Crow Wing Soil and Water Conservation District, University of Minnesota Extension, the DNR, Thirty Lakes Watershed, and Central Lakes College partnered to produce two public service announcements about how to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive plant and animal species before leaving the water access. The videos target Eurasian watermilfoil, Curly leaf pondweed, Spiny water flea, and Zebra mussels. The PSAs feature Serpent Lake and North Long Lake, which are infested with Curly leaf pond weed.
The PSAs feature the clean and drain steps needed to remove aquatic invasive species. Local residents worked with the SWCD to write and record each short PSA. The videos are posted on Youtube and hard copies are available for media outlets upon request.
“We hope to reach a unique audience with these videos by showing young people and families involved in this issue,” Melissa Barrick, district manager, said. “We hope to target a younger active outdoors audience with the video focused on aquatic invasive plants. That video features CLC Natural Resources Student Jody DuBay and Natural Resources instructor Kent Montgomery. The video focused on zebra mussels features a Brainerd Lakes family on a fishing trip.”
“The videos present the information in the form of stories, which we hope will connect with our intended audience,” Robert Bauer, apprentice with the Conservation Corps of Minnesota and Iowa, said. “We are also distributing the videos through channels that younger audiences like to use, like Youtube and Facebook.”
Lake-goers should also take the clean and drain steps to avoid violating the law. As of July 1, 2010, Minnesota Statute 84D.10, Subdivision 4 requires boaters to remove boat drain plugs and leave them out while transporting watercraft. You can read more about these laws at http://www.dnr.state.mn. us/invasives/index_aquatic.html.