This is Passport to Texas
By now you’re aware of the zebra mussel; it’s an invasive freshwater species first detected in North America more than 25 years ago in the Great Lakes. By 2009 the species made its way to Texas Lakes.
08—Texoma was first, and now we’ve got them in five other reservoirs around the state. And now we’re trying to slow or prevent the zebra mussels from getting into the other public water bodies.
Ken Kurzawski oversees regulations for inland fisheries. Zebra mussels reproduce quickly and outcompete native freshwater species – like sport fish – for food.
12— And on top of that, they have a way to attach to structures—boats and things—that cause billions of dollars of damage in other parts of the country where they get into [municipal] water pipes and on structures where they have to be cleaned off.
Those are the kinds of outcomes Texas Parks and Wildlife and its partners want to avoid in Texas. On July 1 (2014) a new regulation went into effect mandating all boaters drain their boats before leaving public waters.
10—Any water that you uptake in your bilges, live wells, has to be drained from your vessel when you’re leaving those waters, or approaching another public water. And that’s statewide in all fresh waters.
Find additional information about this regulation, including how it pertains to transporting live fish while angling, and how to correctly clean, drain and dry your boat at texasinvasives.org.
The Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program supports our series… and receives funds from your purchase of fishing and hunting equipment and motor boat fuel.
For Texas Parks and Wildlife, I’m Cecilia Nasti.