This article was featured in the 2022 summer newsletter by Rob Williams-SLELO PRISM.
As our first line of defense against the spread of aquatic invasive species, our stewards have made a commitment to inspect thousands of watercraft and educate thousands of boaters about the importance of cleaning, draining, and drying their watercraft. Like the postal workers’ motto, through rain, sleet, ice or snow….ok leave out the ice and snow— add wind and mosquitos, our stewards are on the front lines. And let us not forget that our Boat Launch Stewards have committed all of their summer weekends to help protect our freshwater resources.
Sponsored by the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation Invasive Species Coordination Section, and co-administered by SLELO PRISM, TNC, and the Thousand Islands Land Trust, our Watercraft Inspection Steward Program (WISP), combined with all programs across the state, represents a significant effort to prevent the spread and introduction of new aquatic invasive species. Watercraft users travel from across North America vacationing, recreating, and angling. These travels pose a rather significant liability to our freshwaters. Our stewards interact with folks from all over and provide aquatic invasive species information to all those encountered. And with all of this comes a notable 96% Clean, Drain, Dry compliance rate.
So ‘hats-off’ to our stewards for your continued commitment and hard work to protect our freshwaters from the impacts of aquatic invasive species. Your efforts are acknowledged and appreciated.