What has the OPA done to help prevent the spread of invasive species?
Education: The OPA has been educating the public about the threat of Eurasian watermilfoil, zebra mussels, silver carp and other invasive species since the 1990s to prevent their spread. Because fishing tournaments and sailboat races often bring boats from other lakes with known or potential invasive species infestations, the OPA targets these audiences for education through the media.
Legislation The OPA encouraged the passage of legislation making the transport of aquatic invasive species illegal and punishable by fine. Prior to this, law enforcement officials did not have any authority to remove invasive species if discovered on a boat trailer or prop or to fine the carrier.
Electric Fish Barrier and Silver Carp: The OPA championed fundraising efforts for the electric fish barrier at the Lower Gar Outlet of the Iowa Great Lakes by raising $700,000 for the project.
Boat ramp inspection and education: Since 2010 the OPA has cost shared extra Iowa Department of Natural Resources staff to monitor 12 boat ramps in the Iowa Great Lakes.
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