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AIS Current Activities

September 2014

All of Montana FWP's watercraft inspection stations are now closed for the season except for one roving crew at Fort Peck, who will work until the end of September. Now that nearly all of the stations have closed. AIS Program Staff can now focus on getting the last of the data entered and start preparing the annual report. The table below is NOT FINALIZED since many of the stations' data is not completely entered but It gives a good idea of overall numbers and the most common types of violations the crews encountered this field season. In addition please reference the summary of illegally transported live fish that were found over the course of the summer.

The AIS Program Staff would like to offer huge thanks to all who helped make this season a safe and successful one, especially our tireless game wardens. THANK YOU!

The inspection station and monitoring reports will be distributed as soon as they are completed. Contact Stacy Schmidt, Craig McLane or Linnaea Schroeer with any questions in the meantime.

See the AIS Inspections table (PDF icon and link 46 KB) for a partial summary of the number of inspections done at our seasonally permanent and roving watercraft inspection stations from the beginning of the season (May 22) through September 12, 2014.

Photo of AIS Coram Inspection Station - Confiscation of yellow perchAIS Coram Inspection Station - Confiscation of yellow perch

Photo of Thompson Falls AIS Inspection StationThompson Falls AIS Inspection Station

Photo of FWP wardens at AIS Inspection StationFWP wardens at AIS Inspection Station

Photo of Dena Mora AIS Inspection StationDena Mora AIS Inspection Station

Photo of Zebra mussels found on watercraft at Dillon AIS Inspection StationZebra mussels found on watercraft at Dillon
AIS Inspection Station

July 2014

FWP AIS Staff state that it's hard to believe that the summer is already winding down, as always the beautiful Montana summer passes all too swiftly. While most of our stations will operate until Labor Day, some of our stations will be closing early or going to reduced hours to accommodate those workers who are returning to school. The Hardin station moved from 7 days a week to 4 days a week (Thursday-Sun) starting August 12, Billings Roving will be ending on August 17, and Dillon will be going to 4 days a week starting August 18th. AIS Program Staff would prefer to keep these stations open seven days a week all season, but as many of our station employees are students, this is an unavoidable situation they run into every summer. They continue to work to find solutions to this problem.

Since the last update there have been no new findings of zebra/quagga mussels or illegally transported live fish, but inspectors have continued to find many occurrences of vegetation, standing water, and just plain dirty boats. So far inspectors have checked a total of 22,576 boats this season, with 264 failing inspection.

See the AIS Inspections table (PDF icon and link87 KB) for a summary of the number of inspections done at our seasonally permanent and roving watercraft inspection stations from the beginning of the season (May 22) through August 8, 2014.

The AIS Staff thank everyone for their continued interest and support.

Monitoring Activity as of August 8, 2014

  • Abbot Lake
  • Bean Lake
  • Beaverhead River
  • Big Hole River
  • Bighorn River
  • Clark Canyon Reservoir
  • Cliff Lake
  • Darlington Ditch
  • Dearborn River
  • Echo Lake
  • Ennis River
  • Harrison Lake
  • Hauser Lake
  • Helena Regulating Reservior
  • Holter Lake
  • Flathead Lake
  • Flathead River
  • Fort Peck Reservior
  • Fresno Reservior
  • Lake 5
  • Lake Helena
  • Lake Mary Ronan
  • Little Mcgregor Lake
  • Little Prickly Pear Creek
  • Lower Stillwater Lake
  • Madison River
  • Marias River
  • Mcgregor Lake
  • Milk River
  • Missouri River
  • Nelson Reservoir
  • Peterson Lake
  • Stillwater River
  • Tiber Reservoir
  • Upper Stillwater Lake
  • Wade Lake
  • Yellowstone River

Photo of AIS Monitoring _Craig McLane_Program StaffAIS Monitoring - Craig McLane, Program Staff

Photo of Fort Peck AIS Inspection Station_Program Staff_Stacy SchmidtFort Peck AIS Inspection Station
Stacy Schmidt, Program Staff

Photo of New Zealand mudsnails found on trash in Bluewater CreekNew Zealand mudsnails found on trash in
Bluewater Creek

June 2014

FWP Watercraft Inspection Stations

FWP AIS Program staff are finally catching our collective breaths as the 2014 Field season gets underway. Following a three-day training May 19-21 here in Helena, stations began opening up starting May 22 on a staggered basis. As of June 12, all of the stations are operating with the exception of Culbertson, Glasgow Roving, and Swan Roving. AIS staff plan on starting the Swan and Culbertson stations in the next two weeks, and hopefully Glasgow roving as well. Some of the newly opened stations like Fort Peck have not submitted data yet, but totals will be included in the next update.

A big thanks to all our partners and co-workers who have helped get these stations up and running, especially Montana Department of Transportation (MDT), our Enforcement personnel, and Regional Supervisors and Fish Managers.

AIS Program Staff do still struggle with drive-bys, particularly of vehicles carrying or pulling non-motorized watercraft. AIS staff ask those of you on this list who communicate with a user group to please reiterate the fact that everyone needs to stop, every time, regardless of the type of watercraft. If users are going back and forth to the same water body on a regular basis they can request a sticker from that station and won't have to go through the whole survey each time, but they still need to pull in and get inspected.

See the AIS Inspections table (PDF icon and link68 KB) for a summary of the number of inspections done at our seasonally permanent and roving watercraft inspection stations from the beginning of the season (May 22) through June 16, 2014.

Photo of AIS inspectionPhoto of AIS inspection2014 AIS Inspection Station - Helena Roving Crew -Canyon Ferry Reservoir

Photo of AIS inspection
2014 AIS Inspection Station- Helena Roving Crew- Missouri River

May 2014

FWP Watercraft Inspection Stations

The Montana AIS Program is gearing up to open watercraft inspection stations for the 2014 season at the following locations: see map (PDF icon and link 380 KB)

photo of AIS Decontamination Training at Fort Peck Station
AIS Decontamination Training at Fort Peck Inspection Station

Crew training will be May 19-21 in Helena and stations will open on a staggered basis in the following ten days. FWP AIS Program Staff are still looking for crew members for Culbertson, Fort Peck, Glasgow/Malta Roving, and Shelby. If you know of anyone interested in working for us this summer please direct them to FWP jobs

The watercraft inspection station at Coram, previously a voluntary station operated by the Flathead Basin Commission, opened on May 1st. This station will operate through the weekends until Memorial Day weekend, and then will jump to 7 days a week. Flathead Basin Commission is providing the funding so that this station can operate mandatorily under FWP authority. The first weekend of traffic was slow, but we anticipate that will pick up as the boating season gets going.

Once all the stations are up and running FWP AIS staff, LInnaea Schroeer will be sending out biweekly updates of watercraft inspection station and monitoring activity.