AIS Management & Prevention
Preventing aquatic invasive species from reaching Connecticut lakes and ponds is the preferred method of control. People can move invasive species from one body of water to another on boats and trailers. Connecticut legislation (Connecticut Public Act No. 03-136) imposes fines on individuals found transporting invasive non-native plants in this way. Posting signs at boat launch ramps detailing what invasive species look like and the importance of checking and cleaning boats and trailers can be helpful. Plants liberated from aquariums or water gardens are another way non-native aquatic plants are introduced into freshwater ecosystems. Properly disposing of aquarium plants and isolating water gardens will help reduce these risks. Public Act No. 04-203 restricts the sale of most invasive aquatic plants in Connecticut.
Unfortunately, the spread of invasive non-native aquatic plants in Connecticut is likely to continue because large numbers of lakes and ponds already contain the plants and natural movement by flowing water and aquatic wildlife is largely uncontrollable. Eradication of new infestations is more likely to be successful than elimination of large areas of established plants. Volunteer monitoring programs can be initiated to routinely check water bodies for new plants. The Invasive Aquatic Plant Program (CAES IAPP) can offer assistance to volunteers on how to survey and identify aquatic vegetation through their invasive aquatic plant workshops.