Aquatic Invasive Species Update 
Washington & Waukesha Counties
January 2018

Waukesha County AIS Strategic Plan
We started off the new year by completing our brand new Waukesha County Aquatic invasive Species Strategic Plan. Click the link to check it out.
 
We want to hear from you! A Public Forum is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 27th, 2018 at the Delafield Brewhaus ( 3832 Hillside Dr, Delafield, WI 53018).
 
Delafield Brewhaus is located at 3832 Hillside Dr, Delafield, WI 53018.
 
Agenda Items include:
  • Call to meeting to order (7:00pm)
  • Presentation of Waukesha County AIS Strategic Plan (7:10-7:40pm)
  • Walk through of AIS Mapping Application (7:40-8:00pm)
  • Questions and Discussion (8:00-8:30pm)
  • Final Comments and Adjourn (8:35pm)
Come and learn about planned AIS activities, and share your ideas! You can access the AIS Strategic Plan by clicking the picture or the blue URL below. At the webpage you can view the draft plan as well as the AIS Mapping Application. Below the link, you will find a short summary of the Waukesha AIS Strategic Plan.

       The Cover of the Waukesha County AIS Strategic Plan.
 
Waukesha County's aquatic ecosystems are experiencing negative impacts from existing aquatic invasive species (AIS) and continued to be threatened by new invasions. AIS have significant economic impacts on utilities, tourism, and property values. They enter and are distributed by human-assisted vectors including recreational boating, hunting, fishing, tourism, development, and the trade of live organisms. In Waukesha County, an AIS Strategic Plan was developed to direct staff and volunteers that dedicate thousands of hours each year to prevent the spread of AIS. The plan lists priorities and action items to guide the implementation of the AIS program through 2023. To be effective, the goals listed below require a coordinated effort around the county and the continuation of the AIS program, either through grants or other funding sources.
 
AIS Program Goals:
  • Goal 1: Educate water users, both residents and visitors, and the general public about the existence of AIS
  • Goal 2: Prevent the spread of AIS to and from local waters
  • Goal 3: Collect, map, analyze, and periodically update AIS population, distribution, and density data within Waukesha County to monitor program effectiveness and identify new AIS threats
  • Goal 4: Reduce, Manage, and Control new and existing AIS populations within Waukesha County
  • Goal 5: Network and Collaborate with other entities on AIS efforts
  • Goal 6: Sustain the implementation of the AIS Strategic Plan and utilize it as a living document.
Once again, we just want to give a  HUGE thank you to all of the volunteers, staff, lake district and association members, and boaters for getting out and having these important discussions.
Outdoor Wisconsin
Last October, the Washington and Waukesha AIS Team had an amazing opportunity to meet with producers of PBS's  Outdoor Wisconsin and film for a day. We were able to talk to the film crew about what makes a species invasive, and how to watch for and identify AIS in our waters. The film crew brought underwater cameras and a drone, so we were able to capture a day on the water from every possible angle.

Washington and Waukesha AIS Coordinator Brad Steckart explains invasive species on Outdoor Wiscsonsin.

The segment aired on the season premier of Outdoor Wisconsin in early January. We are pleased with how it turned out and want to thank the PBS Film crew, as well as Jeff Kelm and the show's producers for coming out to find out more about aquatic invasive species. Click the picture above to watch the AIS Segment of Outdoor Wisconsin.

The AIS positions in Washington and Waukesha Counties are grant funded and based on conveying the message of AIS prevention to the public. We are so thankful when opportunities like these arise, and are really happy to contribute our part by spreading the message to Clean, Drain, Dry boats and equipment! We really enjoy spreading this message with as much passion and enthusiasm as we can muster. 

If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a "BOATBUSTER" aka AIS intern, keep an eye on the Washington County Job Page for a posting coming in early to mid February. On top of educating boaters and anglers directly at boat launches, the AIS Interns gain skills in surveying, species identification, scientific methods, policy, and even video-editing and photography! It is a great opportunity for a well rounded internship in conservation biology and outreach.   
The Year 2017 in Review
Lake Associations, Lake Districts, and fellow conservationists have played a big role in the success of the AIS program in Washington and Waukesha Counties in the past year. Because of your support and effort, we were able to go above and beyond our goals laid out in our DNR AIS Education, Prevention, and Planning grants. Below are some highlights.
  • Conducted 2,261 hours of Clean Boats, Clean Waters talking to 5,963 boats and 12,216 people
  • Spoke at 63 events including Lake Association/District Annual Meetings, Classrooms, Fishing Clubs, and Conferences
  • Working with Washington County 4H, Carroll College's Prairie Springs Environmental Center, the Ozaukee Washington Land Trust, and individual volunteers, we released almost 1,000,000 purple loosestrife beetles
  • Completed AIS Surveys on 12 Lakes using DNR point-intercept or meander survey methods
  • Verified 11 new aquatic invasive species
  • Visited 20 Pet stores/nurseries to discuss the sale of AIS and provide with AIS outreach materials
  • Sent out 17 AIS E Newsletters and grew recipient base to 400 people
  • Developed 1 AIS Strategic Plan for Waukesha County
  • Submitted over 150 pressed plant voucher specimens to the UWSP Freckmann Herbarium
  • Collaborated with over 40 individual partners to do great work as stewards of our land and water
Carroll University's Dr. Todd Levine displays a survey rake with plants on it.

Lake of the Month - Wallace Lake
January's lake of the month is Wallace lake in the town of Trenton, just north of West Bend (see map). Wallace Lake is a 54 acre lake located in Washington County. It has a maximum depth of 35 feet. Visitors have access to the lake from a public boat landing. Fish include pan fish, Largemouth Bass, Northern Pike, Walleye and Catfish. The lake's water clarity is low.

Wallace Lake Aerial Photo courtesy WDNR.

This fall, the Wallace Lake Sanitary District approved the installation of a Aquatic Invasive Species Removal Station at the launch.  It is a very exciting opportunity for the District to grow as lake stewards and take care of their water. The tools that will be installed in spring include an industrial grabber, a broom, and a brush (not pictured).

AIS Cleaning Station at Wallace Lake.

Wallace Lake has seen the detrimental effects of zebra mussels and Eurasian water milfoil and wants to protect their lake against threats of other AIS, like starry stonewort, from neighboring lakes.
The AIS Cleaning Stations will help  Clean Boats, Clean Waters watercraft inspectors remove plants and animals from watercraft and trailers before and after entering the lake. 

If you are looking to participate in AIS activities on your lake, feel free to contact the AIS team about getting involved.  

To subscribe to this Waukesha County Aquatic Invasive Species Update Newsletter by clicking the image below or here!

For more information:


Washington County
262-335-4800
Waukesha County
262-896-8300