New AIS Detectors certified; now it's your turn to get involved with MAISRC!
Everyone at MAISRC is pleased to congratulate this year’s 97 newly certified AIS Detectors! MAISRC now has almost 225 AIS Detectors all around the state, ready to help in the fight against aquatic invasive species in Minnesota. You can read all about the experience of AIS Detectors Steve and Cec in this great article from the Duluth News Tribune! And if you missed your chance on becoming a Detector this year, don't fear: we'll hold another series of workshops next spring.
Whether or not you’re an AIS Detector, MAISRC has plenty of opportunities for you to get hands-on experience and learn more about AIS in Minnesota:
On the water workshops
Join experts from MAISRC and University of Minnesota Extension out on the water this summer to learn about starry stonewort. The workshop will cover the basics of starry stonewort identification, biology, and impacts and then take a deeper dive with local guest speakers. You will also get to enjoy some hands-on learning as we pull live starry stonewort on board along with other aquatic plant life to put your ID skills to the test. No previous experience is required.
We will wrap up with a lunch and learn session on dry land (lunch is provided). The registration fee is $35. Two workshops will be held: Moose Lake in Beltrami County on Friday, July 27 (register here) and Lake Koronis in Stearns County on August 4 (register here).
Field trip: Emerging threats
Join MAISRC Extension Educators on Monday, August 13 for a road trip exploring AIS issues and cutting -edge research. We’ll take a comfortable coach bus to our first stop: Lock & Dam #2 in Hastings. You will receive a behind-the-scenes tour from Army Corps of Engineers staff and learn how locks and dams can be a critical control point for preventing the spread of invasive carp like silver and bighead carp up the Mississippi River. Next we’ll venture down the Mississippi to the United States Geological Survey’s Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center where you will get a chance to see live invasive species such as sea lamprey and hear from USGS scientists about the work they are doing to address AIS threats to the Upper Midwest. More details and registration information is available on our website.
Join MAISRC on Saturday, August 18 for a day searching for one of Minnesota's newest aquatic invasive species, starry stonewort (and other invaders). Registration is now open! Volunteers will get expert training on how to look for and identify starry stonewort and other invasives. Rendezvous sites are located across the state and will be hosted by local agencies and organizations to search nearby locations. Participants will meet at the local rendezvous site in the morning and will be assigned sites to search upon arrival.
This really makes a difference: last year, Starry Trek participants found an early infestation of starry stonewort in Grand Lake, which lead to the lake association and the Minnesota DNR rapidly mobilizing to hand-pull the infestation. Initial results from this early intervention are very promising.
No experience is necessary to participate in Starry Trek, and it’s free and family-friendly! Register today.
Purchase an AIS ID Guide
MAISRC’s state-of-the-art AIS ID Guide is available through the University of Minnesota bookstore. The guide – which is printed on waterproof, durable paper so you can take it out with you on the water – contains photos and tips for identifying aquatic invasive plants, invertebrates, and fish that are considered high-risk to Minnesota waters, as well as their common native lookalike species. Over forty species are included!