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Tips for Waterfowl Hunters

Overview

Waterfowl hunting is a popular pastime for many Pennsylvanians, and hunting activities contribute significantly to the recreational economy. However, aquatic invasive species (AIS) like Eurasian watermilfoil and zebra mussels can threaten habitat for waterfowl and other wildlife. Hunters should take precautions to ensure they don't spread plants and animals that can be accidentally transported on duck boats, blind material, and hunting gear.

Clean

Inspect and clean off visible plants, animals and mud from waders, hip boots, watercraft, motor, trailer, ATVs, push poles, decoys, decoy lines and anchors before leaving area. Brush hunting dogs and rinse kennels with tap water.

Drain

Drain water from watercraft, motor, bilge, and other water-containing devices before leaving water access.

Dry

Dry everything five days or more, unless otherwise required by local or state laws, or wipe with a towel before reuse.

In Addition...

In addition to the steps above, hunters should:

  • Use non-felt soled boots to further reduce the risk of spreading aquatic invasive species.

  • Cut emergent vegetation above waterline for blinds or camouflage in accordance with regulations.

  • Use elliptical and bulb-shaped anchors to help avoid snagging aquatic plants.

  • Pick up shotgun hulls after shooting and dispose of them properly. Spent hulls can transport aquatic invasive species if left to float around aquatic ecosystems.

Information on this page is provided by Pennsylvania Sea Grant

Download the entire "Tips for Waterfowl Hunters" handout here.

The Pennsylvania iMapInvasives Program is a partnership of the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy, the Pennsylvania Natural Heritage Program, and NatureServe.

Funding for Pennsylvania iMapInvasives is provided by the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.

NatureServe logo, iMapInvasives partner
Pennsylvania Natural Heritage Program, iMapInvasives partner
Great Lakes Restoration Initiative logo, iMapInvasives funding source