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Idaho adds inspection stations to target invasive species

A boat in the Snake River Canyon near Murphy. Idaho officials are adding inspection stations in the hopes of intercepting boats that carry harmful mussels and other non-native species. File photo.

Idaho officials have added watercraft inspection stations and extended operating hours at some in anticipation of a busy season.

The Capital Press reports the Idaho stations that intercept invasive species have already found 22 watercrafts with harmful mussels this year. The stations found 31 last year.

The state Department of Agriculture has added three stations in the last two years, bringing the total to 20 in the state. Hours have been extended at three stations and a fourth is open around the clock.

Station crews target invasive species like non-native weeds and zebra mussels that can degrade water quality and fish and wildlife habitat as well as damage water systems.

Officials say the number of inspections is expected to increase this year from the more than 93,000 recorded last year.

 

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