department events

Aquatic Invasive Spieces


 “Protect the Lakes – Decontaminate!”
Kandiyohi County has a watercraft decontamination unit available free of charge.

Call 320-214-6730 for hours and locations of decontamination units.
How Can I help - Copy
For more important information, please visit the following website:

Russ Hilbert
Aquatic Invasive Species Coordinator

Kandiyohi County
320.231.6200 ext 5251


Aquatic Invasive Spieces

NEWS Briefs


Erika Gilsdorf
Leighton Broadcasting

June 20, 2018

Announcing 6 new PSA’s on Aquatic Invasive Species

A creative series of six, 30-second public service announcements and accompanying social media posts have been professionally produced to gain attention on aquatic invasive species while sharing actions people can take to stop the spread. The videos and social media posts are available for download to be used and shared across Minnesota and the Midwest.

This video series is available as a free resource thanks to funding from the Minnesota counties of Douglas, Pope, Otter Tail, Cass, Becker, and Aitkin along with the Crow Wing County Lakes and Rivers Alliance and the Pelican Lakes Association in Crow Wing county.

Remove Weeds

Drain All Water

Clean Off Anchor

Dry 21 Days

Decon Station

Drain Livewell

The impacts from aquatic invaders like Eurasian watermilfoil, starry stonewort, zebra mussels,and spiny waterflea are hitting home in Minnesota. The quality of Minnesota lakes and rivers is threatened by these invasive species that hurt enjoyment of our lakes, property values, tourism, fish populations, cause algae blooms, fouled beaches, and wreak economic havoc by clogging boat motors and water supply and drainage systems.

It is vital to our current and future local, state and regional economy to greatly increase our education efforts to inform the public about aquatic invasive species and steps to prevent their spread. To receive files to download and share or learn more, please contact Erika Gilsdorf at the contact information above.

“As a former AIS inspector, it was my goal with this project to provide a fresh and creative ‘hook’ around aquatic invasive species messaging and the actions people can take to stop the spread. The response with this series has already been phenomenal. We’re excited to be part of a multi-county project that can offer these videos and social media posts at no charge to lake associations, organizations, businesses, government agencies, and individuals to share.”

Erika Gilsdorf, producer

The videos were produced in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota by LB Video Productions, a division of Leighton Broadcasting.

News Release - For Immediate Release

September 23, 2015

Margaret Johnson, Administrator
Middle Fork Crow River Watershed District
189 County Road 8 NE
PO Box 8
Spicer, MN 56288

Fall Prevention of the Spread of Aquatic Invasive Species

Green and Calhoun Lakes in Kandiyohi County are now designated by the Minnesota DNR as infested with zebra mussels, an aquatic invasive species (AIS). This year, a decontamination unit for watercraft and water-related equipment was available from May through September at the County Park 4 (Saulsbury) public water access, and staff members provided decontamination services free-of-charge. The decontamination unit has now been winterized and placed in storage until next spring, although there’s still a significant risk of spreading AIS during the fall and winter months. As water equipment (e.g. docks, rafts, lifts) are removed for the season, inspect and remove any attached invasive species. It may be necessary to run your hand over smooth surfaces to detect juvenile mussels which may feel like gritty sandpaper under your fingertips. It is illegal to transport AIS, dead or alive, and may result in a fine. If you find invasive species on your equipment, you have two options. You may download a transport permit from the MN DNR, which allows you to move the equipment to a single location where it can be decontaminated and must be completed, signed, and kept in possession during travel to avoid a citation. Or, allow equipment to dry for 21 days and decontaminate before leaving the property. 

Fall hunting activities may also pose a risk of spreading AIS. Although natural resource professionals do not view the smooth exterior of decoys as a significant risk, damaged decoys that leak should be drained completely. Zebra mussel larvae (veligers) and adults can survive in these wet and humid environments for up to 27 days. Lowering your boat’s motor to drain water helps, but the only way to flush remaining water is with a decontamination unit. Ensuring waders, anchors, boat trailers, and all water-related equipment is drained and free of mud, plants, and water will help prevent your favorite hunting grounds from becoming infested with AIS. Be safe, responsible, and enjoy the season!


Credit: Crow River Organization of Water.



Resources for Community Members

Resources for Community Members


One of the largest responsibilities is managing the watercraft inspectors and decontamination specialists that work on access sites throughout the county. Throughout the months of May-September, my time will be primarily working with these employees to ensure a successful program. I will not be available to present at summer lake or community association meetings as a result during this time; however, the AIS program has several resources for groups. I will be available in the spring and winters to assist with speaking requests. There may also be space to work with Kandiyohi AIS Task Force members to help communicate about the county’s action steps and programs.
AIS 1  AIS 2
We have invasive species samples that can be borrowed, giveaw
ays such as sunglasses and sponges, educational materials, such as brochures and booklets, and an interactive educational display that can be borrowed. Feel free to reach out using the contact information below for more information or to set up pick up times.


  AIS 3


Education and Outreach

Education and Outreach

A large part of AIS programming is continuing to share information and connect people to resources.  Along with brochures specific to the invasive species infestations in Kandiyohi, we are promoting our decontamination units.  Decontamination is offered for free at the Saulsbury Beach Access on Green Lake.  Call 320-214-6730 for hours and information on an additional decontamination unit.

 These details are shared through radio ads, local magazines, gas stations, giveaways, sentry units, and at access sites.

We are also working with an independent educator who is a former teacher to provide an educational program that aligns with State science standards to 7th graders in Willmar and New London Spicer middle schools to engage younger audiences around AIS issues.  In 2019 about 430 students received this program. 

Watercraft Inspection

Watercraft Inspection Program

We unfortunately have eleven lakes in Kandiyohi County with confirmed zebra mussel infestations with a number of the lakes in the county have new or existing Eurasian water milfoil populations. Additionally, the threat of starry stonewort in both Pope and Stearns counties surrounds us. With this in mind, we try to tailor our watercraft and decontamination program to provide the best coverage possible. The scheduling is based on infestations, usage, and feedback from local community groups. With limited resources, we cannot have an employee on every access every day, but we are working to balance all of the needs and lakes. Please be supportive of our watercraft inspectors, especially considering they are more effective educators when the community is rallying around them. These individuals, per our delegation agreement with the MN DNR, are trained in a particular way that we will not deviate from. If you find that there is a policy that you would like to speak further about, please feel free to reach out to me. 



The Kandiyohi County Aquatic Invasive Species task force meets the fourth Wednesday of each month at the Detlef Center, 217 Hillcrest Avenue (near the Green Lake Mall) in Spicer from 6:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Please call Coordinator Russ Hilbert at (320) 231.6229 ext 5251 to confirm dates and times in case of a schedule change.


Russ Hilbert
Aquatic Invasive Species Coordinator

Kandiyohi County
320.231.6200 ext 5251