MSU Extension helps to educate on and prevent invasive species
Invasive species of plants and animals have been a problem in Michigan waters for hundreds of years, ever since they were introduced through international trips between America and Europe between the 1800s to 1900s. It wasn’t until the early 1990s that the government decided to do something about it, with ballast water regulations to keep invasive species from hitching a ride on boats.
In 2018, there was an estimated 187 non-native species that were considered established in the Great Lakes system, according to aquatic invasive species educator with MSU Extension Kelsey Bockelman. And because there are water bodies in Michigan without invasive species, there’s always a threat of further invasion, if boaters aren’t careful to inspect their ships for stowaway plants and fish.