watercraft inspections

Watercraft Inspection Stations are Idaho’s first-line of defense against the introduction and spread of aquatic invasive species (AIS). Overland travel of contaminated watercraft and equipment is believed to be the single largest vector for AIS movement from one water system to the next. 

Inspection Stations

Idaho’s inspection stations are placed on major highways at or near the Idaho state line. This strategy is taken to maximize contact with boats that are traveling into the state from other impacted states.

High-Risk Watercraft Inspections

High-risk inspections are intense and include a thorough inspection of the exterior and interior parts of the boat. The inspection includes a thorough and complete visual and tactile inspection of all portions of the boat, including compartments, bilge, trailer and any equipment, gear, ropes or anchors.

If any biological material is found on the boat or equipment, the inspectors conduct a roadside “hotwash” of the watercraft. This is done to prevent the spread of other invasive species such as New Zealand mudsnail, Eurasian watermilfoil, and hydrilla.

More than 400,000 inspections have been conducted in Idaho under this program since 2009. Through these inspections, 165 mussel-fouled boats have been intercepted in Idaho since July of 2009.

Boats Considered “High-risk” to the state of Idaho

  • Boats that have been in mussel-infested states recently (within the last 30 days).
  • Watercraft coming from another state (especially commercially hauled boats).
  • Boats that show a lot of dirt, grime, or slime below the waterline.
  • Boats that have standing water on board.
Removed on April 25th, 2016.  Mussels where attached to a used, recently-purchased vessel which was sold at auction in Las Vegas. 

Removed on April 25th, 2016.  Mussels where attached to a used, recently-purchased vessel which was sold at auction in Las Vegas. 

2017 Inspection Station Information

The 2017 boating season has started, and inspection stations are now opening throughout the state. Below is a list of the stations for 2017 with some basic information that will be collected during the season.

In addition to the listed inspection station locations, watercraft are inspected during the boating season at roving roadside inspection stations spread throughout the state. These additional inspections help ISDA better understand the boating public, and potential vectors of introduction into Idaho. Click on the tab below to view additional information collected at the inspection stations, and other projects by ISDA.

Inspection Station # Inspections Fouled Boats Opening Date
Albeni Falls 0 0 5/19/2017
Bear Lake 0 0 Closed
Bruneau 0 0 3/24/2017
Cedars 92 0 3/10/2017
Clark Fork 0 0 5/19/2017
Cotterell 63 0 3/10/2017
Dubois 0 0 Closed
Franklin 0 0 Closed
Huetter 0 0 Closed
Hwy 20 0 0 Closed
Hwy 53 0 0 Closed
Hwy 87 0 0 Closed
Hwy 93 55 1 3/10/2017
Lolo Pass 0 0 Closed
Malad 29 0 3/17/2017
Marsing 0 0 3/24/2017
Redfish Lake 0 0 Closed
Rose Lake 17 0 3/15/2017
Samuels 0 0 5/19/2017
Season Totals 256 3*

*Additional fouled boats found by ISDA field staff


Banner and Photos: Idaho State Department of Agriculture.