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 600,000 inspections have been conducted in Idaho under this program since 2009. Through these inspections, 245 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.

These mussels were found attached to a used vessel sold at auction in Las Vegas.

These mussels were found attached to a used vessel sold at auction in Las Vegas.

2019 Inspection Station Information

The 2019 watercraft inspection season is upon us with inspection stations opening statewide in the coming weeks. Below is a link to the data being collected at the inspection stations throughout the state.

In addition to the 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.

Regional Inspection Points


Fouled Boat Information for 2019 

Fouled Boat # Location Found Origin Destination State Date Found
1 ISDA Staff Lake Huron, MI Idaho 2/28/2019
2 ISDA Staff Lake Havasu, AZ Idaho 3/7/2019
3 Malad Lake Havasu, AZ Alberta 3/18/2019
4 Cotterel Lake Powell, UT Idaho 3/27/2019
5 Malad Parker, AZ Montana 3/30/2019
6 Malad Lake Pleasant, AZ Washington 4/5/2019
7 Cedars Michigan Washington 4/6/2019
8 ISDA Staff Lake Havasu, CA Idaho 4/22/2019
9 Malad Lake Havasu, AZ Montana 4/25/2019
10 Malad Lake Powell, UT British Columbia 4/27/2019
11 Malad Lake Havasu, AZ Idaho 4/30/2019
12 Cedars Lake Wisconsin, WI British Columbia 5/1/2019
13 Franklin Lake Powell, UT Alaska 5/1/2019
14 Cedars Lake Champlain, VT Washington 5/13/2019
15 Franklin Lake Powell, UT Idaho 5/14/2019
16 ISDA Staff Mississippi, MN Idaho 5/17/2019
17 Malad Lake Pleasant, AZ Montana 5/17/2019
18 Cedars Lake Walloon, MI Idaho 5/19/2019
19 Cedars Lake Michigan, MI Washington 5/21/2019
20 Cotterel Texas Washington 5/21/2019
21 Cedars Oneida Lake, NY Idaho 5/29/2019
22 Cedars Lake Minnetonka, MN Washington 6/2/2019
23 Hwy 93 Lake Mead, NV Montana 6/4/2019
24 Malad Lake Havasu, AZ Idaho 6/6/2019
25 Hwy 20 Lake Michigan, MI California 6/6/2019

Banner and Photos: Idaho State Department of Agriculture.