McKenzie River Reflections - Make the McKenzie Connection!

Paddlers need a permit


February 13, 2013

2013 Aquatic Invasive Species Prevention Permit

Checking a paddlerTwo inspectors at work at the Ashland inspection station in 2012.

The Oregon State Marine Board and Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife remind operators of paddlecraft (kayaks, canoes, paddleboards, sailboats, etc.) that it’s time to buy an aquatic invasive species prevention permit for 2013.   

Permits are required for paddlecraft and other non-motorized vessels 10 feet long and longer for both residents and nonresidents.  Permits are transferable between boats, but each boat on the water needs to carry a permit.

There are many purchasing options:

· Permits can be purchased at ODFW license sales agents, ODFW offices that sell licenses and on ODFW’s online license sales website for $7 ($5 for permit, $2 agent fee.)

· The Marine Board sells one-or two-year Tyvek tags for non-motorized boats for $5 and $10, respectively, that can be purchased at the Marine Board office, 435 Commercial Street NE, Salem or ordered via mail by downloading an application and returning the form to the Marine Board.  The Marine Board also has a number of dealers throughout the state that sell the Tyvek tags.  A map of ODFW and Marine Board point-of-sale locations can be found online.

· Out-of-state permits are available through ODFW for both motorized boaters ($22) and paddlers ($7).

Boat Inspection Stations Open

Since 2012, people hauling boats have been required to stop at marked boat inspection stations.  In 2012, ODFW conducted 4,675 watercraft inspections and 51 watercraft were decontaminated from some form of invasive species (plant or crustacean).  Eighteen of those vessels, including a kayak and folding boat, were contaminated with quagga or zebra mussels.  Roadside compliance was approximately 70%.  “As the program evolves and more people learn about the importance of this prevention program, we’re hoping compliance will improve,” says Glenn Dolphin, Aquatic Invasive Species Coordinator for the Marine Board.  “It’s important for people coming into Oregon to know about mandatory inspections and that the kayak or canoe strapped to the top of their vehicle is required to stop.  Kayaks and canoes are boats.” Dolphin adds.  A surprising amount of people traveling through the state are unaware that paddlecraft are in fact, boats.  Roadside signs alert vehicles trailering or carrying boats to pull over at an inspection station.  Most inspections take less than 10 minutes.   If a boat is found to have invasive species, specially trained inspectors decontaminate the boat on site by the watercraft inspection team with a hot water pressure washer.  There is no penalty or cost for the boat owner if their boat is found to be contaminated with invasive species, however failure to stop could result in a $110 fine.

 “Everyone who operates a boat –manual or under power needs to understand how important it is to clean, drain and dry their boat after every use,” Dolphin emphasizes.  “This is the only sure-fire way to protect our waterways and prevent the spread of any invaders or introduce new ones.  You know what they say, ‘an ounce of prevention’ which translates into real dollars if we get an infestation.  Remember Diamond Lake?”

Revenue from the Aquatic Invasive Species Prevention Program goes into a dedicated fund used solely for inspection stations; decontamination equipment; public education and outreach efforts; special patrols and staff positions (including trained inspectors) to administer the program.  To learn more about the Aquatic Invasive Species Prevention Program, where to purchase permits, and the accomplishments to date, view the 2012 annual report at



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