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Green Visions
A Northland Morning feature focusing on local environmental issues, heard Wednesdays at 8:20 a.m. Green Visions is brought to you by All Energy Solar, Minnesota Power Energy Conservation Program, and Energy Plus.

Green Visions: Aquatic Invasives with Matthew Santo

A lakeside of tall grass, pine trees, and lily pads
ED [via Flickr]

This interview originally aired on March 8, 2023 and was rebroadcast February 21, 2024

The ice fishing season is winding down and the boating season is still months into the future, but education regarding aquatic invasive species is ongoing. Matthew Santo is the Invasive Species Specialist with 1854 Treaty Authority and has been working on both research and outreach.

Some of the research has yielded regulations for anglers. "All the live bait available in Minnesota is produced within Minnesota and the idea behind that is to restrict the number of invasive species coming into the state," says Santo. Ideally, this effort will stabilize the aquatic invasives.

Beyond regulations and research, the outreach continues. The "clean, drain, dry" principle is still a requisite for anglers. This goes for ice fishing as well. Additionally, left over bait should be disposed of or gifted to another angler; don't dump it into the water. Santo notes that this can seem counter intuitive. "If [the live bait] is on a hook it's probably not going to live long enough to impact the water," says Santo. Inversely, a handful of live minnows released into the water could ultimately have a drastic effect on the ecosystem.

More information can be found online at the Minnesota DNR website and on the 1854 Treaty Authority website.

Luke Moravec is the host for Northland Morning on The North 103.3. He’s also a local actor, musician and writer. He loves puzzles, riddles and fun mysteries.
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