Avoid the ‘STD of the Sea;’ Div. of Wildlife Resources shows you how

Posted at 1:47 PM, Jul 01, 2014
and last updated 2014-07-01 16:19:38-04

STD from Div Wildlife Resources Mussels

The Independence Day weekend means a lot of people will probably be hitting the water in their boats.

The Division of Wildlife Resources wants to make sure you’re practicing safe boating so you can help stop the spread of what they call “the STD of the Sea.”

According to the DWR,  the “skiff-transmitted disease,” or invasive mussels, is a threat to Utah lakes.

The mussels form dense, destructive  colonies that encrust almost any underwater surface.

Mussel infestations can destroy fisheries, pollute shoreline and beaches, damage boats and equipment and they cost millions to control.

Officials said the mussels are so small they could be hitching a ride on your boat without you even knowing.

So how can you prevent the STD?

1. Clean all plants and mud from your boat trailer and equipment.

2. Drain water from bilges, ballasts, live wells and engines.

3. Allow your boat to completely dry before launching it in other waters.

To ensure you aren’t carrying the STD, the DNR has a list of “decontamination stations” to help you across the state.