Aquatic Invasive Species


Washington state law prohibits transporting any visible native and nonnative aquatic animals, plants or other organisms, as well as raw water on any boat, trailer, fishing gear or bait well. If found, law enforcement may stop you and require you to decontaminate your boat or gear. 

Permit required

An Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) Prevention Permit is required for non-Washington registered boats to launch in Washington waterways. This permit is not required for Washington registered boats, since an Aquatic Invasive Species prevention fee is applied when the boat is registered through the Department of Licensing.

To learn more and purchase an AIS prevention permit, visit the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife's website.


To prevent the increasing threat of invasive species, such as milfoil, zebra mussels and others:

  • Always drain all raw water from boats — including live wells, ballast tanks and transom wells — before leaving the water. Pull the drain plug after removing the boat from the water.
  • Remove all visible aquatic plants and animals from your boat, motor, trailer and other equipment before leaving the access area.
  • Remember to clean, drain and dry!
  • View other tips in the Boater Education Safety Course.


If you see invasive species, you can report them online at Washington Invasive Species Council, or call the reporting hotline at 877-9-INFEST.

Learn more about aquatic invasive species.