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New Hampshire

Help protect New Hampshire's waters by learning what you can do to Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers. Aquatic nuisance species spread quickly, wreak havoc on native plants and animals, degrade the quality of aquatic resources and make waters unusable for boating fishing and swimming.

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Who is Helping Protect New Hampshire Waters?

To learn more or get involved in New Hampshire programs, check out these agencies and organizations that are actively involved in education and regulatory actions regarding aquatic nuisance species (ANS) in New Hampshire:

NH Fish and Game Department

The Fish and Game Department regulates fishing and importation and release of animals (vertebrates and invertebrates) in the state, including possession, transport, and use of ANS by anglers, bait dealers, and aquaculture producers.

NH Department of Environmental Services, Exotic Species Program

New Hampshire 's Exotic Aquatic Plant Species Program, authorized by RSA 487, focuses on submerged exotic aquatic plants. Funding for the program is through a state fee affixed to boat registrations.

Department of Safety, Marine Patrol Bureau

The Marine Patrol is responsible for enforcement of boating laws. They occasionally become involved in inspections for illegal plant transport on boats and trailers.

New Hampshire Lakes Association (NHLA)

The NHLA is a statewide, nonprofit, member-supported organization dedicated to protecting New Hampshire 's lakes, which are integral to the quality of life and economic health of the State. The NHLA serves as a source of information about lakes and lake issues through our educational materials and programs, and through our work with state legislators. They advocate on issues of water quality, boater education and boating safety, invasive species prevention, appropriate public access and a balance of lake uses.

ANS Related Regulations

Definitions

Importing and Releasing Wildlife (RSA 207:14)

Release of Fish (Fis 402.06)

Possession and Use of Live Fish for Bait (Fis 402.08)

Importation of Finfish for Bait (Fis 502.07)

Prohibited Species Importation and Possession

Prohibited Species Release (Fis 805.01)

Prohibited Aquatic Plant Species (RSA 487:16-a)

Exotic Aquatic Plant Prevention Program (RSA 487:26)

Definitions

"Aquatic species" includes, but are not limited to, all fish, crustaceans, mollusks, invertebrates and aquatic plants that usually inhabit fresh water. (RSA 211:62-e)

Exotic species means wildlife that is non-indigenous (not naturally occurring or naturalized in New Hampshire ). (Fis 801.08)

Import means bringing or causing wildlife to be transported into the state by any means. (Fis 801.11)

Prohibited means the wildlife species or activity such as collection, importation, transportation, possession, sale, transfer of release of that wildlife is not allowed. (Fis 801.19)

Wildlife refers to all species of mammals, birds, fish, mollusks, crustaceans, amphibians, invertebrates, reptiles or their progeny or eggs which, whether raised in captivity or not, are normally found in a wild state. (RSA 207:1, XXXV)

Importing and Releasing Wildlife (RSA 207:14)

No person shall import, possess, sell, exhibit, or release any live marine species or wildlife, or the eggs or progeny thereof, without first obtaining a permit from the NH Fish and Game Department's Executive Director.

Release of Fish (Fis 402.06)

No live fish shall be released in any waters of the state unless they shall be returned into the waters from where taken except as permitted by the executive director under a permit to release.

No person shall have live fish in their possession when leaving the freshwaters of the state, except those species allowed to be possessed and used as live fish for bait.

Possession and Use of Live Fish for Bait (Fis 402.08)

Only the following species shall be possessed and used as live fish for bait when fishing any freshwaters of the state:

Common Name(s)

Scientific Name

Blacknose dace

Rhinichthys atratulus

Bridle shiner

Notropis bifrenatus

Common/white sucker

Catostomus commersoni

Common shiner/redfin shiner

Notropis cornutus

Creek chub

Semotilius atromaculatus

Creek chubsucker

Erimyzon oblongus

Emerald shiner

Notropis atherinoides

Fallfish

Semotilus corporalis

Golden shiner/Arkansas shiner

Notemigonus crysoleucas

Hunt's shiner/silvery minnow

Hybagnathus regius

Longnose dace

Rhinichthys cataractae

Longnose sucker

Catostomus catostomus

Northern/lake chub

Couesius plumbeus

Northern redbelly dace

Phoxinus eos

Rainbow smelt

Osmerus mordax

Spottail shiner

Notropis hudsonius

Tomcod/killifish

Fundulus sp.


Importation of Finfish for Bait (Fis 502.07)

Licensed bait dealers shall obtain the permit from the NH Fish and Game Department before importing any shipment or lot of baitfish from hatchery sources or wild stock. Such permits shall be issued to import only:


Common Name(s)

Scientific Name

Common/white sucker

Catostomus commersoni

Common shiner

Notropis cornutus

Creek chub sucker

Erimyzon oblongus

Emerald shiner

Notropis atherinoides

Fallfish

Semotilus corporalis

Golden shiner/Arkansas shiner

Notemigonus crysoleucas

Hunt's shiner/silvery minnow

Hybagnathus regius

Northern creek chub

Semotilus atromaculatus

Northern/lake chub

Couesius plumbeus

Rainbow smelt

Osmerus mordax

Spottail shiner

Notropis hudsonius

Tomcod/killifish

Fundulus sp.

No baitfish shall be imported from states known to have waters infested with zebra mussels or from states which allow the import of baitfish from states infested with zebra mussels unless the source of baitfish is approved free of zebra mussels (Fis 502.09 and Fis 502.10).

Prohibited Species Importation and Possession

No person shall be issued a permit to import (Fis 803.03) or possess (Fis 804.03) the following designated prohibited wildlife:

Fish Walking catfish Clarias batrachus
Grass carp/ white amur Ctenopharyngodon idella
European rudd Scardinius erythophthalmus
Round goby Neogobius monachus
Invertebrates Zebra mussel Dreissena polymorpha
All non-indigenous crayfish  

Prohibited Species Release (Fis 805.01)

No person shall be issued a permit to release the following designated prohibited wildlife:

Amphibians All indigenous imported into the state
All exotics
Reptiles All indigenous imported into the state

All exotics

Fish All species listed as prohibited for importation and release
All non-indigenous species
Any species not naturalized in New Hampshire

Prohibited Aquatic Plant Species (RSA 487:16-a)

The sale, distribution, importation, purchase, propagation, transportation, or introduction of exotic aquatic weeds into the state is prohibited.

The following is a list of prohibited aquatic species in New Hampshire:

Scientific Name
Common Name
Myriophyllum hterophyllum variable milfoil
Myriophyllum spicatum Eurasian milfoil
Cambomba caroliniana fanwort
Hydrilla verticillata
Trapa natans water chestnut
Myriophyllum aquaticum parrot feather
Potamogeton crispus curly leaf pondweed

Lythrum salicara

Lythrum virgatum

Lythrum alatum

purple loosestrife

Phyragmites australis

Phyragmites communis

common reed
Egeria densa brazilian elodea
Hydrocharis morsus-ranae frogbit
Butomus umbellatus flowering rush
Najas minor European naiad
Nymphoides peltata yellow floating heart

Exotic Aquatic Plant Prevention Program (RSA 487:26)

There is a grant program administered by the Department of Environmental Services for the allocation of money to state agencies, non-profit organizations, and municipalities or political subdivisions of the state which seek to administer a milfoil and other exotic aquatic plants prevention program, and to institutions of higher learning which seek to conduct research on milfoil and other exotic aquatic plants remediation techniques.

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Check out the Latest News about the Stop Aquatic Hitchhiker Campaign and the aquatic hitchhiker problem.

Common Hitchhikers

Zebra Mussels
Hydrilla
Whirling Disease
Spiny Water Fleas
Round Gobies
Water Hyacinth

Video Clips
Asian Carp in the Upper Mississippi River
(Real Video format)

Round Goby
(Quicktime Format)
New Audio Messages for Traveler Information Systems
Zebra Mussel (mp3)
Zebra Mussel #2 (mp3)