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DNR Aquatic Invasive Species

Minnesota continues to battle aquatic invasive species in certain lakes. As the state fights these threats, there are calls for the Department of Natural Resources to develop a more robust management plan.

DNR leaders say they're putting a new plan together, with invasive species detected in more waterways this summer. Jeff Forester, of Minnesota Lakes and Rivers Advocates, says he hopes it's a comprehensive strategy, with better coordination of on-the-ground efforts.

A bill in this year's Legislature called for a new management plan every five years. The DNR's Ann Pierce says that kind of timeline would require more federal reviews, potentially delaying prevention funding from Congress.

Carroll Schaal is with the Wisconsin DNR, which last updated its management plan in 2019. He acknowledges it was a big undertaking, and federal involvement is only one part of the approach.

On the Minnesota side, the DNR says its planning doesn't prevent making an alteration if a crisis prompts one. But it insists required updates aren't optimal in carrying out a broader plan.

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