Michigan’s aquatic ecosystems are experiencing significant negative effects from aquatic invasive species (AIS) that are already present, and the state’s waters are continually threatened by new invasions. The most widely used definition of invasive species that is derived directly from the National Invasive Species Council is as follows:
“An invasive species is defined as a species that is not native and whose introduction causes, or is likely to cause, economic or environmental harm or harm to human health.”
The introduction of AIS into the Great Lakes and inland state waters is a source of biological pollution that has significant negative effects on natural resources, human health, recreational opportunities, and other human values throughout the state and region. AIS may compete with native species for food and habitat. AIS can also have significant economic effects on waterfront property values, tourism, utilities, and other industries. Michigan Department of Environmental Quality is gaining momentum and has the expertise and dedicated citizens and partners to be a frontrunner in the fight against AIS.