Hot Water Method
For NZMS Give your gear a hot water bath (120 -130ºF) for at least five minutes. Water must remain the recommended temperature during soaking the equipment- Water in your bath tub may be able to maintain this temperature for the required time. Your dish washer should work well but you should check the water temperature in the dishwasher first. Multiple cycles may be required for the recommended duration. For Didymo, Whirling Disease and Quagga/Zebra Mussels 140ºF or higher is recommended but duration varies.
A NZ Biosecurity evaluation demonstrates that Didymo can be killed by submersion in water heated to 60ºC ( 140ºF) for 1 minute or 20 minutes at 45ºC ( 113ºF) of submersion. This is for none porous items that do not absorb water.
For boots with felt soles or other soft absorbent materials it takes full submersion in hot water for 40 minutes , at least 104ºF (40ºC). With using 5% dish detergent in the water then you can get away with 104ºF for 30 minutes. Note that 5% means 6.5 fluid oz. (over 3/4 cup) of dish detergent for each gallon of water. One needs to validate the temperature of the water was maintained through the whole process. Other soft items that absorb water will require similar treatment. Examples of these soft items would be leather uppers on boots etc. web straps, soft fabrics of boots, shirts, socks
A person can with some pain keep their hands in 104ºF water. At 140ºF the water is too hot for the hands to remain submerged.
The 100th Meridian website says for Boats and other Recreational equipment: "Live steam, boiling, and hot (> 140 ºF) power washing are all believed to be effective against all zebra/quagga mussel life stages. Work a small section at a time with a minimum exposure of 3 min. at full heat for each area."
Quagga/Zebra mussels, and WD.
Here is one way a camping fisherman says he achieves decontamination for NZMS:
"I've found one of those Zodi portable hot shower kits (http://www.zodi.com/web-content/ ) and a 5 gallon bucket makes a nice portable sterilizer without having to carry chemicals, and lets me take a hot shower while camping. The Zodi unit is a continuous operation heater. I just put the inlet and outlet hose in the same bucket, turn it on and let it run. I monitor the temperature with a cheap kitchen thermometer and once it gets up to temperature, I leave it running for another 5 minutes to be safe then shut it down."
Dry Out The Equipment:
The general guidelines recommends thoroughly drying the equipment. For Didymo many web sites recommend thoroughly drying the equipment to touch. Then allow another 24 min but 48 hours recommended before using the equipment. Thoroughly drying the equipment can be a lot harder than you think. Felt soles and other soft materials (fabric, fabric straps, rope, etc.) may take days to weeks to dry completely through the depth of the material. A testing program by the New Zealand Biosecurity demonstrated that microsopic organizisms readily penetrate in the interior of porous materials. You also have to make sure all creases and crevices outside and inside the equipment are completely dry, such as inside boots or boat bags. NZMS have survived several days in a dry environment and 50 days on a moist surface. Didymo also will survive if there is any moisture present
The "Protect Your Waters" website sponsored by The national Aquatic Nuisance Species (ANS) Task Force, the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the US Coast Guard recommends;" If possible, allow for 5 days of drying time before entering new waters."
Complete drying of equipment is a method recommended by New Zealand Biosecurity for killing Didymo on your equipment. Using heat to facilitate the drying helps.
For Killing Didymo, Whirling Disease -WD, Quagga/Zebra Mussels and NZMS- New Zealand Mud Snails
* Dry Heat will kill NZMS, and WD. Spray with "Commercial Solutions Formula 409 Cleaner Degreaser Disinfectant" or other soap/ detergent and let waders and boots dry in the hot sun for several hours. The air must be low humidity and over 84 Degrees F for 24 hours or 104 Degrees F (or higher) for 2 hours for NZMS and WD. (The reason for the soap is because it breaks down the mucus the mud snails utilizes to hold onto wet surfaces)
Any residual mud must be completely dried through. Inside surfaces such in boots and felt soles must be thoroughly dry also which typically takes a day to several days to thoroughly dry.For Didymo the New Zealand Biosecurity states the following "Relying on ambient drying as a stand-alone treatment for decontaminating highly absorbent risk goods such as felt-soled waders and boots is not recommended in situations where use between waterways is frequent (daily, weekly or even monthly). Drying should only be relied upon as a decontamination treatment if great care is taken to actively and completely dry the felt (such as by using a heat source where temperatures around the felt are assured of reaching 30 °C (86 °F)). Once the felt appears dry, complete dryness must be confirmed by a tactile inspection of the felt pile to the base of the fibers. Once completely dry, items must remain dry for at least another 48 hours before use in another waterway."
Felt soles can remain wet for several weeks even in the house. The above requires the felt to be dry all the way through the material. To a lesser degree this will also be true of other absorbent materials on your equipment. Laying the boots on the sides so the felt is exposed to the air should help speed the dry time. Additional heat may be required.
From a New Zealand Biosecurity Study recommendations:
"Drying should only be relied upon as a decontamination treatment if great care is taken to actively and completely dry the felt (such as by using a heat source where temperatures around the felt are assured of reaching 30 °C). Once the felt appears dry, complete dryness must be confirmed by a tactile inspection of the felt pile to the base of the fibres. Once completely dry, items must remain dry for at least 48 hours before use in another waterway. These findings for felt soles can be extrapolated to other absorbent materials."
Freeze Your Gear:
Freezing waders, boots and equipment for 4 hours minimum (for those winter die hard addicts or those with unused freezer space). ALL The interior recesses must be frozen, also. Additional time must be added for the recesses and insides of boots to reach freezing as well as the thick absorbent parts of items. Thus the best thing is to freezing all over night. Note - handle your frozen waders and boots carefully and thaw out before bending or unfolding. Frozen water absorbed by breathable materials, foams and leather has the potential to crack the gear material when bending it.
Didymo - Freezing temperature = 0° C minimum (32° F)
NZMS - Freezing temperature = 0° C (32° F) minimum
Whirling Disease = -20° C (-4° F) minimum
Quagga/ Zebra Mussels = 0° C (32° F) minimum
This kills Didymo, NZ mud snails, Whirling disease, Didymo, Quagga/Zebra Mussels.
Washing Your Wading Dog: When you take your favorite fishing buddy, your dog, with you he/she walks in the same river bottom you do and thus can easily transport organisms as well as you can. Therefore, before taking your pet to another body of water you need to wash your dog with water as warm as possible and brush it's coat. Clean well around paws. Better yet, don't take your dog to another body of water with you for 7 days as the above method is not rock sold effective. It is a lot of work to wash your dog.
for use with the above cleaning methods
Most of the following chemicals are not universally available in any given locale. Neither are you likely to find any one method of cleaning discussed on this page as being universally useable in your various fishing situations. Thus you will need to select the chemical and/or method that best fits your given situation.
Products containing biocides or algaecides are registered for certain uses. When one uses it for another purpose or beyond the product specifications it is against the law.
Formula 409 with Degreaser & Disinfectant - a "Commercial Solutions " product:
**** ALERT ****
The only Formula 409® Product tested for effectiveness against NZMS and be safe for boots and waders is:
"Commercial Solutions Formula 409® Cleaner Degreaser Disinfectant"
It can be found in some stores. Not grocery stores, though.
The only other Formula 409 products with the same disinfectant in it is:
"Formula 409® All Purpose Cleaner Antibacterial Kitchen Lemon Fresh"
available in many locations but probably in small containers that you may find inconvenient.
"Formula 409® All Purpose Cleaner Antibacterial " is a new product with the same Antibacterial compound now available in some locations such as Costco and this one comes in large 1.4 Gallon containers.
Most Formula 409 products do not have a disinfectant / antibacterial in it. The disinfectant or antibacterial is what will kill the snails. Note that Clorox brand cleaners with disinfect contain chlorine as the disinfectant. See the chlorine section for info about chlorine.
Other types of Formula 409, as well as other cleaning fluids with surfactants and detergents, are helpful in that it would force the snail to loosen it's hold on the surface it is hanging on to so that the cleaning processes can wash them off. But it would do little to kill any. Thus it is, by far, best if you use the formulations listed above for loosening the snails hold plus killing them. Other cleaning fluids formulations may damage wading equipment.
Formula 409® products which contain Disinfectant or Antibacterial are the only correct 409 products to use. The product straight from the bottle is best but most places still recommend a 50% solution. The 409 product must have a disinfectant / antibacterial in the product for it to kill the snails. See the full name of the products below.
Both products can be kept and reused a number of times. However, the disinfectant is susceptible to being neutralized by organ material such as dirt and grass thus remove as much as reasonable before soaking.
Spray application is unacceptable for this product.This solution is deemed safe for your waders and boots though some visual aberrations may show. A number of other household cleaners were tested but they affected integrity of wading equipment. Long term Impacts of many fisherman wading with this chemical on their boots has not been studied. Thus rinse your wading equipment well, especially felt soles. The disinfectant in these two Formula 409 products is a quat, Quaternary Ammonium Compound, A test at U.C. Davis has demonstrated the quat in Formula 409 kills the WD spores in 10 minutes at 1500 PPM (50/50 mixture of Formula 409 Disinfectant). I have not located any validation that Formula 409 will kill Didymo however New Zealand Biosecurity testing of another product that contains the same quat does kill Didymo.
Copper Sulfate Solution (252 mg/L Cu) -
Immersion and Dry bag methods work. Another option for this solution which maybe handy on a multiple day traveling trip is to use the spray application for 5 minutes minimum. Copper Sulfate solution is the only tested solution proven to be effective at killing NZMS when sprayed on to the equipment.
Some brands of Copper Sulfate are registered in Colorado as herbicide and algaecide. Probably would kill invasive weeds like hydrilla and algae like Didymo on your wading equipment. Solution can be kept and reused many times. This solution is deemed safe for your waders and boots. (CA DFG test Result) Long term impacts of many fisherman wading with this chemical on their boots has not been studied. Thus rinse your wading equipment well, especially felt soles.
This method has been proven to be effective for killing NZMS. Copper sulfate will kill Quagga/Zebra Mussels- concentration and duration period unknown. Not data for WD. Copper sulfate kills Didymo. Copper sulfate has commonly been used for many years to kill algae in lakes ponds, and canals. I suspect that soaking in tub would increase it's effectiveness but penetration all the way into felt soles may be a problem just like it is with all other chemical solutions. The use of detergents with it should improve the penetration since detergents have surfactants.Copper Sulfate Pentahydrate Crystal is commonly sold at Hardware stores under various brand names as a root killer for sewers. Typically the instructions call for dumping 2 lb. of crystal into the commode. Some Farm and Ranch stores carry 50 LB bags of Copper Sulfate.
In the western US, where there are many mines, some rivers are listed as impaired waterways due to high copper content. The state of Colorado has several rivers listed as such (The Arkansas, Colorado, Clear Creek, South Platte, Gunnison Rivers). Copper is hard to remove from the water supply to maintain compliance with federal regulations. Plus most water treatment plants rely on biological processing to treat waste water before releasing the water back into the river. High copper content can kill the biological organisms in the treatment plant. Biocides and algaecides such as quats can also cause the same problem.
To help avoid the potential of exceeding copper content limits some municipalities discourage the use of high concentration copper based compounds such as copper sulfate pentahydrate. For the same reason some municipalities have stopped using copper sulfate in lakes and reservoirs to kill algae. It is recommended that you keep this in mind when disposing of rinse water and unused solution. Contact your local government regarding regulations.
Golden Colorado asks city Vendors for voluntary compliance to keep copper sulfate pentahydrate root killer off their shelves since in a number of years past the City had exceeded copper content limits in their fresh water and waste water. The city no longer uses copper sulfate in it's water storage reservoirs to control algae and weeds. West Denver Trout Unlimited recommends not dumping Copper sulfate into rivers, ponds, lakes, storm drains or sewers.
(which contains 3.5% Sodium hypochlorite - NaClO)- A solution of household bleach is NO LONGER recommended for NZMS. The 2005 CA DFG testing report demonstrated bleach is very ineffective at killing snails when it's operculum is closed. (Trap door kind of thing the snail closes over it's opening). A solution of bleach may cause some discoloration. Strong concentrations can affect wading equipment material integrity. However, a weak 2-10% solution of bleach (by Volume) is still effective for killing other invasive species such as Whirling Disease (10% bleach by volume solution soaking the item for 10 minutes), Didymo (2% by volume solution soaking the item for at least 1 minute -longer for items or parts of items that absorb water), and Zebra Mussels. Thus you will still see it promoted on many state wildlife websites and the "Protect Your Waters" website.
10% solutions = Put 13 fluid oz. in pail then add water to the 1 gallon mark.
2% solution = Put 3 fluid oz in pail then add water to the 1 gallon mark.
Bleach solutions break down quickly. They should be replaced daily per The New Zealand Biosecurity test reports. More often if heavily used.
Pure VinegarThis method NOT tested on NZMS,and WD. Not recommended for Didymo.
Soaking in pure vinegar is reported as being effective for Quagga / Zebra mussels. Required Soak time varies from source to source as; 20 minutes to 4 hours minimum but 24 hours recommended. Vinegar has not been tested for effectiveness on NZMS or Whirling Disease. The New Zealand Biosecurity does not recommend this for Didymo. It takes a pH of 4 or less to kill Didymo. Acetic acid, vinegar, has a slightly lower pH of 3. However any wetness will dilute the vinegar quick to where the pH will rise past 4. Thus Biosecurity does not recommend the use of vinegar.
: A 2-5% solution will kill Didymo. For 1 minute soak time of non-adsorbing materials 5% is required which would be 6.5 oz (a little more than 3/4 cup of detergent) for each gallon of water. A 2% solution requires 10 minutes soak time. Longer for absorbent materials. Palmolive and Sunlight were used in the New Zealand tests. Green products are less effective and not recommended for disinfecting. Dish detergent does not work for NZMS and appears to not have been tested or is ineffective on WD, and mussels.
Though soap will not kill New Zealand Mudsnails it will help to release them from the surface they cling to. Thus washing them off of your equipment will be easier. But if you don't kill the invasive then you are leaving the possibility of the invasive remaining in your equipment crevices and recesses.
This method has been proven to be effective for Didymo. I have no data for WD, Quagga/ Zebra Mussels. Does not work for NZMS.All of the above solutions for cleaning and maintaining your gear are recommendations aggregated from various web postings from CA DFG, New Zealand Environmental Commission, and other reputable organization sites. Please do further research to educate yourselves as there is scores of information available online to help you decide which solution to use.
Remember; scrub, wipe, rinse and hope like hell it works!