The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) regulates aquatic plant removal and control through the Aquatic Plants and Fish pamphlet (WAC 220-660-290). These activities qualify as hydraulic projects and require a permit to protect fish (Chapter 77.55 RCW).
Download the Aquatic Plants and Fish pamphlet
How to use the Aquatic Plants and Fish pamphlet
- Save or print the pamphlet or request one from a WDFW office.
- Decide where you want to remove or control aquatic plants.
- Review the rules that cover your work.
- Obtain any additional permits from other agencies before starting work.
- Follow pamphlet rules.
Activities outside the Aquatic Plants and Fish pamphlet
You must apply for an individual HPA to use methods not allowed in the pamphlet. We will work with you to ensure your proposed activity does not harm fish. You must then follow the provisions in your individual HPA.
Other permissions and permits
You must get permission from landowners before entering their property.
Other agencies with an interest in aquatic plant removal and control
This pamphlet does not address using herbicides, or water column dye. Learn about these methods at the Washington Department of Ecology’s aquatic weed control technical assistance website.
Other federal, state, tribal, and local government agencies may have their own requirements for aquatic plant removal and control. Learn more about other required permits from the Governor’s Office for Regulatory Innovation and Assistance.