WRIGHT COUNTY, MN - Zebra mussels have been discovered in Locke Lake, near Clearwater in Wright County, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources confirmed.
In response to a report from a lake property owner whose children discovered a large number of zebra mussels attached to native mussels, DNR invasive species specialists investigated the location.
Later, the DNR affirmed that there were more adult zebra mussels in the lake, indicating that the population was reproducing.
“It’s helpful when lake users contact us if they find what might be an invasive species that’s new to a lake,” said Heidi Wolf, DNR invasive species unit supervisor. “Early detection is important because it can help prevent spread to other lakes.”
Regardless of whether a lake has invasive species, Minnesota law requires boaters and fishermen to comply with the following requirements:
• Remove aquatic plants and invasive species from watercraft and trailers, as well as from the environment.
• Drain all water from the tank by removing drain plugs and keeping them out of the tank when transporting it.
• Dispose of any unwanted bait in the garbage after transporting it.
The access point is difficult to see some invasive species since they are small and difficult to observe. Take one or more of the following precautions before relocating them to another body of water in order to remove or kill them:
• Spray the indicated area with high-pressure water.
• Rinse thoroughly with extremely hot water (120 degrees for at least two minutes or 140 degrees for at least 10 seconds).
• Keep the area dry for at least five days.
It is possible that zebra mussels will compete with local species for food and habitat, slash swimmers' feet, decrease the performance of boat motors, and cause expensive damage to water intake pipes if they are not controlled.
In the event that someone believes they have discovered zebra mussels or any other invasive species, they should call a Minnesota DNR aquatic invasive species specialist.
On the Minnesota DNR webpage, you can find more details about the Aquatic Invasive Species.
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