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Zebra Mussels Discovered in Three More Locations in Minnesota

Images via WikiMedia and Minnesota DNR.

More bad news for Minnesota boaters and anglers, as zebra mussels are discovered in three more locations.

Less than two weeks after reports of two other Minnesota bodies of water being infested, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is reporting three more discoveries of the invasive species.

Clearwater Lake in Wright and Stearns Counties, Ruth Lake in Crow Wing County and the Red River will be the latest to receive the “infested” designation.

The DNR said in a press release that the infestation of Ruth and Clearwater Lakes is likely the result of people moving boats or docks without properly inspecting and cleaning them first. Zebra mussels can also be spread in water not drained from watercraft.

zebra mussel

Officials located eight more zebra mussels in Clearwater Lake during their survey after a citizen reported finding one attached to a native mussel. A survey of Ruth Lake is still on-going.

With the Red River, it seems it may have only been a matter of time for it to also become infested. The Otter Trail River, which received the infested designation in 2012, flows into the Red River. Zebra mussels often spread via currents.

The DNR once again asks Minnesota anglers and boaters to remain vigilant to help stop the spread of invasive species. “It is imperative that people take action and follow state AIS laws,” the press release stated. “Boaters are required by law to clean weeds and debris from their boats, drain water from their boats, bilges and live wells, and dispose of unwanted bait in the trash.”

The DNR also asks anyone moving docks or lifts from one body of water to another to leave them out of the water for a minimum of 21 days before placing in another body of water.

The discovery brings the total number of lakes with zebra mussel discoveries up to five this year.

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Zebra Mussels Discovered in Three More Locations in Minnesota