Vigilance needed to prevent zebra mussels from spreading beyond Lake Mendota

Vigilance needed to prevent zebra mussels from spreading beyond Lake Mendota

Experts say extra vigilance will be needed to prevent Lake Mendota zebra mussels from invading other lakes.

The invasive mussel species has caused a variety of problems, including more blue-green algae in the water. But it has not made it into Lake Monona.

Skipperbud’s Madison operations manager, John Swise, said that if you use your boat in Lake Mendota, consider a power spray and always empty the ballast tank every time you leave the water. 

“You’ll know what they are when you see them, and you can scrape them off by hand. Not that easy,” Swise said.

On Lake Monona, UW-Madison sophomore Jack Ralph knew all about what zebra mussels can do to boats after growing up in Webster, WI.

“(They) actually attach right to the boat. And they make it really a pain to clean and everything else. Not pleasant,” Ralph said.

Swise urged anyone who boats on Lake Mendota to also check to make sure mussel clusters did not end up invading certain boat cavities.

“if you see them, don’t ignore them. Get them off your boat. Be mindful that you are transporting an organism that may not belong somewhere,” Swise said.

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