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Lake Walter E. Long ‘infested’ with zebra mussels

Thursday, September 1, 2022 by Tai Moses

It’s official, and it’s bad: Travis County’s Lake Walter E. Long is “infested” with “an established, reproducing population” of zebra mussels, according to a release from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Biologists with the city’s Watershed Protection Department found two adult mussels in the lake in early August, “indicating the presence of an established population.” TPWD’s Brian Van Zee said the invasive, non-native mollusks “have now spread to 34 Texas lakes, with 30 now fully infested, but there are far more lakes in Texas that still haven’t been invaded and are at risk.” Zebra mussels fasten themselves to the sides of boats, which is how they are easily spread to other waterways. Van Zee urged boaters to clean, drain and dry their boats and gear before leaving a lake – critical steps he says “can make a big difference in protecting our Texas lakes.” Any boat that has been stored at Lake Walter E. Long is likely infested with mussels and now “poses an extremely high risk for moving these invasive species to a new lake.” Owners of such boats should call TPWD at 512-389-4848 for guidance on decontamination.

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