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Lakes officially ‘infested’ with zebra mussels

Monday, June 21, 2021 by Tai Moses

It’s official, says the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department: Lake Brownwood, Inks Lake and Medina Lake in the Colorado and San Antonio River basins are now considered “infested” with zebra mussels. To reach infested status, a lake must have an “established, reproducing population” of the invasive mollusks, and recent sampling shows that the mussels are “fully established” in the three bodies of water. Monica McGarrity, a senior scientist with TPWD, said in a news release, “As zebra mussels are continuing to spread westward and southward to new areas in Texas and as those lakes become fully infested, nearby lakes have an increased risk of being invaded and it is vital that boaters take steps to clean, drain and dry boats to help slow the spread. Boats owned or recently purchased that have been stored in the water must be decontaminated before moving them to another lake to prevent the spread of these highly invasive mussels.” With zebra mussels now inhabiting 32 Texas lakes – with 27 of them designated fully infested – TPWD has kicked its prevention and boater education program into high gear in an effort to protect the rest of the state’s lakes from invasive species.

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