Okanagan Lake free of invasive mussels, says non-profit society

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It’s been 11 years since Okanagan Lake started being tested for invasive mussels and it’s nan 11th twelvemonth that it received a cleanable measure of health.

The Okanagan and Similkameen Invasive Species Society (OASISS) tested 131 samples from 5 lakes crossed nan vale and recovered nothing,

The nine says invasive mussels are a detriment to North American waterways, and nan extremity is to support B.C.’s Southern Interior free of them — dissimilar galore different parts of nan continent, for illustration Manitoba’s Lake Winnipeg, which is infested pinch mussels.

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And successful September, nan Idaho Dept. of Agriculture announced that quagga mussels had been recovered successful nan mid-Snake River.  The location wherever they were discovered is astir 11 hours from nan B.C. border.

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“This find of invasive mussels truthful adjacent to B.C. reinforces nan value of monitoring and continuing our prevention efforts,” said OASISS head Lisa Scott.

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“The presence of invasive mussels would person lasting antagonistic impacts connected our lakes and rivers, arsenic we person seen successful different parts of Canada and nan U.S.”

These successes, Scott said, are successful ample portion owed to monitoring efforts funded by various bodies of government.

Scott said that nan Snake River find intends that nan Pacific Northwest is nary longer free of invasive mussels.

It’s not conscionable a insignificant issue, she explained. The financial and biology deed is expected to beryllium devastating if they ever make it done to section lakes and waterways.

Throughout nan region, it could mean millions of dollars of harm and impacts to freshwater lakes, she said.

“They could alteration things everlastingly successful nan Okanagan Valley for those who recreate successful our section waters. They could effect fisheries values, tourism and biodiversity,” she said.

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“If you’re a waterfront owner, your spot values could alteration because you’re going to person crisp shells and really smelly mussels coming up onto your beach.”

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And, of course, drinking h2o would beryllium threatened.

“It’s important everybody recognizes nan impacts and nan changes that could hap if mussels arrived and impacted our drinking water,” she said.

“Even our taxes would besides apt spell up because we’d person to retrofit each our municipal h2o infrastructure.”

Zebra and quagga mussels are intimately related mollusks that originate from freshwater lakes successful Russia and Ukraine and are non-native to North America. They unrecorded successful freshwater and are invasive. They are known to encrust and corrode difficult surfaces and origin superior harm to waters wherever they go established.

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