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Global News What Happened To...?

Zebra Mussels | 21

Global News What Happened To...?
Global News What Happened To...?
Brook Schryer recalled his first interaction with zebra mussels in the early 1990s. He was living with his family on Lake Scugog in Ontario and one fall, Schryer and his brothers pulled the family boat out of the water and noticed that it was double its normal weight. This was because of the sheer number of tiny mollusks that clung to the bottom of the boat.
The brothers scraped the mussels off the boat but at just five years old, Brook didn’t understand just how big of a problem the pesky mollusks would become.
Zebra mussels are native to the Black and Caspian seas region in southeastern Europe and in the 1980s they established themselves in the Great Lakes through ballast water from ships.
According to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada, as of 2020, the mussels have been found in Lake St. Clair, the Great Lakes, the St. Lawrence River, the Mississippi River watershed and most recently in Lake Winnipeg, the Red River and the Nelson River.
Zebra mussels have created huge changes in the ecosystems they have established in; they have also caused significant economic impacts. In the 1990s and early 2000s, attempts were made to prevent other invasive species from causing the same havoc.
On this episode of What happened to…? Erica Vella speaks with experts about the damage caused by zebra mussels and finds out what has been done to stop the spread of the invasive species and how can we prevent it from happening again.
Email: erica.vella@globalnews.ca
Resource for reporting invasive species in North America www.EDDMapS.org
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