WINNIPEG — The Manitoba government is taking aim against zebra mussels with phase two of its assault on the species.
A detection and awareness campaign has been launched and will more than double the number of staff and equipment available for detection since zebra mussels were discovered in Lake Winnipeg.
“Fighting the expansion of this highly invasive species takes a concerted effort by everyone who enjoys our lakes and rivers,” said Conservation and Water Stewardship Minister Tom Nevakshonoff. “We took an aggressive approach to control zebra mussels last year in four harbours, but mussels survived outside the harbours, so now more than ever, we need everyone’s support and vigilance.”
Watercraft inspectors have taken decontamination units to locations such as the Emerson and Boissevain border crossings, and the Selkirk Park and Pine Falls boat launches, inspecting more than 200 watercraft and performing eight decontaminations from May 21-25, Nevakshonoff said.
A detection dog will also assist crews in finding zebra mussels and was deployed to Emerson this past weekend.
Adult mussels were recently found underneath a private dock in the Red River near Selkirk, but further monitoring will take place to determine whether they have successfully established in the northern portion of the Red River.
To report a zebra mussel or any other aquatic invasive species from a new location, take pictures and visit gov.mb.ca/conservation/waterstewardship/stopais or call toll-free 1-87-STOP AIS-0 (1-877-867-2470).
Earlier this week, Parks Canada announced a similar zebra mussel-tackling program for Riding Mountain National Park.