WANTED

ZEBRA MUSSELS

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SCIENTIFIC NAME

Dreissena polymorpha

DESCRIPTION

Animal, Aquatic,are freshwater bivalve mollusks that typically have a dark and white (zebra-like) pattern on their shells, but may be any combination of colors from off-white to dark brown

ORIGIN

Zebra mussels are native to freshwater rivers and lakes in Eastern Europe and western Asia.

THREAT TOWARDS UNITED STATES

They over eat the algae that most of the fishes depends on.
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HOW DOES IT SPREAD?

  • Zebra mussels can reproduce by the end of their first year.They usually spawn in the early spring until winter, when the water temperature is about 68*F.A fertilized egg results in a free-swimming planktonic larva called a veliger.Veligers are about the diameter of a human hair and are so small you can’t see them without a microscope.The veliger floats in a water column for 1-5 weeks and then as it grows it begins to sink and search for a hard surface on which to live and grow.

HOW DID IT GET TO THE UNITED STATES?

Unlike other freshwater mussel larvae, zebra mussels don’t attach to fish or other hosts prior to adulthood. Consequently, they can easily spread anywhere that water currents, wildlife, or human activities take them. One of the zebra mussel’s most effective means of dispersion is travelling in bilge water of boats.

WHAT ARE SOME WAYS IT CAN BE CONTROLLED?

Zebra Mussels can not be controlled in the wild. The spread of zebra mussels can be prevented by draining all of the water from boats, live wells and bait wells.