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Zebra mussels found in Christmas Lake after experimental treatment

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Zebra mussels were found in a west metro lake where the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources had applied an experimental treatment to get rid of the aquatic invasive species, the DNR announced Friday.

State officials said last month a weeklong dive search in Christmas Lake turned up no signs of mussels.

However, 10 mussels were found in a new dive conducted this week by the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District, Blue Water Science, Waterfront Restorations, University of Minnesota.

The mussels were found just outside the 1-acre area that was treated, the Star Tribune reports.

DNR AIS Specialist Keegan Lund said in a press release:

The follow-up searches suggest that the treatment in the Christmas Lake public access area was effective in eliminating mussels from the area. Unfortunately, we found zebra mussels outside the treatment area. These zebra mussels have probably been attached to native mussels in the lake since last summer or fall.

The mussels were removed from the lake, and the DNR will continue monitoring it, FOX 9 reports.

The DNR applied a three-part treatment to the Shorewood lake near the public access last fall.

The first step was to put down Zequanox, an experimental product designed to kill off the zebra mussels, followed by a copper treatment of Earth Tex QZ, and then finally 1,000 potash, an agricultural compound was applied, FOX 9 notes.

This was the first time a treatment like this was used to Minnesota.

This invasive species is known to breed rapidly and clog pipes, motorboat engines, and leave nasty slices on swimmers’ feet.

It also crowds out native mussels and consumes the food sources of other aquatic animals.

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