An aquatic invasive species (AIS) can either live in freshwater or marine environments. The majority of the species of concern to Manitoba, such as Zebra and Quagga mussels, Spiny Waterflea, Rusty Crayfish and Asian Carp are freshwater species. Manitoba currently has 15 aquatic invasive species.
Zebra Mussels in Manitoba
Zebra Mussels were confirmed in Lake Winnipeg in the fall of 2013 and the Red River and Cedar Lake 2015.
Zebra Mussels are small (1 – 3 cm), clam-like aquatic animals that are a significant environmental and economic concern to Manitoba. Adult Zebra Mussels have a shell and can strongly attach to water-based conveyances such as watercraft, trailers, water-based aircraft, ORVs and other water-related equipment. They can survive out of water for 7 to 30 days depending on temperature and humidity.
Once Zebra Mussels become established they cannot be eradicated, so it is extremely important to stop their spread.
Whiteshell Cottagers should ensure that they are taking measures to protect the lakes in provincial parks.
To Stop the Spread of Zebra Mussels
CLEAN + DRAIN + DRY your watercraft, trailer and all water-related equipment and DISPOSE of any unwanted bait in the trash.
Read more on the Conservation and Water Stewardship Website @ http://www.gov.mb.ca/waterstewardship/stopais/index.html