|Zebra Mussels Found in Lake Hiawatha|
|MNDNR has Confirmed Finding; Lake Was Declared Infested in 2010|
|The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB) has confirmed the presence of zebra mussels in Lake Hiawatha in Minneapolis.MPRB water quality staff discovered the zebra mussels on Wednesday, August 28. Samples were delivered to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (MNDNR), who confirmed the zebra mussel finding.
Lake Hiawatha was declared infested with zebra mussels in August of 2010 due to its connection to Minnehaha Creek. Minnehaha Creek flows out of Lake Minnetonka and through Lake Hiawatha, and zebra mussels were discovered in Lake Minnetonka in July 2010. Lake Hiawatha is connected to the Mississippi River, which has been designated as a zebra mussel infested water body by the MNDNR.
The MPRB has been monitoring Lake Hiawatha and other Minneapolis lakes for zebra mussels since fall 2010. Zebra mussels have not been found in any other Minneapolis lake.
In 2012, the MPRB Board of Commission took action to implement an aquatic invasive species (AIS) prevention program to prevent the spread of AIS from lake to lake. Components of the AIS prevention plan include inspections at public boat launches at Lake Harriet, Lake Calhoun and Lake Nokomis, ongoing public education program and placement of bait disposal receptacles at many of the MPRB’s most popular fishing spots.
The establishment of zebra mussels in Lake Hiawatha underscores the need for continued diligence in complying with the state’s laws to prevent and curb the spread of invasive species. Boaters and anglers need to be extra vigilant in ensuring their boat and equipment are clean before leaving a lake access and to contact the MNDNR right away if they find suspicious aquatic animals or plants.
Anglers, boaters and other recreationists must remove all aquatic plants, zebra mussels, and other prohibited invasive species, drain water from all water equipment including portable bait containers, and drain bilges and livewells by removing the drain plug before leaving the boat landing.
More information about zebra mussels, how to inspect boats and other water-related equipment, and a current list of designated infested waters is available on the MNDNR website.