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Boats Carrying Invasive Mussels Intercepted At Ruedi

Jun 28, 2018

Signs at Ruedi Reservoir warn boaters of the hazards of invasive mussels. Inspectors have intercepted two boats carrying quagga mussels so far this summer.
Credit Elizabeth Stewart-Severy / Aspen Public Radio

Inspectors at Ruedi Reservoir have spotted invasive mussels on two boats so far this summer, and officials think there are more to come.

All vessels that use the boat ramp at Ruedi Reservoir go through an inspection process. It’s meant to keep the waters clear of zebra and quagga mussels, two highly destructive species that have infested many lakes and reservoirs, including Lake Powell.

The two contaminated boats had recently been to Powell.

 

“As long as we are kind of surrounded by infested waters, most critically Lake Powell, we are probably going to see more of this, rather than less,” said Mark Fuller, executive director of the Ruedi Water and Power Authority, which sponsors the boat inspection program.

This is not the first time the inspections have turned up the mussels, but Fuller said it’s rare to see this much action this early in the boating season. Quagga mussels were found in crevices and on anchors, in difficult to spot areas. The boats were decontaminated and allowed to enter Ruedi.

Fuller said this can serve as a reminder to boaters to be particularly careful in cleaning, draining and drying their vessels.