Zebra Mussel Refresher

Since Zebra Mussels were discovered in Big McKenzie Lake in 2016, Burnett County has mobilized an effort to control the spread. In January 2018, new legislation was passed that makes it a violation to NOT use a decontamination station when one is available at public launches.*

The TLA Board received a mailing in early spring 2018 outlining the responsibilities for a lake association that wants to install a decontamination station. The Board asked Burnett County conservationist Dave Ferris (who spoke at our 2018 Spring meeting) to inspect our public access. He determined that it would not be suitable for such a station due to a number of factors. Mainly, it’s too small, the run off from the decontamination process could not be contained and it’s surrounded by private property.

After a conversation with Dave, it was agreed that the best way for all Tabor Lake property owners to keep the lake free of aquatic invasive species (AIS) is to follow watercraft decontamination best practices. We just saved a bunch of money, people!

Here’s the short version for you and your guests:
• INSPECT boats, trailers and related equipment.
• REMOVE all attached aquatic plants and animals.
• DRAIN all water from boats, vehicles, and equipment.
• NEVER MOVE live fish or bait away from a waterbody.

Here is a DNR web page that further explains what boaters and landowners need to do to contribute to AIS-free lakes.

We are a bit lucky in that we have a low calcium level in our lake, but remember when the big scare was Eurasian Water-Milfoil? Getting in the habit of inspection has no down-side. Please also have your visitors decontaminate their watercraft prior to use in Tabor Lake.

One of our members went to a Zebra Mussel session at the NW Lakes Conference 2018, see this page.

By the way, if you’re into water gardening, check out this article: Water Gardening_LakeLines-Fall-2018. As is Japanese Beetles weren’t enough trouble!

Regular mussel covered with Zebra Mussels (MNDNR); Detail (Wikipedia).

Native mussel covered with Zebra Mussels (MNDNR); Detail (Wikipedia).


*Burnett County Board of Supervisors Resolution #2018-01, an amendment to Illegal Transportation of Aquatic Plants and Invasive Animals Ordinance.