Do zebra mussels in our lakes have an upside? State experts say no

  • June 19, 2018
  • News

An animal the size of a grain of sand with the growth potential of about an inch and half has infested Lake Travis. Its sharp shell can cut up lakegoers’ feet and its rapid reproduction can cause economic and ecological damage.

In less than a year, the population of zebra mussels in Lake Travis has boomed and found its way downstream to Lake Austin. Because of the size of the lakes, eradication is an unlikely option. Does this invasive species have an upside? At least one state expert says no.

Zebra mussels attach to any stable substrate, including the rock, sand, gravel and concrete in Lake Austin.

“Just because you don’t see them, doesn’t mean they’re not there,” said Monica McGarrity, aquatic invasive species team leader for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Any perceived benefits that the mussels might have for the lakes come with drawbacks… Read more from mystatesman.com