Zebra mussel question
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  1. #1
    PWCToday Newbie
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    Zebra mussel question

    I知 new to the sport. Last weekend, I scouted out a new to me COE park. There is a sign posted in the parking lot, warning that Zebra mussel are known to be in the lake. Should I avoid this lake this summer? I知 sure while I知 cruising the lake at 30 - 40, they can稚 cling to my PWC. The only time I知 stationary is while launching or loading. If I inspect my craft after being on the lake, should I be ok?

  2. #2
    PWCToday Regular MrScudder's Avatar
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    Re: Zebra mussel question

    Drain at the ramp, if there's a hose rinse off there. Be sure to clean when you get home and thoroughly inspect so you don't spread them.

  3. #3
    Attention ***** PWCToday.com Is My Home Away From Home JonnyX2's Avatar
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    Re: Zebra mussel question

    After the ride, completely drain and dry the ski, zero water in the hull, towel it out if necessary.
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  4. #4
    Resident Guru bird's Avatar
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    Re: Zebra mussel question

    The biggest thing for a jet ski is to clear out the sitting water in the exhaust, engine, waterbox, bilge, and pump.

    "Veliger larvae may also be transported in the "residual water" remaining inside boat compartments when trailered boats are moved between waterways."

    That being said Zebra mussels are here to stay, and the sooner your local ecosystem adapts to them the better. I grew up on the Mississippi River where they were prolific all through the 1990s. Then they exhausted their food source by cleaning up the waterways and became part of the food chain.

    Today I am lucky to see a Zebra mussel out on the main channel of the Miss.
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  5. #5

    Re: Zebra mussel question

    Here in MN, there are requirements when transporting any watercraft to prevent the spread of invasive species like Zebra mussels. One of the main precautions is to prevent carrying any water between bodies of water because, as mentioned, the Zebra mussel spreads mostly by means of the microscopic veliger larvae floating around dispersed in the water. Your PWC will be pulling in that water in its raw water cooling system and may get some water in the bilge, footwells etc. You should drain all bilges, ballast, live wells, and raw water cooling systems, and rinse and dry everything (including the trailer) after you pull out of that lake to prevent spreading the mussels to other lakes.

    By law, all drain plugs need to be removed/open when transporting any watercraft on a trailer on MN roads.

    For popular launches, on the weekends and holidays, at lakes not yet infected, they will have DNR officers checking incoming boats to make sure the bilges are dry, plugs are out, and asking you what body of water your boat was last in, and if it came from infected waters, asking you what you did to rinse and dry everything.

    The lake I live on, Prior Lake is already over-run, so its something I worry about only when I pull my boats out, but I hardly ever take my boats to other lakes, so not a big deal.

    The actual mussels are only going to grow on your boat if you leave it moored in the water for extended period of time (weeks). The most annoying thing is they tend to like the nooks and crannies of outboards and out-drives, sometimes clogging the water intake causing overheating. They are common on docks pilings, and boat lifts though. The shells have annoying sharp edges and you can cut your feet walking on clusters of them barefoot on the bottom, or on a swim ladder. I have cut up my hands when hauling out my dock for the winter.
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