While invasive zebra and quagga mussels (ZQM) have not been found in British Columbia to date, they remain a major threat to BC waters. In other parts of North America, these mussels have caused considerable damage to hydropower stations, and municipal water supplies. The mussels can also have impacts on biodiversity, water quality, recreation, fisheries and species at risk.
The zebra and quagga mussel monitoring program has run without interruption, despite the global pandemic. Staff at the Central Kootenay Invasive Species Society kicked off sampling season in the spring and as of October 1 have collected 235 plankton samples for mussel veliger detection. As of August 26, all samples from the nine local waterbodies have been negative for presence of invasive mussels!
In addition to monitoring, CKISS facilitates education and outreach activities related to mitigating the impacts of aquatic invasive species in the Central Kootenay. In 2020, CKISS partnered with the Regional District of Central Kootenay and the Creston Valley Wildlife Management Centre to install six new educational signs at water based recreation sites to remind users of the importance of the Clean, Drain, Dry program.
Central Kootenay Invasive Species Society