Invasive quagga and zebra mussels have been kept out of B.C. waterways for another year. (CSISS/Facebook)

Invasive quagga and zebra mussels have been kept out of B.C. waterways for another year. (CSISS/Facebook)

2020 tests show B.C. remains invasive mussel free

Columbia Shuswap Invasive Species Society says efforts to keep the mussels away worked

B.C. remains invasive mussel free.

More than 900 samples were collected from lakes and rivers around the province in 2020, and no trace of the potentially destructive zebra and quagga mussels were found in any of them.

Among the environmental groups celebrating the news is the Columbia Shuswap Invasive Species Society (CSISS) whose monitoring area is important in efforts to keep the mussels out of B.C. because it straddles the Trans-Canada Highway. Keeping an eye on the highways is an important part of keeping the invasive mussels out of B.C. waterways because they have been known to hitch a ride on boats being towed from elsewhere.

There are not established zebra mussel populations in Alberta or Saskatchewan, but the risk of mussels spreading from elsewhere hidden in the hulls and bilges of boats on trailers is being considered by all three western provinces.

Read More: B.C. sees 469 new COVID-19 cases, six deaths Wednesday

Read More: 12% of COVID-19 rule breakers in B.C. have paid their fines

Six watercraft inspection stations staffed by conservation officers are set up on B.C.’s borders with Alberta and the United States. According to CSISS, 29,900 watercraft were inspected in B.C. in 2020. Sixteen of those boats were found to have adult invasive mussels aboard. Seven of the boats were bound for the Okanagan and two were on their way to the Thompson region.

Even though no trace of the mussels has been found in B.C. boat users are asked to clean, drain and dry their boats before moving them between bodies of water.

The mussels are not native to North America but exist in large numbers in Eastern Canada and the United States. According to the B.C. government, the mussels pose a potential threat to aquatic ecosystems, salmon populations and infrastructure such as hydroelectric dams. Their shells can also injure swimmers along shorelines, damage boat propellers and potentially harm the quality of drinking water.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Vernon Search and Rescue, with help from the Air Rescue One helicopter out of Wildcat Helicopters in Kelowna, and Central Okanagan Search and Rescue, were able to transport an injured snowmobiler to Vernon Regional Airport, where he was loaded into an ambulance and taken to Vernon Jubilee Hospital with a serious, painful back injury. (Facebook photo)
Okanagan helicopter rescue teams called to retrieve injured sledder at Greystokes

Vernon and Central Okanagan Search and Rescue help load injured man into waiting helicopter

Chase RCMP held two men involved in drunken disturbances overnight in their detachment’s cells on Feb. 6. (File Photo)
Chase RCMP hold two men involved in drunken disturbances overnight

The two separate incidents took place less than an hour apart.

The District of Sicamous is trying to take over management of the Sicamous and District Recreation Centre . (File Photo)
District of Sicamous seeks management contract for hockey arena

The arena has been managed by a non-profit society since it was built in the early 1980s.

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
Chase RCMP arrest intoxicated man running into highway traffic

The man was wanted on several warrents in Alberta; was held overnight but released

A health worker holds a vial of AstraZeneca vaccine to be administered to members of the police at a COVID-19 vaccination center in Mainz, Germany, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021. The federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate, start with the vaccination of police officers in internal police vaccination centers. (Andreas Arnold/dpa via AP)
B.C. officials to unveil new details of COVID vaccination plan Monday

Seniors and health-care workers who haven’t gotten their shot are next on the list

An investigation is underway after a man was shot and killed by Tofino RCMP in Opitsaht. (Black Press Media file photo)
Man shot and killed by RCMP near Tofino, police watchdog investigating

Investigation underway by Independent Investigations Office of British Columbia.

B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver on Tuesday December 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s compromise on in-person worship at three churches called ‘absolutely unacceptable’

Would allow outdoor services of 25 or less by Langley, Abbotsford and Chilliwack churches

Wills Hodgkinson, 10, and his mom Neeley Brimer get ready to battle round three of cancer. The community of Penticton has his back. (Submitted)
Community raises $21K to help Penticton boy battle third round of cancer

Okanoggin Barbers held the fundraiser on Saturday for 10-year-old Wills Hodgkinson

Baldy Mountain Resort was shut down on Saturday after a fatal workplace accident. (Baldy Mountain picture)
UPDATE: 70-year-old man killed in workplace accident at Baldy Mountain

The mountain closed on Saturday but has partially re-opened today (Sunday)

Jasmine and Gwen Donaldson are part of the CAT team working to reduce stigma for marginalized groups in Campbell River. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror
Jasmine’s story: Stigma can be the hardest hurdle for those overcoming addiction

Recovering B.C. addict says welcome, connection and community key for rebuilding after drug habit

Kamloops Fire Rescue battled a landfill fire which belched toxic smoke into the air on Feb. 27. (City of Kamloops Photo)
Fire at Kamloops landfill sends thick black smoke into the air

Firefighters made slow progress on the fire throughout the morning.

A Vancouver restaurant owner was found guilty of violating B.C.’s Human Rights Code by discriminating against customers on the basis of their race. (Pixabay)
Vancouver restaurant owner ordered to pay $4,000 to customers after racist remark

Referring to patrons as ‘you Arabs’ constitutes discrimination under B.C.’s Human Rights Code, ruling deems

Approximate location of the vehicle incident. (Google Maps)
Vehicle incident blocking Coquihalla traffic in both directions

Both directions of traffic stopped due to vehicle incident

Most Read