What habitat do zebra mussels live in?

What habitat do zebra mussels live in?

Zebra mussels live in still or slow-moving freshwater, and attach themselves to any hard surface under water, natural or man-made, including rocks, submerged wood, boat hulls, buoys, docks, and water intake pipes.

Where are zebra mussels found?

Zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) are small, freshwater, bivalve shellfish that were likely brought to the U.S. as stowaways in the ballast water of ships. They are native to the Caspian and Black Seas south of Russia and Ukraine, and have since become widespread in both Europe and the U.S.

Do zebra mussels live in rivers?

Native to the Caspian Sea region of Asia, zebra mussels reached the Great Lakes in the mid-1980s in the ballast water of a ship. Since their arrival, zebra mussels have spread rapidly throughout the Great Lakes and into several major river systems of the eastern United States, including the Ohio.

Where is the zebra mussels original habitat and where is the zebra mussels current habitat as an invasive species?

The zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) is a small freshwater mussel. The species was originally native to the lakes of southern Russia and Ukraine, but has been accidentally introduced to numerous other areas and has become an invasive species in many countries worldwide.

What’s bad about zebra mussels?

One of the more well-known problems with zebra mussels is the way they rapidly coat water intake pipes, which is a problem for drinking water treatment plants, power plants and any other industry that’s pulling water out of the lakes through a pipe.

Can zebra mussels be stopped?

What you can do to stop the spread of the invasive zebra mussel: Inspect boat, trailer, and other recreational equipment that have been in contact with water. Remove all mud, plants, or animals. Drain all bilge water, live wells, bait buckets, and all other water from your boat, engine and equipment.

Can you get rid of zebra mussels?

Biologists who have studied zebra mussels recommend using high-pressure hot water to remove and kill zebra mussels that are attached to your boat hull (use water >104 degrees F if possible). It is okay to use high-pressure cold water if hot water is not available.

What are zebra mussels and why should we care about them?

What are zebra mussels and why should we care about them? The zebra mussel is an invasive species and is very adaptable to new environments. It has the potential to inhabit most of the fresh waters of the U.S. and may impact a variety of native aquatic species and eventually entire ecosystems. They also have had a large economic impact already.

How do zebra mussels damage the environment?

Damaging Ecosystems. Quagga and zebra mussels damage the ecosystems they invade. They feed by filtering water and removing large amounts of food, effectively starving native species in infested rivers and lakes. The waste they produce accumulates and degrades the environment, using up oxygen, making the water acidic and producing toxic byproducts.

What impact do zebra mussels have on the ecosystem?

Ecosystem connections: Zebra mussels have a tremendous negative impact on aquatic ecosystems, changing the quality of the water, outcompeting native freshwater mussels, and reducing the plankton available that form the basis for fish life.

What animal use the zebra mussel as a food source?

Species known to feed significantly on zebra mussels include greater scaups, lesser scaups, pochards, tufted ducks, buffleheads, goldeneyes, common coots oldsquaws, herring gulls, and white-winged scoters. Blue crabs (Callinectes sapidus) consumed many zebra mussels during a study in the Hudson River.