Component 5
Rapid Response

Objective: Eradicate or contain zebra mussels if detected.

A cooperative rapid response effort among government agencies and the private sector is necessary if zebra mussels are to be contained once they are detected. Zebra mussel sightings must be confirmed by the responsible government agencies or academic institutions. A State agency and specific contact should be designated for receiving and confirming reports and coordinating response activities.

Once zebra mussel infestations have been identified, the responsible State agency should determine the next most likely site of infestation. By reviewing watershed maps, the responsible agency can define how many sites could be infected by flow from the initial site. The agency can also determine the chance of recreationalists transferring zebra mussels from infected to noninfected areas. (Zebra Mussel Protocol).

A national containment and control plan will be developed through a workshop to identify techniques for controlling and eradicating zebra mussels. This program will include outreach to educate the public about where zebra mussels have been sited and how their transfer from infested sites can be prevented. Individuals making up a response team will be trained to implement certain aspects of the containment and control plan if zebra mussel infestations would be discovered in 100th meridian jurisdictions and west. Decisions will need to be made as to how to handle zebra mussel containment and control if they are found in large bodies of water in thewest. If found in irrigation canals, physical removal or dessication may be used. Biological controls such as freshwater drum and redear sunfish may be used to prey on zebra mussels (Zebra Mussel Protocol).


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