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30 lakes confirmed zebra mussel free

Crow Wing County Land Services has released test results confirming 30 area lakes remain free from zebra mussels. Partnering with local lake associations to collect water samples, testing was conducted on many lakes within the county for veligers...

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Crow Wing County Land Services has released test results confirming 30 area lakes remain free from zebra mussels.

Partnering with local lake associations to collect water samples, testing was conducted on many lakes within the county for veligers, larval-state zebra mussels, an aquatic invasive species (AIS). No veligers were detected in any lake tested.

"These results show boaters are all doing their part to prevent the spread of zebra mussels," Mark Liedl, land services director, said in a news release. "Boaters are meeting the challenge and committing to doing the right thing to limit the spread of AIS in county waters."

Veliger testing is the best method of early detection for the possible presence of zebra mussels in a body of water. Samples were collected during late June through August, when the concentration of veligers in the water column is the highest. The presence of veligers was not detected in any lake sampled, including popular lakes such as Bay, Hubert, Kimball, Horseshoe, Edward, Clearwater, Crooked/Portage, Upper and Lower South Long, Upper and Lower Mission, Crow Wing, Platte, Rabbit and East/West Fox. Land services plans to complete testing on additional lakes before the end of the summer.

Information about county AIS prevention efforts, including a complete list of lakes tested, interactive maps to search for the status of area lakes, and a map showing the location of the county's AIS decontamination station in Crosslake, can be found at www.crowwing.us , and searching for "AIS."

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Draining all water and cleaning all visible weeds and zebra mussels from watercraft before leaving a lake and transporting to another are the most important steps boaters can take to prevent the spread of AIS. Twenty-one days of drying time is needed when purchasing used docks, lifts or swim rafts before locating them in a different water body.

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