Invasive mussel larvae found in Green Mountain Reservoir, prompting decontamination procedures for boats
August 29, 2017
Colorado Parks and Wildlife has found invasive quagga mussel larvae in Green Mountain Reservoir in Summit County, prompting aggressive decontamination policies to prevent the growth and spread of the invasive species.
The presence of larvae can lead to an infestation that would threaten hydroelectric power generation, water quality and recreation.
Specialists with the Bureau of Reclamation found the larvae — known as veligers — through a microscopic examination and DNA testing earlier this month. A team of scuba scientists — part of a program with the Denver Aquarium — surveyed the reservoir last week and did not find any of the invasive mussels in the reservoir between Silverthorne and Kremmling.
All boats heading into Green Mountain Reservoir will get the same inspection for invasive mussels as every other body of water in the state but now, after the discovery of veligers, all boats leaving the reservoir will be inspected. Any boat leaving Green Mountain for another body of water will require decontamination. If after three years of biweekly tests Green Mountain Reservoir tests show no more veliger, the reservoir will be delisted.