Aquatic Invasive Species
With the arrival of zebra mussels in the Great Lakes more than a decade ago, local, national, and international attention have focused on the establishment of non-native, invasive or nuisance species in freshwater and marine habitats. Aquatic plants like water chestnut, hydrilla, and Eurasian water milfoil choke local lakes, adversely affecting recreational activities, and depressing lakefront property values. The Asian shore crab, Hemigrapsus sanguineus (image, left)has become the dominant intertidal crustacean in the Northeast, displacing both native and non-native crab species; its omnivorous diet includes juvenile mussels, other crabs, and seaweed. Marine tunicates foul boat lines, dock pilings, and are causing problems for some shellfish industries. The pathways for species from their native habitats to new ones are many, including ballast water, recreational boats and bait buckets, live seafood shipments, discharges of unwanted aquarium organisms, and other intentional as well as inadvertent means. It is a global problem costing enormous ecological and economic problems.
Sen. Richard Blumenthal announced on June 3 that he is leading an effort to secure $100 million over four years in federal funding for a multistate effort to control hydrilla in the Connecticut River watershed.[Read More]
In this video, Lindsey Kollmer, CT Sea Grant and UConn Extension summer intern, interviews Jim Straub, member of the Northeast Aquatic Nuisance Species Panel, about water chestnut and hydrilla management in Massachusetts.[Read More]
The basics of European water chestnut: What is it? Why is it bad? How can you help?[Read More]