News release: Zebra mussels confirmed in Moon Lake in Douglas County

August 31, 2023

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has confirmed the presence of zebra mussels in Moon Lake, near Brandon in Douglas County.

Minnesota DNR Parks and Trails Division staff found adult and juvenile zebra mussels on a settlement sampler on the dock at the Moon Lake public water access. Settlement samplers are solid surfaces placed in the water that people can regularly check for attached zebra mussels to aid in detection. A Minnesota DNR invasive species specialist confirmed 34 zebra mussels on the sampler and found additional zebra mussels on nearby objects in the water.

Whether or not a lake has any invasive species, Minnesota law requires people to:

  • Clean watercraft, trailers and equipment to remove aquatic plants and prohibited invasive species.
  • Drain all water and leave drain plugs out during transport.
  • Dispose of unwanted bait in the trash.
  • Never release bait, plants or aquarium pets into Minnesota waters.
  • Dry docks, lifts and rafts for 21 days before moving them from one water body to another.

These additional steps reduce the risk of spreading aquatic invasive species:

  • Decontaminate watercraft and equipment – find free stations on the courtesy decontamination page of the DNR website.
  • Spray with high-pressure water or rinse with very hot water (120 degrees for at least two minutes or 140 degrees for at least 10 seconds).
  • Dry watercraft and equipment for at least five days before using in another water body.

People should contact a Minnesota DNR aquatic invasive species specialist if they think they have found zebra mussels or any other invasive species that was not already known to be in the water body.

More information is available on the aquatic invasive species page of the DNR website.

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