Zebra mussels confirmed in South Long Lake in Crow Wing County

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has confirmed a report of zebra mussels in South Long Lake, near Brainerd in Crow Wing County. Five hundred feet of the Nokasippi River upstream and downstream of South Long Lake will also be listed for zebra mussels.

A lake property owner found adult zebra mussels while fishing on the east side of South Long Lake. DNR staff confirmed a broad distribution of zebra mussels in the lake. They found no zebra mussels upstream or downstream of the lake and will continue to monitor waters connected to the lake.

Whether or not a lake is listed for any invasive species, Minnesota law requires boaters and anglers to:

Clean watercraft and trailers of aquatic plants and prohibited invasive species.
Drain all water by removing drain plugs and keeping them out during transport.
Dispose of unwanted bait in the trash.

Some invasive species are small and difficult to see at the public water access. To remove or kill them, take one or more of the following precautions before moving to another waterbody:

Spray with high-pressure water.
Rinse with very hot water (120 degrees for at least two minutes or 140 degrees for at least 10 seconds).
Dry for at least five days.

Zebra mussels can compete with native species for food and habitat, cut the feet of swimmers, reduce the performance of boat motors, and cause expensive damage to water intake pipes.

People should contact an area DNR aquatic invasive species specialist if they think they have found zebra mussels or any other invasive species that has not already been confirmed in a particular waterbody.