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Environmental Services - What can I do to help?


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Environmental Services

Dean Messer, Chief

3500 Industrial Blvd.
West Sacramento, CA 95691
(916) 376-9699

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 942836
Sacramento, CA 94236-0001



What can I do to help?

What You Can Do to Help:

  • Inform others about how to prevent the spread of zebra and quagga mussels.
  • Look for zebra and quagga mussels in your lake or reservoir by inspecting objects left in the water for long periods of time (for example, boats, logs, aquatic vegetation, boat docks/ramps, and buoys).

  • Clean and inspect your boat regularly and inform others to do the same.

  • Inspect out-of-state boats and trailers for the presence of zebra and quagga mussels.

Help Stop the Spread:

Zebra and quagga mussels cause devastating impacts on municipal water systems, water recreation opportunities and businesses, and fisheries. Currently, they are widespread in eastern and midwestern states, and are rapidly spreading in Southern California. Zebra mussels have been found as far north as San Benito County. We need your help to stop these mussels from spreading to uninfested lakes, rivers and streams in California.

Zebra and quagga mussels are transported from one waterbody to another in vessels. Microscopic larval mussels can “hitchhike” in water remaining in livewells, bilge tanks, engine cooling systems, and bait buckets. Juvenile and adult mussels can hitchhike attached to boat hulls, engine drive units, and boat trailers. Adult zebra and quagga mussels can survive for several days out of the water if in a moist, shaded area, and for over a week in wet areas such as bilges and livewells.

How to Inspect and Clean Boats and Trailers:

Learn how to identify zebra and quagga mussels.

Remove all aquatic plants and animals from boat, motor, trailer, and equipment.

Drain water from livewells, bilge, and motor.

Dispose of unwanted live minnows and worms in the trash.

Rinse boat and equipment with high pressure or hot water, especially if moored for more than a day, OR

Dry everything for at least 5 days.

Never launch watercraft with a suspected infestation.

Report sightings on watercraft or in lakes and rivers.


Where to Look for Zebra and Quagga Mussels:

boat locations to find zebra mussels

click for larger image

Early detection is key
to preventing and mitigating
impacts of zebra and quagga mussels