For many Kansas City area triathletes, Clinton Lake in Lawrence, Kansas, has served as the mecca for olympic and half ironman distance triathlons. The Kansas Triathlon, Ironman 70.3 Kansas Triathlon and the new Lawrence Triathlon all call Clinton Lake home.
Recently, an infestation of zebra mussels, an invasive species of mollusk known to clog water intake pipes and outboard motors, has been confirmed in Clinton Lake according to the Lawrence Journal World. An adult population of zebra mussels was discovered weeks ago during a routine fish sampling and a subsequent survey indicated the population was widespread.
Twenty-two lakes in Kansas have zebra mussels. Other reservoirs in northeast Kansas with infestations are Milford, Perry, John Redmond, and Melvern.
Now that the sharp-shelled zebra mussels have been confirmed in Clinton, notices will be posted warning people to use caution. People should protect their feet when walking on underwater or shoreline rocks, and they should be careful when grabbing objects underwater.
The mollusks are bean-sized with stripes, and can produce huge populations in a short period of time.
They attach to pipes, boat hulls, propellers, rocks, piers and other structures. Moving water in boats and bait buckets are the most likely ways the zebra mussels are transferred to uninfested lakes.
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