RWO 103: Assessing risk for westward expansion of zebra mussels to guide EDRR strategies
May 2021 - September 2023
- U.S. Geological Survey
Zebra mussels are representative of nonindigenous aquatic species (NAS) with devastating economic, recreational, and environmental impacts that are already under watch as a problematic species across the U.S. and in Texas. Targeting dispersal pathways is likely the most efficient means of controlling their spread further west. Thus, there is a need for risk assessment to guide monitoring efforts to detect and report new sightings of zebra mussels and other NAS. Such tools meet the annual guidance and mission of the ANS Task Force and the National Early Detection and Rapid Response (EDRR) framework within DOI. This project is a collaboration of researchers across multiple agencies including USGS Wetland and Aquatic Research Center, USGS Western Fisheries Research Center, and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Providing data and decision support tools on invasion risk facilitates early detection and mitigation strategies that may ultimately lower the cost associated with zebra mussel impacts.