Zebra mussel colonziation of diatom covered substrate.
AbstractInvasive species are a leading cause in loss of biodiversity and ecosystem destruction. Zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) invaded Great Lakes waters in 1986 and began rapidly spreading throughout U.S. waterways. Zebra mussels were discovered in Douglas Lake, MI in 2002, and the population exploded in summer 2005. Although zebra mussel densities were high in most postions of the lake, densities were observed to be low on the substrate off of Grapevine Point. We hypothesized that the diatom covering found on rocks off of Grapevine Point was inhibiting colonization by zebra mussels. To test our hypothesis ten sites were established with varying treatments of rocks varying from complete diatom covering to diatom covering completely removed. These results lead us to conclude the diatom covering on rocks is inhibiting zebra mussel colonization. The diatom covering is likely too soft a substrate for high levels of zebra mussel colonization.
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