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Invasive quagga mussels found on boat at Ashland inspection station

January 8, 2024

SALEM, Ore. – ODFW staff at the Ashland Boat Inspection Station found quagga mussels on a pontoon boat that was being transported from Lake Mead, Nev., into Oregon on Jan. 4.

This was the first instance in 2024 where crews have found quagga mussels. The watercraft was decontaminated at the inspection station.

"Quagga mussels can cause serious damage to Oregon's lakes, streams, irrigation and water delivery systems," said Rick Boatner, ODFW Invasive Species Coordinator. "We want watercraft owners to be responsible and have their vessel inspected when entering Oregon."

ODFW reminds the public that all vehicles towing or carrying watercraft into Oregon must stop at any watercraft inspection station that is open to inspect for aquatic invasive species.

Watercraft owners should be aware of where inspections stations are located around Oregon. Stations are open if large orange, "Boat Inspection Ahead," signs are posted, followed by "Inspection Required for All Watercraft."

Visit MyODFW.com for more information about the Aquatic Invasive Species Prevention Program and Waterway Access permits: https://myodfw.com/articles/waterway-access-and-aquatic-invasive-species-permits.

ODFW has not detected the presence of quagga mussels in Oregon's waterways but in 2023 crews decontaminated 9 watercrafts for quagga or zebra mussels and 327 watercrafts for other types of aquatic biofouling such as Eurasian Watermilfoil.

Since the start of the Watercraft Inspection Stations program in 2010, ODFW has inspected 209,620 watercraft and intercepted and decontaminated 168 watercrafts with quagga or zebra mussels and 3,246 watercrafts with other types of aquatic biofouling.

Inspection station locations and operating hours:

Ashland: I-5 at the Ashland Port of Entry. Open daily, year-round, during daylight hours.

Ontario: I-84 at the Ontario Rest Area. Open daily, year-round, during daylight hours.

Seasonal Inspection station located in Brookings, Klamath Falls, Lakeview, and Umatilla will be opening the first week of May.

If you find quagga mussels on a vessel, please report them to the Oregon Invasive Species hotline by calling 1-866-INVADER or visiting https://oregoninvasiveshotline.org.

Photo of pontoon boat that was decontaminated at the Ashland Boat Inspection Station, January 2024: https://www.dfw.state.or.us/news/images/2024/010824_Marked%20out%20numbers.jpg

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Contact: Rick Boatner, (503) 947-6308, rick.j.boatner@odfw.oregon.gov
   
 
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