Quagga mussels as invasive species in the Great Lakes

February 24, 2021

 

There is an order to nature that can produce negative side-effects when tampered with. Nowhere is this more apparent than with the phenomena of “invasive species”.

 

Mussels

 

Recently, there has been increasing research on Quagga mussels in the Great Lakes. Originating from the Ponto-Caspian region of Eurasia, Quagga mussels first appeared in the Great Lakes in the late 1980s. In the ensuing decades, the population of Quagga mussels has increased drastically in all the Great Lakes except Lake Superior. Increasing number of Quagga mussels has been correlated with increasingly unstable phosphorus production in the Great Lakes, which could pose environmental risks.

To learn more about this emerging area of research, please check out the links below:

News item on Quagga mussels from the National Science Foundation (Invasive mussels now control a key nutrient in the American Great Lakes | NSF - National Science Foundation

Article on Quagga mussels published in PNAS (Benthic invaders control the phosphorus cycle in the world’s largest freshwater ecosystem | PNAS)