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News stories tagged with "invasive-species"

Natural Selections: Pristine Lakes Revisited

Martha Foley talks with Dr. Curt Stager about his ongoing quest for a pristine Adirondack Lake -- one not affected by stocking programs, liming, logging, mining, etc. He thinks he has found one.  Go to full article

Lake Ontario ecosystem incorporating invasive zebra and quagga mussels

An update now on the invasive zebra and quagga mussels. Yesterday, we told you about the Sackets Harbor water treatment plant on the shore of Lake Ontario. It was nearly shut down last week after its intake pipe was so choked with mussels almost no water came through.

This morning, we hear from Dr Dawn Dittman. She's a researcher with the U.S. Geological Survey in Cortland, New York--and one of only a few people tracking the invasive mussels.

She says their numbers appear to be stabilizing. And she tells Jonathan Brown some popular sport fish--native to Lake Ontario--are starting to find zebra and quagga mussels quite tasty.  Go to full article
Coming to the Great Lakes soon?  (Photo: USFWS)
Coming to the Great Lakes soon? (Photo: USFWS)

Green groups want Obama to protect Great Lakes from Asian carp invasion

Environmental groups are blasting the US Corps of Engineers and urging President Obama to do far more to stop the spread of an invasive fish into the Great Lakes.

Scientists say the aggressive Asian carp -which can weigh up to 100 pounds--could wipe out natural fish stocks in Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River.

As Brian Mann reports, some lawmakers want new, permanent barriers that would prevent the fish from spreading.  Go to full article
Grass carp, one of four Asian species now in American waters.
Grass carp, one of four Asian species now in American waters.

Asian carp closer to Great Lakes?

Two New York lawmakers are demanding that U.S. officials shut two Chicago shipping locks to prevent an invasive fish from getting into the Great Lakes. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Congresswoman Louise Slaughter said Friday they are concerned about the recent discovery of a 20-pound Asian carp in Chicago's Lake Calumet, six miles from Lake Michigan. David Sommerstein has more.  Go to full article
Russell Martin checks an EAB trap last summer.
Russell Martin checks an EAB trap last summer.

Story 2.0: purple boxes part of losing battle to save ash trees

The purple boxes are up on ash trees again this summer. They're traps for the emerald ash borer, an invasive bug that has devastated ash stands in Michigan, Indiana and Ohio. In this state, the insect's been confined to western New York. Today we revisit the fight against the emerald ash borer. David Sommerstien has more.  Go to full article
Researchers crawl under the ledge of rock, wading upstream
Researchers crawl under the ledge of rock, wading upstream

Hale's Cave near Albany is ground zero of a deadly bat disease

The deadly bat disease known as white-nose syndrome was first identified in upstate New York three years ago. It continues to spread fast, with outbreaks now confirmed as far away as Ontario and Maryland. Researchers still don't know how to stop the fungus from reaching new caves. Here in the North Country, biologists now say the disease has already wiped out 95% of the largest bat colonies. Brian Mann traveled recently with a team of biologists returning to the cave near Albany where the first bats infected with white nose were discovered. He sent this audio postcard.  Go to full article

Great Lakes states push for federal action against Asian carp

The invasive Asian carp and its potentially devastating impact on the Great Lakes were the focus of a Congressional hearing in Washington yesterday.

The agressive fish has already infested the Mississippi River basin, and traces of its genetic material have been found in Lake Michigan for the first time.

Illinois temporarily closed navigational locks near Chicago to keep Asian Carp out of the Great Lakes. Representatives of the states surrounding the lakes are pressing the federal government to do more, faster. Martha Foley has more.  Go to full article

Jeff Alexander: invasive species "a slow-motion wildfire"

Invasive species - from zebra mussels and round gobies to the bloody red shrimp discovered three years ago - are one of the top threats to the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River. They've done billions of dollars in damage to the region's economy and environment. Most entered the Great Lakes through the ballast water of foreign ships on the St. Lawrence Seaway. Jeff Alexander has reported on invasive species for 25 years. He's also written a book about how most of those critters got here - hidden in the ballast of foreign ships on the St. Lawrence Seaway. The book is called Pandora's Locks: The Opening of the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway. Alexander is the keynote speaker at the Save the River Winter Weekend, Saturday, February 6 at the Clayton Opera House. Alexander told David Sommerstein he first training his reporting in invasive species in 1989, when zebra mussels shut down the municipal water system in Munroe, Michigan.  Go to full article
An infected bat at the Greeley Mine in Vermont (Photo: USFWS)
An infected bat at the Greeley Mine in Vermont (Photo: USFWS)

As bats return to winter caves, white-nose disease expected to spread fast

Last week, the US Fish & Wildlife Service issued preliminary guidelines urging roughly two-dozen states to prepare for the arrival of "white nose syndrome." That's the deadly fungal disease that has wiped out bat colonies across northern New York and Vermont. White nose was first discovered in a cave near Albany. Some of the hardest hit sites are in the Adirondacks and the Green Mountains, where researchers estimate that hundreds of thousands of animals have died. Brian Mann spoke yesterday with Jeremy Coleman, with the Fish and Wildlife Service. Coleman is the national coordinator for the hundreds of scientists working to develop a response to white nose syndrome.  Go to full article

Seaway picking up ground on invasive species

For decades now, invasive species have been one of the biggest threats to the health and economy of the St. Lawrence River and Great Lakes regions. More than 180 invaders have snuck into the watershed, most hidden in the ballast tanks of foreign Seaway ships. Things like zebra and quagga mussels, the round goby, and the sea lamprey crowd out native species, disturb the ecosystem, and have cost the region billions of dollars. But scientists and shippers are cautiously optimistic they're on the right track to keeping new invaders out of the St. Lawrence and Great Lakes. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

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