Bad news for the Iowa Great Lakes: The zebra mussel, an invasive species that clogs and damages structures such as water intake and outflow pipes and competes with native mussels and small fish, has been found in East Okoboji Lake. The creatures were attached to docks and boat hoists removed from the water. The mussel is difficult and costly to eradicate.
Three juvenile mussels were reported in December, following an adult discovered in Upper Gar Lake in September. A spokesman from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources said it’s too early to know whether the pests, which are about the size of a fingernail and have black-striped shells, are reproducing in the lakes, a popular vacation spot for many Midlanders.