Monitoring Finds Quagga Mussel Larvae in Jumbo and Tarryall Reservoirs of Colorado

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Quagga MusselA State initiative to gather more information on the presence of aquatic invasive species in Colorado confirmed the presence of quagga mussel larvae in Jumbo Reservoir in Logan County, and Tarryall Reservoir in Park County.

Veligers, the larval stage of quagga mussels, were initially identified by a microscopic analysis of water samples.  An independent lab confirmed the presence of quagga mussel DNA in the samples.

Earlier this summer, the Colorado Division of Wildlife (DOW) implemented mandatory boat inspections at Tarryall and continues to inspect all boats entering and exiting the reservoir.  The DOW and the Julesburg Irrigation Company will be discussing an appropriate response for Jumbo Reservoir.

Public awareness and participation is the best weapon in the containment of invasive species.  Invasive mussels endanger water quality and natural resources.  Boaters are reminded to take the simple precaution of making sure that they Clean, Drain, and Dry their boat when they leave the lake.  All boaters should remember to follow these steps to ensure they are not spreading the mussels to clean waters:

Quagga mussel larvaeDRAIN the water from the vessel, live well and the  lower unit of the engine.

CLEAN the hull of the vessel.

DRY the vessel, fishing gear and other equipment.

INSPECT all exposed surfaces.

REMOVE all plant and animal material.

“Boaters need to remain extremely vigilant in following the ‘Clean, Drain and Dry’ protocol,” said Elizabeth Brown, DOW Invasive Species Coordinator.  “We need the help of boaters to prevent the spread of the mussels in Colorado.  There are hundreds of uninfested lakes and we want to keep them that way.”

Jumbo Reservoir Boating Restrictions:

Under existing regulations, recreational boating on Jumbo Reservoir is prohibited October 1st through the last day of regular goose season on February 15th.  Shoreline waterfowl hunters may use hand-propelled craft to set and pick up decoys, and to retrieve downed waterfowl.  Waterfowl hunting from motorized vessels is allowed by reservation only and only hunters with reservations are exempt from the October 1 boat closure. Reservations may be made by calling 1-800-846-9453.  

Tarryall Reservoir Restrictions and Inspection Procedures:

Trailered boats are allowed on the lake from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday through Monday. No night boating is allowed. Before launching, trailered boats must be inspected at the north ramp off Park County Road 77.  Hand-launched craft such as float tubes, canoes and non-motorized rowboats are permitted at all times.