Zebra mussels infecting home aquariums in South Dakota

Published: Mar. 25, 2021 at 10:48 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - Zebra mussels are making their way into many homes without people knowing it.

The invasive species are getting into fish tanks by way of moss balls that are being imported from where they naturally grow in Ukraine.

A total of 27 states have already indicated positive tests for zebra mussels coming in on moss balls.

This invasive species has also been found in several pet stores in South Dakota.

“We would highly encourage everyone to remove those moss balls from their aquarium and freeze them. And if they can drain the water from their aquarium. We would advise you to drain that out in your landscape or your grass,” said South Dakota invasive species coordinator Tanner Davis.

People are advised not to pour infected fish tank water in sinks or down drains as that will only further the spread of this invasive species.

Some pet stores believe that moss balls could end up being eliminated from pet shops completely moving forward.

“My guess is that moving forward there will probably be some banning of some of that stuff there are some plants that are still banned moving through in this process that even now that you can’t get for fish anymore,” said Mini-Critters general manager Ryan Oaks.

Zebra mussels are one of the most dangerous invasive species currently in the state of South Dakota.

They can make water smell like garbage, clog water pipes, and kill native species.

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