Beware! The New Zealand Mudsnail Walks Among Us!

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Photo credit: Robyn Draheim, Portland State University.

mudsnailThe New Zealand mudsnail has been found in our irreplaceable Yuba River watershed. This aquatic invasive species is a tiny snail that inhabits freshwater bodies, but also survives on rock or gravel surfaces, aquatic vegetation, or woody debris. New Zealand mudsnails are asexual and highly adaptable to diverse climates. They have the ability to reproduce at an incredible pace. Did you know that a single female mudsnail can result in a colony of 40 million snails in one year? They can tolerate a broad range of aquatic conditions, making them very difficult to control or eradicate.

It is imperative we all know the steps to minimize the spread of New Zealand mudsnail. The snails can be transported by mud on waders, decoy weights, boats and trailers, or other clothing and equipment that they may come in contact with.

Please note and share the following points to reduce the snail spreading.Mudsnailpdf

  • CHECK all recreational gear and clothing that has come in contact with water for any visible signs of sand, mud, or plant fragments which may indicate a tiny hitchhiker.
  • CLEAN all gear before leaving a site by scrubbing with a brush and rinsing with water.
  • DRAIN all of the water from your boat (including the bilge, live well, motor), trailer, tackle and gear before leaving the area.
  • DISINFECT your gear (especially waders and boots) before traveling to a different water body. Freeze your gear for a minimum of 6 hours (< 26°F), soak gear in a hot water bath for 5 minutes (≥ 120°F) (not recommended for Gortex), or soak gear in undiluted Formula 409 for at least 10 minutes.*
  • DRY your gear completely (at least 48 hours) after each use.
  • NEVER transport live fish or any other aquatic plant or animal from one water body to another – it is illegal!
  • INFORM others!
    The Yuba River watershed depends on best practices and cleaning of equipment to reduce the spread of these and other nuisance invasive species.

*Source: New Zealand Mudsnail, Application of Household Disinfectants to Control New Zealand Mudsnails

SYRCL River Monitors are working hard to practice what we preach! We will be implementing new protocol for our river monitoring practices to help keep the snail from spreading. If you find New Zealand mudsnails or any other potential invasive species contact the Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force at 1‐877‐STOP‐ANS.

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