Great Lakes Now is hosting a live chat about invasive species with the Belle Isle Conservancy on Friday, Aug. 7. Check out the event page here for more details.
Since the 1800s, at least 25 non-native fish species – like the sea lamprey, zebra mussel or round goby – have entered the Great Lakes, changing the Great Lakes ecosystem in a variety of ways.
Once these creatures have a foothold in the lakes, a lack of natural predator often means a wild spread of the creature that is nearly impossible to contain.
Zebra and quagga mussels were introduced to the Great Lakes in the late 1980s and made trouble by clearing the waters for toxic algae and clogging up water intake pipes.
Watch this Great Lakes Now segment to see one of the ways people are dealing with the problem:
Catch this Great Lakes Now segment on the relationship between the round goby and zebra mussels:
While carp and sea lamprey are well known, there are other invasive species that aren’t as famous but still pose a big problem.
Each Great Lakes state and province have made efforts toward preventing the spread of invasive species, through campaigns, removal programs and research efforts.
Take this Great Lakes Now quiz to learn a bit about six of the more common Great Lakes invasive species and which one you might most be like:
Also, go behind the scenes with the Belle Isle Conservancy in Great Lakes Now’s last live chat with them: