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Old 08-11-2011
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Getting Tough on Invasive Species

This news article says that DNR officers in Minnesota now enforce washing your boat down after leaving inland lakes as well as denying launch if inspections find growth on hulls.

I guess it's too late for zebra mussels and any invasive species that have already spread to other bodies of water, but it might work for any new species that are discovered.
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Old 08-11-2011
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Sounds good to me. In Oz there are any number of introduced marine species that have arrived here courtesy of incoming shipping. Control of the pumping of ballast water from ships in port and hull growth are the main perpetrators.
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Old 08-11-2011
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First, zebra mussels have only spread to some lakes in MN. And, second, there are many, many, invasive species other than zebra mussels. That being said, it's a shame various state and federal agencies are only now being given the authority to help stop (or at least slow) the spread of such species.
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Old 08-11-2011
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The zebras shoed up in the GL's via water ballast on BIG boats, NOW< the feds have told shippers they must dump WB x miles off shore when they come from area's with zebra's or equal, reload with water locally. Not that a dumping and reload might not bring some of the other water in........but that is another story.

Lk Washington where I grew up at, has a MAJOR millfoil problem now. I remember as a teen off a neighbors dock there were a few stalks here and there. Had not gone sailing or equal off that dock in about 15 yrs, was there a week or so ago, what a mess. could not see the blinking bottom from about 5' to 15' of depth it was SOOO thick with the millfoil.

I have to deal with this in my landscape biz too, with invasive stuff, be it plants, bugs, aracnoids, mollusks etc getting shipped into our state from elsewhere. We have a snail issue that came up from the southern states in plant pots that was not here 20-30 yrs ago. Craneflys that made there way here via canada.........

Not to mention the carp in the mississipi that are trying to get in to LK Michigan from a farm that was flooded. I recall seeing a tv article, that some 20-25' boa constrictors are now living in the marshes of Florida, and upon occasion have gotten dogs cats etc, including a child recently. Probably take over the gators domain! I believe there are some other poisonous snakes that have gotton loose when homes etc were destroyed by the Hurricanes, and these creatures got loose!

we humans, have not been good to this planet at times........

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Old 08-12-2011
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On the other hand, taking a longer term view humans are an "invasive species" to areas other than Africa are we not?

Stasis is not normal -- migration and adaptation are. Species thrive in areas that will support them and will suffer in areas that don't. It's been going on since life began. Mother Nature does a pretty good job at this all on her own.

The fact that we have assisted in the changing nature of local flora and fauna is nothing new.

European explorers and settlers to the New World brought with them new plant species and took others back to Europe. They also brought diseases to the Americas to which the local indiginous population had no natural defenses, leading to massive epidemics that killed off exceptionally large numbers of those locals decimating ancient cultures.

Much of the current debate centers on "harmful" invasive species, and ignores the "beneficial" ones. Those terms are largely based on how they impact humans, which simply continues to keep the debate centered on human needs.

What's "good" and what's "bad?" It all depends on how you are effected by the new interloper.

Think about it -- like zebra mussels it certain that oysters at some point were new arrivals to coastal waters. Those mullosks are quite tasty, and serve a purpose in the human food chain. Alas the poor zebra mussel, it does not. Ergo zebra mussels are bad; oysters are good.

It's all about perpesctive.

And oh, yeah -- sometimes we do some really stupid things that accelerate the process.

Last edited by PorFin; 08-12-2011 at 01:59 PM.
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Old 08-12-2011
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Yes my fair state has been trying to slow down/stop the spread of the nasty things for a while. Eurasion Milfoil has also been a problem with it spreading dang near everywhere. Of course we are the land of 10,000 lakes so this is a bit of an issue here. OK, more like 11,842 lakes... but that doesn't have a nice ring to it.

Now we are starting to have issues with the wonderful flying carp.... Coming up the St. Croix river...

I have thought about the whole natural progression thing myself at times. Guess you could call us humans an oyster predator though, zebra muscles and the carp don't seem to have one to keep them in check. Which, also is the natural way of things.
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Old 08-12-2011
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How come invasive species are never tasty?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by epaolino View Post
How come invasive species are never tasty?
I heard a segment on NPR where some Louisiana chefs did cook the carp as an experiment and found that they are quite good, a nice whitefish, with not a strong fishy taste to it. Maybe it'll catch on. I think at least one Chesapeake chef also cooked one and said that it was good eating.

I'm willing to try it and I'm not an adventurous eater.
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Old 08-12-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by epaolino View Post
How come invasive species are never tasty?
Many are. That's part of the problem. In western states, Northern Pike is a huge threat to native trout habitat; and Rainbow Trout have basically been introduced all over the world, often to the detriment of native species. In terrestrial habitats, feral pigs, horses, et cetera (even honey bees) have impacts on not only a localized scale, but on the scale of ecological landscapes. In general, many species get introduced when people bring along species with which they are familiar. Islands are particularly susceptible to these sorts of intentional introductions; just look the problems they are having in Hawaii.

Often, fish and wildlife management decisions are made based on maximizing introduced populations of game species (e.g., Striped Bass, Wild Boar, and White-tailed Deer in California), rather than maintaining healthy native populations.
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Old 08-12-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by epaolino View Post
How come invasive species are never tasty?
Hahaha......... you owe me a keyboard, .

In the 1800, that is exactly what the Indians said each other: Damn, this white man ass does not taste very good. .

Back to your question, it is not true. The most hated fish in Maryland - Snake Head from China is very pleasant tasting fish, its filet is white, firm, light and non-oily. It is one of the most expensive fish in China. It has a medicinal value and is commonly served to the weakest in the family.

Carp has been farm raised in China for more than 5000 years. It is a renewable food source in the southern China. After harvesting the Carps, the dropping in the pond is collected to use as fertilizer in the farm. The pond is then restocked. The cycle continues.

For both Snake Head and Carp, they have lot of small bones. With today's heavy handed government to protect the public, these fishes will most likely to be banned for public consumption. For people live in Asia, they are more adaptive, they can debone the fish with their mouth.

As for protecting the native species and banning invasive species, it is a losing battle. We can slow it down with great expense, but in the end, we will lose. With today's growth, the border between nations means very little. The world will continue to reach its own equilibrium when Delta S is the smallest. Nature is merciless and unfair. The dominant genes and products will win.
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