Quagga Mussels: A Change In The Great Lakes

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Cool, calm crashing waves along the coast of the Great Lakes is an timeless picture many generations have enjoyed. The Great Lakes have the same beautiful views as it does in years past. However, the inside of the lakes have completely changed. It’s no longer the same lake your grandfather knows nor will it be the same lake for your grandchildren. Dr. Harvey Bootsma discussed the changes the Great Lake faces from invasive species and prevention because in 2050 the Great Lakes will be U.S.’s most valuable natural resource with 20 percent of world’s freshwater. “It’s hard to manage a system when it’s always changing,” said Dr. Harvey Bootsma, Associate Professor for School of Freshwater Sciences at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.…show more content…
It’s hard to manage system when there are constant changes. A large change in Lake Michigan started about 25 years ago when Quagga Mussels got into the system. The bottom of the lake is now covered with them because the smooth surface and cold water is the ideal for habitat for quagga mussels to grow on. Quagga Mussels can filter up to four liters water per day. Positively it has helped Lake Michigan’s water clarity which people like said Dr. Bootsma. The last couple of years it is 15-20 M clarity while in the past it was around 8-12M, twice as clear as it use to be. quagga mussels eat plankton making the This seems all well except water clarity allows more sunlight to the bottom letting algae grow like wildfire. The algae washes up on shores and destroy the beautiful of the beaches. This also has a side effect on the economy. A nuclear power plant had to be shut down from the algae problem which has cost them hundreds of thousands of dollars per day. The fishing economy worth $7 billion in WI is also affected by the quagga mussels. There are five times more quagga mussels than fish in Lake Michigan. Quagga mussels eat plankton which is the food supply for

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