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Zebra mussels found in Lake Melissa near Detroit Lakes

Zebra mussels have been discovered in Lake Melissa near Detroit Lakes, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources confirmed Friday.

The DNR’s discovery is the first time the invasive species has been found in the Detroit Lakes area, Barry Stratton, the DNR Ecological and Water Resources Division’s southern district manager, said in a news release.

The DNR also searched Lake Sallie and Mill Pond but found no zebra mussels. But due to their location downstream from Lake Melissa, Mill Pond and Minnow Pond have also been designated as infested.

“We’re extremely pleased that this discovery was reported so quickly and with such detail. The report included specific location information and photos that allowed us to respond immediately to the exact spot,” Stratton said in the release.

Zebra mussels are an invasive species that can crowd out native mussels and larval fish by fighting for food. They move to new bodies of water by attaching to the hulls of boats and ships.

Minnesota has been battling the spread of zebra mussels for years. The DNR recently discovered the mussels in Lake Ida, Lake Charley and Lake Louise near Alexandria.