An invasive species is typically considered to be a species that is found in an area outside of its native range that has undergone rapid population growth to the point of disrupting native species of an area.
Aquatic refers to species that live in or near water for at least part of their lives.
An invertebrate is a creature that does not have a backbone. They encompass a wide range of creatures, from mussels to snails.
While there are a variety of invasive aquatic invertebrates affecting the U.S., and Connecticut specifically, this website focuses on six: the zebra mussel, the quagga mussel, the Chinese mitten crab, the Asian clam, the rusty crayfish, and the New Zealand mud snail. The quagga mussel and New Zealand mud snail have not yet been found in Connecticut, but are included as they are likely a future concern that people should be aware of. Feel free to investigate any or all of these species using the buttons to the right.
While it may be difficult to deal with aquatic invasive invertebrates once they have been established in an area, an easy way of mitigating the damage they can do is by preventing their spread.
How to Help:
-Check your boats and fishing equipment for attached aquatic invasive species.
-Clean off any evidence of organisms, dirt, or other debris while you are still at the location that you used your equipment.
-Drain ballast tanks before leaving the area.
-Make sure your boat or fishing equipment dries completely before using it again to ensure no aquatic organisms can survive on it.
-Disinfect all your equipment, especially that which is not completely dry, before further use.
Prevent the Spread of Aquatic Invasive Species. New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.
[accessed 2019 Mar 26]. https://www.dec.ny.gov/animals/48221.html.