Great Lakes Environmental Directory Great Lakes Great Lakes environment Great Lakes grants exotic species water pollution water export drilling environment Great Lakes pollution Superior Michigan Huron Erie Ontario ecology Great Lakes issues wetlands Great Lakes wetlands Great Lakes Great Lakes environment Great Lakes watershed water quality exotic species Great Lakes grants water pollution water export oil gas drilling environment environmental Great Lakes pollution Lake Superior Lake Michigan Lake Huron Lake Erie Lake Ontario Great Lakes ecology Great Lakes issues Great Lakes wetlands Great Lakes Resources Great Lakes activist Great Lakes environmental organizations Great Lakes Aquatic Habitat air pollution alien species threatened rare endangered species ecological Great Lakes information Success Stories Great Lakes Directory Home/News Great Lakes Calendar Great Lakes jobs/volunteering Search Great Lakes Organizations Take Action! Contact Us Resources/Links Great Lakes Issues Great Lakes News Article About Us Networking Services

Great Lakes Article:

Another invasive species in Great Lakes waters
By Mike Zielinski
The News-Herald
Published January 19, 2007

A species of shrimp previously found only in the seas of Eastern Europe has now been discovered in the Muskegon Channel of Lake Michigan.

The mysid, Hemimysis anomala, was found in the channel in November. It is the most recent addition to a list of Great Lakes invader species that now numbers 183.

Researchers at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Great Lakes Research Lab, who found swarms of bloody red mysid, said the half-inch shrimp were likely brought into the Great Lakes in the ballast water of an oceangoing freighter.

"It came from the Ponto-Caspian region, the same area that gave us zebra mussels, quagga mussels and the goby," said Steve Pothoven, an NOAA fisheries biologist.

Eight years ago, two Canadian scientists predicted the bright orange Hemimysis anomala was a likely candidate to follow other Caspian Sea region invaders such as the zebra mussel into the Great Lakes if more wasn't done to stop the discharge of contaminated ballast water from oceangoing freighters traveling up the St. Lawrence Seaway.

One of those scientists, Anthony Ricciardi of McGill University in Montreal, describes it as another sign of an "ecological takeover" of the Great Lakes by species native to the Black and Caspian Sea regions. The dominant mollusk in most parts of the Great Lakes is now the zebra or quagga mussel while the dominant zooplankton is the fishhook water flea.

Protection of Great Lakes waters should have been a major subject in 1957 when the St. Lawrence Seaway was completed and opened up shipping from the Atlantic Ocean to the Great Lakes. Those old enough should remember how the immediate impact was a massive invasion of sea lampreys that have mostly eradicated the native lake trout species in the Great Lakes.

We have been invaded by exotic species at about a rate of four a year for the last 30 years. The old saw "It doesn't do much good to close the barn once the horse is out" is pretty applicable here.

Federal agencies should have stopped the introduction of the mysid, just as they should have stopped every other nonnative species brought in through ballast waters.

This information is posted for nonprofit educational purposes, in accordance with U.S. Code Title 17, Chapter 1,Sec. 107 copyright laws.
For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for
purposes of your own that go beyond "fair use," you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.


Great Lakes environmental information

Return to Great Lakes Directory Home/ Site Map