Originally Posted by restrac2000
Have you read up much on the mussels? Its pretty well established that they are more common on motorized rigs, especially those that hold any sort of water from the lakes they use. Its not a bashing of motorized used so much as a well established fact of the mussels life cycle. You don't hear about the spread of these types of invasives from kayaks and rafts because its not common. There is a reason most western states require motor boats to pull over at borders or go through a procedure at lakes. Yeah, Powell required me to be interviews when I launched my kayak trip there but it was as easy as a single question. Its also a matter of #s....where these invasives are being transported (to and from) are largely used by motor boats.
You are barking up the wrong tree on this one...both of us are rather friendly or at least accepting of motor crowds.
And its not a matter of panicking as being fairly educated on the subject. This isn't new. And the potential harm is much more than a disease that affects a few species. From an ecological level we are talking about a species that has the potential (and has already elsewhere) forever altering the habitat. The cascade is not healthy for how we understand these systems or how we currently use them. From a human systems standpoints they have the potential to destroy hydroelectric systems with relatively no recourse.
And maybe Whirling Disease didn't affect your region much but we lost several of our local hatcheries which alone is millions of dollars in damage, lost jobs and rather lengthy changes to our regional fishing opportunities. Its also a great example of how writing off educated responses as "panicking" is inaccurate. The concerted actions of wildlife managers, scientists and stakeholders had a significant influence on the spread and impact of the parasite. Doing so meant understanding how it was spread and taking rational and educated measures to reduce its impact.
The first stage of doing so for zebra and quagga mussels has been effective but obviously not enough. They are still spreading. As I said before the most direct option is not politically and socially possible as we know it; citizens would not allow themselves to be hampered by a policy that restricts transportation of motor boats between regional waterways. Not sure how agencies can further respond at this point. But your response is not an accurate portrayal of the conversation or the scale of the issue (ecological and human infrastructure).
In the Great Lakes alone....researchers estimate the cost to be more than $3.1 billion for power industry and $5billion for local economies. And that was just for a 6 year period.
wow - I wasn't implying that you, Andy or anyone else on this thread was panicking, it was meant more inline with the comments above at adding other invasive species to attack the current invasive species to attack the previous one... you know ye olde "I knew and old lady who swallowed a fly" concept.
I'm also certainly not advocating doing nothing, and I definitely didn't write off anyone's response...I guess that's what I get for trying to be concise.
Yes, I have some working knowledge of invasive species, including aquatic invasives... mostly plants but I've read a bit about zebra muscles, not particularly the Quagga but the problem they pose is crystal clear...
I didn't say you were bashing, you simply singled out one user type, in my experience that is counter productive. I agree completely that it's more common in power boats, I own and operate both, I understand, but it's still possible. If motorboats can spread the mussel, so can rafts, kayak's, sandals, felt soles and dreadlocks. to paraphrase: Take ownership, work together and don't point fingers!
Here in boondock land all boats must stop at check stations. I wonder how many "paddlers" don't think it applies to them?
I know that the invasive mussels are a different type of problem, but...
As I already mentioned I know they're not the same thing, however, not all ecological Armageddon's live up to the hype...let's work the problem, preferably without making it worse. And maybe if we're lucky the problem will be less devastating than predicted... At least it wouldn't be the first time.
Just a point of argument about whirling disease, the overall impacts were a tiny, tiny fraction of what was forecast. I was not trying to belittle those it did impact but by most accounts Montana was going to be amongst the hardest hit because we don't stock rivers. The result was to be loss of genetically "pure" strains of salmonids. In the end it was the wild fish that "saved" the day, the genetic diversity allowed for reasonable numbers of tolerant individuals, those that survived, repopulated stretches with resistant fish. Ultimately whirling disease probably did more good than harm to our fishery (again sorry for the few guides that had to find temp work for a few summers).
I still stand behind my original statement. If you were to propose legislation, phrased as you did above, you'd have every power boater out their rallying against paddlers.... For fuck sakes, All I'm saying, is let's not make the road to recovery any harder than it has to be. This is all of our problem work it together with a minimum additional regulations! I realize it's the buzz, but do we have to fight about everything?