The Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation received a grant from federal agencies to help monitor for quagga and zebra mussels in the Columbia River reservoirs behind Grand Coulee and Chief Joseph dams.
With a $260,000 grant from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and National Park Service, the Colville Tribes' Fish and Wildlife Department plans to monitor 10 additional sites over the next four years along Lake Roosevelt and Rufus Woods Lake, a news release from the tribal department said. The 10 new sites will be added to 19 sites currently monitored in the upper Columbia River by the Spokane Tribe and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.
Monitoring data will be provided to the WDFW's Aquatic Invasive Species Program, which monitors sites throughout the Columbia Basin.
The funding will also enable the Colville Tribe to provide training for staff to identify invasive mussels and prevent them from spreading, decontaminate vessels and report information to the appropriate agencies. Funds will also help the tribe purchase equipment and operate a wash-down station at boat launches on the western shores of both lakes.
"Invasive mussels are prolific breeders and will infest water facility infrastructure such as water intakes, gates, diversion screens, hydropower equipment, pumps, pipelines, and boats," Colville fisheries biologist Holly McLellan said in the release.