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Managing Zebra Mussels in Memphremagog

Training and emergency plan to better manage the introduction of the invasive species

  • Memphrémagog, Quebec

    Memphrémagog, Quebec

Prevent, detect, and respond quickly to protect ecosystems

Zebra mussels are an exotic invasive species that threaten aquatic ecosystems. In 2018, they were discovered in Lake Memphrémagog, a lake that straddles the US/Canada border. An emergency committee was quickly set up with various stakeholders to closely monitor the species, which can have major environmental, social, and economic impacts. As there was a high likelihood of zebra mussels being introduced into other lakes in the MRC des Collines-de-l’Outaouais of Memphrémagog, including nearby Lake Massawippi, it was important to act quickly to implement preventive measures and initiate appropriate monitoring.

Our team was hired by Bleu Massawippi to produce a risk management assessment regarding the likelihood of zebra mussels being introduced into Lake Massawippi. As part of the species monitoring—and to develop an effective early detection protocol—our team provided training on zebra mussel detection to biologists and technicians with Bleu Massawippi, Memphrémagog Conservation Inc., and the City of Sherbrooke.

Three years later, a population of zebra mussels was unfortunately detected in Lake Massawippi. However, early detection made it possible to respond quickly. We helped Bleu Massawippi produce a technical note including a scientific opinion and emergency recommendations to guide the initial phases of a coordinated emergency action plan. The plan helped us guide and then coordinate lake and watershed associations, the scientific community, and municipal, regional, provincial, and federal authorities to identify coordinated actions and implement measures to protect this important aquatic ecosystem.

Meet Our Team

Isabelle Picard, Senior Biologist

A project’s success comes from productive collaboration, which takes a combination of thoroughness and open-mindedness to achieve.

Mario Heppell, Project Director, Environment

Working on behalf of sustainable development and the environment, I have one of the best jobs in the world.
Mario Heppell Project Director, Environment Read More

Isabelle Picard

Senior Biologist

Mario Heppell

Project Director, Environment

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