Invasive zebra mussels - Credit: Black Press File Photo

False alarm for invasive mussels found on boat at Osoyoos border

The mussels were already dead

A mussel-fouled boat stopped at the Osoyoos border turned out to be a false alarm.

The boat was stopped last weekend after several attached mussels were found, according to the Okanagan WaterWise Facebook page. The boat owner had purchased the boat several years before with the mussels, which were already dead.

The Don’t Move A Mussel initiative, with the Okanagan Basin Water Board, aims to prevent invasive zebra and quagga mussels from reaching B.C. waters.

This time last year, the province amplified measures to boost the initiative by adding 35 more auxiliary conservation officers for boat and watercraft inspections.

Anyone suspected of transporting mussels into B.C. could have their boat or other watercraft quarantined for up to 30 days, and if found to be transporting mussels—dead or alive—could face fines of up to $50,000 for a first offence.

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