Quagga Mussel - Dreissena rostriformis bugensis
This is a species alert issued as part of the GB rapid response protocol:
In October 2014 Quagga Mussel was found in Wraysbury Reservoir and the Wraysbury River, a tributary of the River Colne, near Egham, Surrey, and subsequently in a number of other waterbodies. This is the first UK record of this species.
The Quagga Mussel (Dreissena rostriformis bugensis) is a highly invasive non-native freshwater mussel from the Ponto-Caspian region, very similar to Zebra Mussel. It can significantly alter whole ecosystems by filtering out large quantities of nutrients and is also a serious biofouling risk blocking pipes smothering boat hulls and other structures.
There is no effective eradication method for quagga mussel once it has established in a reservoir and the downstream river system. As recommended in a recent review commissioned by Defra of options to deal with the arrival of quagga mussel, the best method of slowing the spread of the quagga mussel is by applying better biosecurity through the Check, Clean, Dry approach.
You can learn more about biosecurity here: www.nonnativespecies.org/checkcleandry
Further sightings should be reported online using this reporting form:
Or send an email with a photograph and location details to: firstname.lastname@example.org
A briefing note for this species is provided below, along with information on identification, biosecurity and other resources.
Quagga Mussel resources:
- Alert poster
- Quagga mussel Briefing Note 1
- Quagga mussel Briefing Note 2
- Quagga mussel specific biosecurity for anglers, watercraft users and submerged structures
- Research report: preparing for the quagga mussel (Dreissena rostriformis bugensis) in Great Britain
- NNSIP factsheet
[Image courtesy of David Aldridge of the University of Cambridge]