LHC Marine Association unveils BLM partnership On Quagga

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LHC Marine Association unveils BLM partnership On Quagga
  • By BRANDON MESSICK Today’s News-Herald

At Vidal Junction, on the Arizona-California border, about 940 boats have been quarantined in the past four years. Of those watercraft, 700 were quarantined due to mussels attached to their anchors.

The Lake Havasu Marine Association has for three years worked with the U.S. Bureau of Land Management in its fight against invasive Quagga mussels, and the two agencies recently unveiled a public-private partnership to continue that fight.

The Marine Association enlisted the help of Ryan Dvorack, who owns Havasu-based Slide Anchors, with the hope of affixing mussel-advisory stickers to about 8,000 anchors produced each year by Dvorack’s company. According to Marine Association President Jim Salscheider, Slide Anchors was approached because they are the top-selling fresh-water anchors in Arizona, and the only anchor manufacturer that holds its own patent.

“(Dvorack) is doing it because it’s the right thing to do,” Salscheider said. “The Western States Invasive Species Group has endorsed the program, and Ryan is working on getting these stickers on all of his anchors.”

The stickers are actually engraved aluminum plates, affixed to the anchors by a powerful adhesive. The materials are expensive, and Salscheider said he hopes a $12,000 government grant will help cover costs.

“The nice thing is that the affect is going to be measurable,” Salscheider said. “If there are more stickers on anchors, and fewer quarantined vessels, we’ll know that it’s working.”


At Wednesday’s meeting, Salscheider introduced the new Manager of the Colorado River BLM District, William Mack, who assumed his position in mid-March.

“The Marine Association is helping to control the spread of aquatic invasive species on the lake, and we intend to do what we can as well,” Mack said. “I’m looking forward to the discussion…great things are possible if you put the right minds together to come up with a solution.”

According to BLM Lake Havasu City Office Manager Jason West, the lake is now “ground zero” for U.S. Quagga mussel interests. Volunteers will be needed, and the BLM hopes to spread Quagga awareness through the use of billboards posted around the lake.
 
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