Aquatic Invasives

Image © JAMES DOWLING-HEALE, CREATIVECOMMONS.ORG/LICENSES/BY-NC-SA/3.0/
Aquatic invasive species live in and around lakes, waterways and wetlands. Many “hitchhike” on watercraft, bait buckets and other recreational gear. Others arrive when people illegally empty bait buckets or aquariums into lakes and waterways.

Asian Clam HITCHHIKER

Originally from Southeast Asia, Asian clams (Corbicula fluminea) are a prolific and highly competitive species capable of rapid growth and spread.
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Chinese Mystery Snail

Originally from Asia, Chinese mystery snails (Cipangopaludina chinensis) are a common addition to fish tanks.
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Common Carp

Common carp (Cyprinus carpio) is a widespread freshwater fish of lakes, ponds, wetlands and medium to large river systems.
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Common Reed

Common reed (Phragmites australis), also called phragmites, is a perennial wetland grass.
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Curly Leaf Pondweed HITCHHIKER

Curly leaf pondweed (Potamogeton crispus) is a perennial originally from Eurasia, Africa and Australia.
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Eurasian Water Milfoil HITCHHIKER

Eurasian water milfoil (Myriophyllum spicatum) is a submersed perennial herb.
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Flowering Rush

Flowering rush (Butomus umbellatus) is a submersed perennial herb.
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Goldfish and Koi

Goldfish (Carassius auratur auratus) are closely related to the common carp, and koi (Cyprinus carpio) are actually common carp selected and bred for their color.
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Purple Loosestrife

Purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria) is originally from Europe and Asia.
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Red Swamp Crayfish HITCHHIKER

The red swamp crayfish (Procambarus clarkii) is dark red with raised bright red spots and a black wedge-shaped stripe on the top of its abdomen.
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Reed Canary Grass

Reed canary grass (Phalaris arundinacea) is a cool-season grass that forms dense stands in wet meadows, marshes and areas around rivers.
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Rusty Crayfish HITCHHIKER

The aggressive rusty crayfish (Orconectes rusticus) grows to 4 inches long and has distinctive rusty spots on its sides.
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Weather Loach

The weather loach (Misgurnus anguillicaudatus) is a fish with an eel-like body that grows up to 9 inches long.
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Zebra Mussel HITCHHIKER

Zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) are recent invaders in waterways across the United States.
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