ZEBRA MUSSEL COLONY (photo courtesy Wikipedia)

State officials are telling boaters to start draining their vessels before and after every outing.

Texas is trying to prevent the Invasion of the Zebra Mussel. Those little shelled devils are like junior X-Men, tough to beat.

Blotch first warned you about the dreaded zebra mussel showing signs of invading Lake Worth and Joe Pool Lake back in 2013.


The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission just announced a new regulation requiring that “all boats operating on public fresh water anywhere in Texas be drained before leaving or approaching a lake or river to help combat the further spread of zebra mussels and other invasive species.”

The rule applies to all boats whether powered or not — basically any vessel used on public waters. The state is insisting that you clean, drain, and dry your boat on every outing because the mussels aren’t visible to the human eye in their initial state.

Zebra mussels reproduce like rabbits, but lack the cute little pink noses and whiskers. They have no known predators, and they colonize like bees on docks, plants, piers, other animals, and, tragically, boats. Health officials discourage against eating them.

Zebra mussels’ sharp edges create safety hazards for swimmers, and they can plug public-water pipes at lakes.

The rule about draining boats was already in place in 47 Texas counties, including Tarrant, but is now being expanded statewide.