What a year! Research highlights from MN Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center

2016 was a big year at MAISRC! From opening our newly renovated, state-of-the-art containment lab in February to welcoming a new co-director, Nick Phelps, in July, and -- most importantly -- lots of research accomplishments, we've been busy! We're grateful for your support throughout the year and are excited to share with you some research highlights from the year.
Invasive invertebrates:
  • Completed sequencing of a draft genome of the zebra mussel, which we will use to explore possible genetic weaknesses that can be targeted for control
  • Launched a new project to determine the long-term impacts of spiny waterflea using lake sediment data
  • Evaluated treatment options to develop a set of rapid response protocols for treating localized zebra mussel infestations
Check out more invertebrate research highlights here.
Invasive plants:
  • Determined that improving lake water clarity can help native plants re-establish after treatment of Eurasian watermilfoil — and hopefully reduce the need for further chemical treatments
  • Kicked off a new suite of research on starry stonewort, curly-leaf pondweed, and Eurasian watermilfoil which includes risk assessment, herbicide screening, and evaluation of prevention techniques
Check out more plant research highlights here.
Invasive fish:
  • Made final recommendations to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for modifying gate operations to reduce passage of Bigheaded carps through Lock & Dam 8, and began work to do the same at Lock & Dams 2 and 5
  • Developed a species-specific delivery system for a toxin to control common carp
Check out more fish research highlights here.
Pathogens and harmful microbes:
  • Identified two novel viruses in carp which could be harnessed for use as a biocontrol
  • Sampled for Heterosporis, a disease that threatens many native fish species, in Cass Lake and conducted research to determine how fish become infected, how the parasite spreads, and how water temperature impacts the parasite.
Check out more pathogen research highlights here.
And more!

Join us in 2017

We have big plans for next year, but we need you by our side. Help us do this critical work with a gift today -- private contributions to MAISRC make a real difference and provide us with the flexibility to meet critical needs as they arise Your gift today will help propel our groundbreaking research projects on starry stonewort, zebra mussels, spiny waterflea, and other invasive species forward.

Next year, we'll also be working to find a source of stable funding to sustain the Center past our current grant period of 2019. If you're interested in helping with this legislative endeavor, please contact us.

Thank you for all you do to protect Minnesota’s cherished lakes, rivers, and wetlands!