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Zebra Mussels and Gear

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba' started by Dubious, Jul 14, 2019.

  1. Dubious

    Dubious ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    336
    214
    Greetings,

    Quick question. My wife and I dived a lake with the invasive Zebra mussels. I know boats are to take extra care but what about us divers? We rinse our gear after every dive. We sometimes just hang the gear and rinse off with hose while other times we fill our dive bin with water. Is that enough? What about the wing? We normally just let the water out, but should we do more? We want to make sure we are doing our part.

    Thanks.
     
    Divingblueberry likes this.
  2. melanie.

    melanie. Contributor

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Ontario, Canada
    298
    227
    Will your gear have a chance to completely dry? Going off memory here but I believe 5-7 days dry can kill of any left.

    Great question and one that concerns us all!
     
  3. Marie13

    Marie13 Great Lakes Mermaid ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Great Lakes
    8,342
    6,883
    The Great Lakes, plus the quarries I dive, have the mussels. I don't worry about it. Friends do a lot of Great Lakes diving, too, and I haven't heard anyone raise this concern. We're mostly of the "we dive freshwater so we don't rinse much" mentality. Pretty much only time I rinse my gear is when it's got gravel from the quarry on it.
     
  4. DogDiver

    DogDiver Contributor

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Branford, Florida
    839
    672
    To answer your question. The zebra mussel larvae can live up to two weeks in a warm, dark, moist environment. Sound like the inside of your BCD? So yes.
     
    Snoweman likes this.
  5. Dubious

    Dubious ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    336
    214
    We dive about once per week, so yes.

    Not all of our lakes and quarries have them yet. I don’t recall seeing any at pearl lake in south Beloit either.

    Wow that long! Should I disassemble the the wing to rinse it out well and get as much water out as I can?
     
  6. Cert1967

    Cert1967 Let's Go Skiing

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Vail, Colorado
    412
    300
    Mussel infestations threaten Colorado reservoirs
    Invasive Mussels | Bureau of Reclamation

    My opinion? Probably not good enough.

    Problem in Colorado.

    I made several dives in Lake MIchigan last year. It had been about 40 years since my last cold water dives - and it wasn’t any warmer. Cold! But the water was surprisingly clear. Blue on the surface - full sun, no clouds - and a dull green below. But, you could see.

    What’s next for Lake Michigan? The Asian Carp? What happened to my LM perch?
     
  7. Cert1967

    Cert1967 Let's Go Skiing

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Vail, Colorado
    412
    300
    Lake Michigan has become dramatically clearer in last 20 years — but at a steep cost

    The damage has long since been done to Lake Michigan’s fishery. Divers had nothing to do with the introduction of filter feeders to Lake Michigan, but the economic impact - the loss of fishing dollars - dwarfs the minuscule economic impact of scuba LM dollars.
     
  8. melanie.

    melanie. Contributor

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Ontario, Canada
    298
    227
    I would. Use hot hot soapy water. Anything you can do to protect the other bodies of water around you is a good thing. Realistically doesn't add that much time either and wont hurt your gear to get a good clean
     
    Ana likes this.
  9. Altamira

    Altamira ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: TX
    1,955
    2,005
    I do volunteer diving at Spring Lake (the old Aquarena Springs) at San Marcos, TX. It is a highly protected habitat, and prior to diving there, we must submerge our gear for 20 minutes in a 20% vinegar/80% water solution if the gear will not be damaged in the vinegar solution. Exceptions being if the previous dive using the same equipment was in Spring Lake, or a chlorinated pool, or a salt water environment. They also did not seem concerned about cleaning the dive gear if not used for a couple of weeks. When I occasionally dive in our recently zebra mussel contaminated lake where I live, I just stop at the local pool on the way home, give the gear a good soaking, letting chlorinated water into the bladder, and then rinse with fresh water when I get home. There is no mention or guidance about using hot soapy water in the Meadows Spring Lake Dive Authorization Course materials.
     
    driftwood likes this.
  10. Dubious

    Dubious ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    336
    214
    Thanks. Do you think our salt water hot tub would suffice which has 3ish ppm of chlorine? I might even be able to fill the bladder from our well water filtration system. We have a chlorinated reaction tank with a valve after to check for free chlorine which we keep at 1ppm.

    This seems like a very interesting place to dive. I might have to read more about this site. $230 for the class is high but sounds like they provide a lot of great instruction.
     

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