BALSAM LAKE, WI -- The Polk County Land & Water Resources Department (LWRD) is announcing a free Zebra Mussel Forum which will be held virtually through Microsoft Teams, from 9 am to 3 pm on Thursday, February 2nd. The forum is intended for lake residents, lake organization members, business owners, and citizens of Northwest Wisconsin.

Zebra mussels were first detected in Polk County in 2016 in Deer Lake and were found in Balsam Lake and Lake Wapogasset in 2022. Polk County residents and visitors are working hard to prevent the spread of invasive species into other county lakes. One of the best tools in the toolbox is education. LWRD is eager to get the word out on how lakeside residents and recreational users can help keep our waters healthy and encourages everyone to participate in the virtual forum. The forum will cover an introduction to zebra mussels, their impact on fisheries, zebra mussel decontamination in Northwest Wisconsin, zebra mussel monitoring, zebra mussel control research, and zebra mussel management options for Wisconsin.

This forum will include presentations from Wisconsin DNR, UWEX-Lakes, National Park Service, University of Minnesota, Washburn County, Polk County, and lake residents representing the Lipsett Lake Association, Bone Lake Management District, and McKenzie Lakes Association.

Reporting invasive species is the first step in containing their spread. Maintaining and restoring our waters and landscapes can reduce the impacts even when we don't have other management options for an invasive species. If you think you find zebra mussels in any waterbody please take a picture, collect a specimen, and contact the Polk County Land and Water Resources Department at 715-485-8699.

The Zebra Mussel Forum is presented by the Balsam Lake Protection & Rehabilitation District, Bone Lake Management District, Burnett County Land Services Department, Deer Lake Conservancy, Deer Lake Improvement Association, Harmony Environmental, Lake Wapogasset & Bear Trap Lake Improvement Association, Lake Wapogasset & Bear Trap Lake Sanitary District, Lake Wapogasset & Bear Trap Lake Conservancy, National Park Service, Polk County Association of Lakes and Rivers, Polk County Land and Water Resources Department, Washburn County Land and Water Conservation Department, Wild Rivers Conservancy, and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

To receive access to the forum through Microsoft Teams and participate, please email

Last Update: Jan 21, 2023 2:07 pm CST

Posted In


Share This Article