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Mass. steps up zebra mussel fighting efforts

April 8, 2010

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PITTSFIELD, Mass.—State environmental authorities want to triple the number of boat ramp monitors in Berkshire County to stop the spread of the invasive zebra mussel, but local groups say it's not enough.

The Zebra Mussel Task Force, headed by Phil Griffiths of the Executive Office of Environmental Affairs, has recommended increasing from two to six the number of state-funded ramp monitors working at seven area lakes.

The monitors, as well as local volunteers, ensure craft being launched are free of the destructive mollusk and educate the public about stopping their spread.

The Berkshire Eagle reports that some residents asked Griffiths on Wednesday to increase the number of boat washing stations.

The mussel, which destroys ecosystems and chokes off pipes, was discovered in Massachusetts last July in Laurel Lake in Lee.

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Information from: The Berkshire Eagle, http://www.berkshireeagle.com

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