Clean Water

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From Missouri Conservationist: Dec 2007

Stream Team

Tim Smith & Friends

  • Stream Team #: 3398
  • Date formed: July 10, 2007
  • Location: Springfield
  • For more info about Stream Teams: see the links listed below.

Tim Smith sort of backed into starting a Stream Team. He became a volunteer water-quality monitor in 1993 when he was the storm-water engineer for the Greene County Planning and Zoning Commission. Stream Team officials recently noticed that he had never registered as a Stream Team, so they signed him up. Smith, who now is Greene County’s resource management administrator, said most of his coworkers have helped him conduct water testing at one time or another. “It was a useful thing,” he said. “We have used it as a training opportunity for our staff over the years. It’s kinda fun getting everybody out there estimating stream flow and showing them the critters.” Beyond that, he said the information he has gathered in 14 years of monitoring Clear Creek has practical value. “We have quarterly records. In another 50 years, we won’t have to guess what has gone on in the creek.”

Don’t Spread Zebra Mussels

These invasive aquatic animals cause harm to Missouri’s rivers, lakes and streams

Biologists made an unpleasant discovery in October when they found zebra mussels in the Osage River just downstream from Bagnell Dam. The zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) is native to Eurasia. It entered North America in the ballast tanks of seagoing ships in the 1980s. It has been highly destructive in some waters, displacing native animals, clogging industrial and municipal water intakes and causing millions of dollars of damage to boats, docks and other property.

Zebra mussels spread by hitching rides on boats, trailers and other marine equipment. Missourians can help avoid causing further spread of zebra mussels by taking the following precautions:

  • Inspect every part of boats, trailers, and other equipment that have been in the water before moving them to a new location. Be sure to closely inspect nooks and crannies around intake screens, trim plates, etc.
  • Remove suspected zebra mussels, along with vegetation or other material clinging to boats and trailers, and deposit in a trash container.
  • Report suspected zebra mussels to the Conservation Department.
  • Rinse boat bilges, trailers, motor drive units and live wells. Use water at least 104 degrees if live zebra mussels are found, or if your craft has been in waters known to be infested with zebra mussels. Most commercial car washes meet this standard.
  • After rinsing, allow boats and other equipment to dry in the sun for at least five days before relaunching.

To learn how to identify zebra mussels, write to MDC, Zebra Mussel Watch Card and Zebra Mussel: Missouri’s Most Unwanted, P.O. Box 180, Jefferson City, MO 65102, or e-mail

This Issue's Staff

Editor in Chief - Ara Clark
Managing Editor - Nichole LeClair
Art Director - Cliff White
Writer/editor - Tom Cwynar
Staff Writer - Bonnie Chasteen
Staff Writer - Jim Low
Staff Writer - Arleasha Mays
Photographer - Noppadol Paothong
Photographer - David Stonner
Designer - Stephanie Ruby
Artist - Dave Besenger
Artist - Mark Raithel
Circulation - Laura Scheuler