Truckee mussels get off-road experience
August 21, 2015
Native freshwater mussels are being plucked from a section of the Upper Truckee River near the Lake Tahoe Airport in South Lake Tahoe in preparation for diverting the river in 2016 as part of the Upper Truckee River Reach 5 Restoration Project.
The U.S. Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit is using all-terrain vehicles and coolers filled with river water and ice to transport the shellfish.
Due to the long distance between some of the existing mussel beds and access roads, the ATVs are being used as needed to transport the mussels to reduce stress the mussels have to endure during relocation activities.
The ATV use is limited to only those areas that are farthest from the access roads and existing trails, officials said. The temporary ATV use may continue through November, depending on weather and soil conditions.
Crews will rehabilitate ATV tracks at the end of the season and a sign will be posted to inform the public that the area is closed to motor vehicles.
Other restoration project activities this year include irrigation and seasoning of the recently constructed stream channel, hauling of rocks to the Sunset Stables staging area and best management practice activities that will prepare the staging area for the winter season. The final phase of the restoration project will resume in 2016.
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For more information about the project, visit http://www.fs.usda.gov/goto/ltbmu/UpperTruckeeRestoration.