State agencies ask Lakefair attendees to help prevent spread of mud snails
Although Capitol Lake and Heritage Park will be featured during the annual Lakefair festivities, state agencies dealing with an invasive species are reminding the public that the lake remains closed indefinitely to all uses.
The Golf Island fund-raising activity at Lakefair will be permitted. Event organizers, the Rotary Club of West Olympia, have signed an agreement requiring the cleaning of all equipment involved prior to removal from the lake.
The cleaning of the equipment is necessary to prevent the accidental spread of the mud snails to other bodies of water in Washington. In addition, state agencies advise the public to stay out of the lake and to keep their pets from entering the water. Mud snails, which are about the size of a grain of rice, are easily transported to other bodies of water. They are able to attach themselves to shoes, clothing and animal fur.
To help prevent the spread of the snails, General Administration installed 400 feet of fencing along the steps to the gravel beach adjacent to the seawall at Heritage Park.
Signs posted at multiple locations note the closure of the lake, although people and pets continue to enter the water, especially from the beach area.
The goal of the indefinite closure is to reduce the likelihood of the Invasive pest from spreading to other waters. The snails multiply rapidly and can quickly ruin an infested area. As many as 500,000 can be found in an area about the size of two large cereal boxes.
General Administration and the departments of Fish and Wildlife, Natural Resources and Ecology are now researching further efforts to contain and possibly eradicate the mud snails.
More details are available at: http://wdfw.wa.gov/fish/ans/