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DNR steps up surveillance on West Battle, Otter Tail lakes because of zebra mussel

Two area lakes will be the target of DNR stepped up surveillance next week because of a zebra mussel scare.

Conservation officers will be stepping up surveillance and enforcement on West Battle Lake and Otter Tail lakes. Boaters will be allowed to have water in live wells or bait buckets.

The zebra mussel was found recently near Alexandria. Heavy infestation can heavily damage beaches and harm fish habitat. By removing aquatic plants and dumping all water the infestation to other lakes can be avoided.

"One of the best things is if you are keeping fish is to bring a cooler with ice and dispatch the fish and stick it on ice, easiest and probably have a better tasting fish anyway."

DNR officers will be handing out education materials at the public access sites that focus on ways to avoid transporting invasive species.