The zebra mussel is a small shellfish found in all the Great Lakes, all of the large navigable rivers in the eastern United States, and in many small lakes in the Great Lakes region. They are known to proliferate rapidly, forming large colonies that can block piping, impair navigational and recreational boating and have serious impacts on the ecosystem. The zebra mussel primarily feed on phytoplankton, which can lead to a depletion of phytoplankton biomass and dissolved organic carbon in the water when an overpopulation of zebra mussel exists.

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