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Media Advisory - Zebra Mussel Conference Media Briefing
- Subject: Media Advisory - Zebra Mussel Conference Media Briefing
- From: "Marie E. Zhuikov" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 09:38:50 -0500 (CDT)
- List-Name: GLIN-Announce
- Reply-To: "Marie E. Zhuikov" <email@example.com>
MN SEA GRANT
DATE: 4/14/99 CONTACT: Marie Zhuikov
PHONE: (218) 726-7677
Aquatic Nuisance Species Conference Media Briefing
9:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m., Monday, April 26, 1999
Duluth Entertainment Convention Center, Duluth, MN
WHAT: A briefing on research presented at the Ninth International Zebra Mussel
and Aquatic Nuisance Species Conference. This conference is considered the most
comprehensive forum for experts to present results concerning impacts of marine
and freshwater aquatic nuisance species. It is being held at the Duluth
Entertainment Convention Center (DECC) April 26-30, 1999.
WHERE: Split Rock Room -- DECC, Duluth, MN, 350 Harbor Drive. One hour of
presentations, including questions and answers. Conference abstracts and related
materials available on-site. Submissions for the youth poster contest, and
specimens of various exotic species will be in the briefing room.
WHO: A conference keynote speaker (science advisor to the Secretary of the
Interior) will make a statement, followed by five national leaders in aquatic
nuisance species research, who will present their latest findings. Topics will
- using chili pepper-based paints on boats to deter zebra mussel attachment
- using zebra mussels to filter livestock waste
- using pheromones to control sea lamprey and ruffe
- how Eurasian ruffe impact yellow perch in experimental enclosures
- what's up with zebra mussels in the Duluth-Superior Harbor
See more information about briefing speakers below.
WHY: Although zebra mussels are the most widely known aquatic nuisance species
(ANS), dozens of others require attention because they are causing significant
damage to marine and freshwater resources and to the economies that depend upon
them. That's why the conference features nearly two dozen aquatic invasive
species, and special ruffe and round goby sessions. Participants and speakers
will share the latest findings, technology, management strategies, and public
education programs related to ANS prevention and control. This year's
conference takes a proactive look at some controversial topics, including the
future use of chlorine for ANS control, the pros and cons of biological
controls, and ballast water control technology and policy. Each year the
conference attracts about 400 participants from across the United States, Canada
and other countries, who will have the opportunity to listen to nearly 125
NEWS ANGLES: Earth Day is April 22, within the same week as the conference.
ANS are considered "biological pollution," which is certainly a timely Earth Day
topic. If you're looking for a more positive spin, several briefing speakers
will discuss natural control measures to deter these nuisance species, and ways
ANS can be used to help the environment. This briefing and the conference will
provide convenient access and information to reporters about current ANS
MEDIA BRIEFING SPEAKER SCHEDULE:
Jeff Gunderson, Minnesota Sea Grant, will open with an overview of the
conference, followed by keynote speaker, William Brown, Science Advisor to the
Secretary. Brown will give a short version of his speech about how the
Department of the Interior is taking the lead to implement the new Executive
Order on Alien Invasive Species.
Mary Balcer, University of Wisconsin-Superior, will talk about zebra mussel
population dynamics in the Duluth-Superior Harbor. The excessively mild winter
of 1997-98 resulted in unprecedented numbers of zebra mussels. Balcer is
currently investigating whether these young mussels were able to survive the
winter of 1998-99, which could cause another population boom.
Lorenzo Torres, an independent researcher and consultant working with the New
Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, and MEDD4, Houston, TX, will talk
about the successful bonding process he developed that allows capsaicin
(trans-8-methyl-N-vanillyl-5-neomide), the pungent active ingredient found in
dried chile peppers, to be used as an anti-fouling agent in paints, stains,
plastics and other rubberized materials.
Richard Steffan, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL, will discuss
initial positive findings about the ability of zebra mussels to filter and treat
Peter Sorensen, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN, will talk about how sea
lamprey can be literally "led by the nose" into traps by putting pheromones into
the rivers where they congregate to spawn. This is being considered as an
alternative to lamprey control via chemical toxins. Sorensen is also
investigating similar control methods for the Eurasian ruffe and the round goby,
both nuisance fish.
Jeffrey Schuldt, Natural Resources Research Institute, University of Minnesota
Duluth, will discuss what ecological impacts ruffe may have on native Great
Lakes fish. Schuldt found that ruffe had a negative effect on food resources
and yellow perch growth when they were kept in experimental enclosures.
FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE BRIEFING: Contact Marie Zhuikov, Minnesota Sea
Grant, by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, phone (218) 726-7677, or FAX (218)
TO RSVP FOR THE BRIEFING AND/OR REGISTER FOR THE CONFERENCE: Please RSVP for the
briefing by 5 p.m. (central time), Thursday, April 22 by contacting Marie
Zhuikov (see information above). The briefing is free. A reduced registration
fee of $240 is available for reporters who wish to attend the full conference.
To register for the conference, contact Elizabeth Muckle-Jeffs, conference
administrator, at 1-800-868-8776.
TO CONTACT CONFERENCE SPEAKERS ON-SITE: Call (218) 722-5573, Extension 162, and
ask for the media contact person.
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON EXOTIC SPECIES RESEARCH: Contact Jeff Gunderson or Doug
Jensen, Minnesota Sea Grant, at (218) 726-8106.
CONFERENCE SPONSORS: The conference is hosted by the University of Minnesota
Sea Grant Program. Co-sponsors are: California Sea Grant College System,
Canadian Coast Guard, Canadian Ship Owners Association, Canada's Department of
Fisheries and Oceans, Electric Power Research Institute, Lake Carriers'
Association, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, National Park Service,
Northern States Power Company, Ontario Hydro, Seaway Port Authority of Duluth,
Tennessee Valley Authority Technology Advancement, Upper Mississippi River
Conservation Committee, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Bureau of
Reclamation, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.