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Selfish Shellfish hits the Thames

SallyB2
By SallyB2 Last edited 110 months ago
Selfish Shellfish hits the Thames
1101.mussel.jpg

There’s a new kid in the dock, and he’s mean. Meet the Zebra Mussel: 2” of pushy and persistent potential pollutant. This striped but somewhat scrawny mollusc is musselling in on the action at watery outlets up and down the London section of the Thames. The thalassic thug is perhaps yet another example of the new breed of capitalist Russians which are moving in on London.

Londonist was actually jolly excited when she noticed this story - a new moules pool…break out the wine, cream and garlic, bring on the parsley. But this little bugger is so puny that even the most dedicated mussel muncher would think twice. More worryingly, because he ‘filters’ so much water through his avaricious calciferous ‘mouth’, he blots up pretty much all the rubbish Old Father Thames has to throw at him. And he clings to everything – boats, docks, tourist flip-flops, drain outlets, other mussels – clogging and cluttering and generally being a pain in the aft regions. He is even on the FBI’s most wanted fwish list as an unwelcome predator in the US (hence the photo above). The only good thing about the Zebra Mussel is the fact that lots of things like to eat it - sea bass and crayfish, for example – so the Thames could be turned into one giant fish farm. Hmm. Not.

This isn’t the first time the Thames has been thus invaded – the Chinese mitten crab hit news headlines a few years ago for similar reasons – but at least that multi-limbed critter is edible.

No sirree – this is one immigrant the advent of which we really shouldn’t welcome.

Piccie courtesy of Dale Miller’s flickr photo stream.

Last Updated 11 January 2008

jonathanblack

Oh no! I remember the zebra mussel invasion of the Great Lakes when I was a kid. It wasn't pretty. They're RELENTLESS. And still there, if I'm not mistaken.