Alberta Parks Home

Aquatic Invasive Species

What is an Aquatic Invasive Species?

It's a non-native species or disease that threatens the:

Why are Aquatic Invasive Species a problem?

Aquatic Invasive Species are a threat to the economy; especially agriculture, tourism and recreation. They destroy our natural lake ecosystems and fisheries. Managing the impacts of these species and diseases could cost millions of dollars each year.

The species of greatest concern in Alberta currently are two mussels and one plant.

AIS - Species

Does Alberta have Quagga or Zebra Mussels?

Not yet, and let's keep it that way. Prevention is the most effective way to manage AIS. We currently have some infestations of lower risk aquatic invasive species that are being managed locally - purple loosestrife for example.

Whirling Disease in Alberta

Whirling disease is present in Alberta. Containment and prevention are the best response as there is no treatment for this disease.

Myxobolus cerebralis is the parasite that affects salmonid fishes, such as trout, salmon and whitefish. Clinical symptoms of whirling disease include a blackened tail, sloped head, crooked tail and an abnormal whirl or tail-chasing behaviour. Infection by this parasite can lead to fish mortality.

How are Aquatic Invasive Species and Whirling Disease spread?

How can I prevent the spread of Aquatic Invasive Species and Whirling Disease?

What is Alberta Parks doing to address this issue?  

Contacts to report something suspicious on your boat or equipment, or for more information

Additional Resources

Updated: May 10, 2018