The Zebra Mussel conservation dogs are back


Fritch, Texas – Darby and her friends return to Lake Meredith on Thursday, June 10, 2021 through Sunday, June 13, 2021. If you haven’t met Darby yet, she is a working conservation dog with a job detecting non-native Zebra Mussels on watercraft. Darby has been diagnosed with a tumor on her brain stem. She has taken radiation treatments and is doing well. The experts think she will live much longer to continue making a difference in the world and at Lake Meredith National Recreation Area.

Her owner is Laura Speightl, who is a contract worker with WD4C, Working Dogs for Conservation. Laura trained her first dog when she was 8 years old and has been training dogs for WD4C for 7 seven years. Laura will bring her three dogs to Lake Meredith this week. Raine, Darby, and Tony will be working together on the inspection days to detect Zebra Mussels.

Lake Meredith has escaped the infestation of Zebra Mussels to date and none were found during the last inspection earlier this year. Zebra Mussels will accumulate quickly on every solid object in and around a lake and eventually clog up piping infrastructure.

This invasive species will eventually obstruct the delivery of drinking water to communities. Zebra Mussels first started infesting the Great Lakes area in the Midwest and have made their way south to parts of Texas and Oklahoma.

These brave canine crusaders will visit Lake Meredith several times this year and continue to keep the lake Zebra Mussels free. If you are a boat owner, please recreate responsibly by cleaning, draining, and drying your boat after every use. Keep Zebra Mussels out of Lake Meredith National Recreation Area, the lake we all love.