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Faucet snail forces boat harbor closure

LAKE WINNIBIGOSHISH - The Chippewa National Forest announced the seasonal closure of the West Winnie Forest Service Campground boat harbor due to an exotic species of snail found at the access.

An alternate boat access near the site will be opened, and the U.S. Forest Service has moved the dock to the lakeside to accommodate boaters. People using the dock should keep an eye on the weather as the dock is unprotected by the harbor, according to a news release issued Tuesday by the Chippewa National Forest.

The exotic Faucet Snail has been found in large numbers at the West Winnie launch site, where vegetation is thick and provides habitat for this small invasive species. Because of the vegetation, it is easy for boats and props to pick up the faucet snails and transport them to other lakes.

Faucet snails have been the cause of large waterfowl die-off in past years on Lake Winnie. Boaters in the West Winnie area are asked to carefully inspect their boats and trailers for faucet snails.

For more information, call the Blackduck Ranger District at (218) 835-4291 or check the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources webpage for detailed information on the faucet snail threat.