Cold killed half of the mudsnails in Capitol Lake

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OLYMPIA — It looks like the cold snap early this month killed about half the New Zealand mudsnails that have invaded Capitol Lake in Olympia.

State officials were hoping the sub-freezing weather would help control the population of tiny snails that infest the lake.

The Olympian reports that a 50 percent kill was about what scientists expected.

The state Department of Enterprise Services has been trying to kill off the snails since they were detected in 2009. Each of the snails is about the size of a grain of rice. They are considered a problem because they interfere with the food chain.