By: Christine Souders
Rock Island is preparing for the new boat dock at Schiewbert Park, and a group of experts are diving into the Mississippi to move mussels out of harms' way.
Captain Don Helm and his crew spent the day relocating mussels living where a new boat dock is supposed to be built on Rock Island's river front.
Jugs floating on the waters' surface represent where the piers are going in for the new dock, and where a diver is searching below for mussels to gather up.
"We're supposed to remove the mussels from a 5 foot diameter. We're actually going outside of that enough to be certain that we've covered it all," said Don Helm.
Once the bottom dwellers are retrieved, captain don helm and his daughter Susan identifies and documents the species.
"I'm going to measure each one, and then mark it so that when we release them, if we go back later to monitor what they're survival is, I can tell which ones we moved in to the area," said Helm
But it's not just about finding and picking them up, mussel safety is also a prime concern.
"Just not a good idea to hold on to them too long, 3 hours is the limit."
The mussels are kept in a net on the side of the boat, and let go 100 feet upstream where they will make their new home.
We should see the actual building of the boat dock in the next month.
City leaders expect it to be finished by November 1st.