SAN ANTONIO (KTSA News) – Visitors taking in the sites in San Antonio this week will be disappointed that a section of the River Walk is nothing but a muddy mess.
A portion of the River Walk between Josephine Street and Nueva Street is being drained today through Thursday for cleaning and maintenance.
While city crews shoveling the muddy bottom are removing plastic cups, silverware, jewelry, cell phones, chairs, and perhaps even e-scooters, biologists with the San Antonio River Authority are removing non-native invasive species.
“We want to make sure that the San Antonio River is as clean and safe and enjoyable as it can be,” said Steven Schauer, SARA’s Director of Government and Public Affairs. “Part of that is a healthy balance of habitat and species that belong here as opposed to those that are invasive and don’t belong here.”
They’re removing suckermouth catfish and tilapia, in addition to apple snails, which are native to South America.
“It can grow as long as six inches or about the size of your fist, if you can imagine that,” said Schauer.
He told KTSA News that apple snails are often found in aquariums.
“The odds are, they found their way into the San Antonio River because someone decided they didn’t want their home aquarium anymore and they decided to dump the contents into the river,” said Schauer. “Please don’t do that.”
SARA crews are relocating native species until the cleaning is complete and the water levels are back to normal in that section of the River Walk.