Ptychobranchus fasciolaris - (Rafinesque, 1820)
Kidneyshell
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Ptychobranchus fasciolaris (Rafinesque, 1820) (TSN 80158)
French Common Names: ptychobranche réniforme
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.109882
Element Code: IMBIV38010
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Invertebrates - Mollusks - Freshwater Mussels
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Mollusca Bivalvia Unionoida Unionidae Ptychobranchus
Genus Size: B - Very small genus (2-5 species)
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Turgeon, D.D., J.F. Quinn, Jr., A.E. Bogan, E.V. Coan, F.G. Hochberg, W.G. Lyons, P.M. Mikkelsen, R.J. Neves, C.F.E. Roper, G. Rosenberg, B. Roth, A. Scheltema, F.G. Thompson, M. Vecchione, and J.D. Williams. 1998. Common and scientific names of aquatic invertebrates from the United States and Canada: Mollusks. 2nd Edition. American Fisheries Society Special Publication 26, Bethesda, Maryland: 526 pp.
Concept Reference Code: B98TUR01EHUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Ptychobranchus fasciolaris
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G4G5
Global Status Last Reviewed: 14May2009
Global Status Last Changed: 25Nov1996
Rounded Global Status: G4 - Apparently Secure
Reasons: This species has a very wide range and is found throughout Mississippi River system, including the Ohio, Tennessee, and Cumberland Rivers, but has declined somewhat in some places; although many sites still report large populations. In particular, significant decline have occurred in Canada while U.S. occurrences have been more stable.
Nation: United States
National Status: N4N5 (16Jul1998)
Nation: Canada
National Status: N1 (01Aug2017)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Alabama (S2), Georgia (S1), Illinois (S1), Indiana (S2), Kentucky (S4S5), Michigan (S2), Mississippi (S1), New York (S2), North Carolina (SX), Ohio (S3), Pennsylvania (S4), Tennessee (S4S5), Virginia (S4), West Virginia (S3)
Canada Ontario (S1)

Other Statuses

Canadian Species at Risk Act (SARA) Schedule 1/Annexe 1 Status: E (12Jan2005)
Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC): Endangered (03May2013)
Comments on COSEWIC: By 2001, this species had been lost from about 70% of its historical range in Canada due to the impacts of the Zebra Mussel and habitat loss from land use practices. It is now restricted to the East Sydenham and Ausable rivers, Lake St. Clair delta, and Medway Creek of the Thames River. The population in Lake St. Clair is close to extirpation. Both Ausable and East Sydenham river populations appear to be reproducing, but populations in Medway Creek and Lake St. Clair are not reproducing. Populations are threatened by pollution from agriculture, urban and road runoff sources, and invasive species (dreissenids and Round Goby).
Designated Endangered in May 2003. Status re-examined and confirmed in May 2013.

IUCN Red List Category: LC - Least concern
American Fisheries Society Status: Currently Stable (01Jan1993)

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent: 20,000-200,000 square km (about 8000-80,000 square miles)
Range Extent Comments: The kidneyshell was once generally distributed throughout the Ohio, Tennessee, and Cumberland River systems. In the Great Lakes drainage, it was found in Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair and some of their tributaries, the Detroit River, the Niagara River and some of its tributaries, and at least one tributary to lower Lake Huron. It was historically known from Alabama, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and Ontario. In Canada, it is only known from southern Ontario (COSEWIC, 2003). Recently this species has been confirmed to be likely extirpated from the main channel of the Detroit River between Lake St. Clair and Lake Erie, Michigan/Ontario; due to zebra mussel invasion (Schloesser et al., 2006).

Area of Occupancy: 2,501 to >12,500 4-km2 grid cells
Area of Occupancy Comments:  

Number of Occurrences: 81 to >300
Number of Occurrences Comments: It is widespread and sporadic in Ohio but can be locally abundant (Watters, 1992; 1995; Lyons et al., 2007; Watters et al., 2009). It is also quite abundant in the Tippicanoe (Cummings and Berlocher, 1990) and Little Blue rivers in Indiana (K. Cummings, Illinois Natural History Survey, pers. comm. August 2001) and East Fork White (Harmon, 1992), and St. Joseph (Pryor, 2005). This species is also known from the Pine and Belle (Badra and Goforth, 2003) and Clinton River drainage in Michigan (Strayer, 1980; Trdan and Hoeh, 1993). Specimens from the Black River (St. Clair drainage), Michigan, were relocated to the Detroit River in 1992 (Trdan and Hoeh, 1993). In Mississippi, it occurs in the Tennessee River drainage only (Jones et al., 2005). In Tennessee, it occurs throughout the Tennessee and Cumberland river systems, mostly in medium-sized rivers such as the upper Clinch and Powell, the Big South Fork, Cumberland, Emory, Nolichucky, Elk, Duck, Harpeth, and Stones (Parmalee and Bogan, 1998). In Alabama, it is rare and restricted to the Tennessee River system; extant in the tailwaters of Wilson and Guntersville dams, Paint Rock River system and a short reach of Bear Creek in Colbert Co. (Ahlstedt, 1996; Mirarchi et al., 2004; Williams et al., 2008). It has been collected in Kentucky in the South Fork Kentucky (Evans, 2008), Red (Clark, 1988), Middle Green (Gordon, 1991) and Barren Rivers (Cochran and Layzer, 1993), but is generally distributed in the Tennessee River eastward (Cicerello and Schuster, 2003). In Michigan, it is in many drainages in the lower peninsula of the state, and can be locally abundant (P. Badra, MI NHP, pers. comm. September 2001). In New York, the Kidneyshell is abundant in streams in the Allegheny River basin and is also found in a few places in the Lake Erie-Niagara River basins (Strayer and Jirka, 1997). It is also found in the Ohio River drainage and the Allegheny and Monongahela River drainages in Pennsylvania (A. Shiels, Pennsylvania Nongame and Endangered Species Unit, pers. comm. September 2001). In West Virginia, it is found throughout the interior basin and can be quite common at some sites (J. Clayton, WV DNR, pers. comm. August 2001; Morris and Taylor, 1992). In Virginia, the species is found at sites throughout the Clinch River (Jones et al., 2001; S. Carter-Lovejoy, VA DCR, pers. comm. July 2001) and Copper Creek (Hanlon et al., 2009). Jones and Neves (2007) summarize distribution in the upper North Fork Holston River (Smyth and Bland Cos., Virginia) as rkm 135.8 to 164.5. In Alabama, it is very rare in the Tennessee River, but is encountered regularly in two of its tributaries, Bear Creek and Paint Rock River (J. Garner, AL DFW, pers. comm. October 2001). A few fresh shells were recently collected from the portion of Bear Creek that runs though Mississippi; otherwise, the species is very rare in that state (R. Jones, Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks, pers. comm. October 2001). According to Cummings and Mayer (1997), the Kidneyshell has been lost from three of five river systems where it once occurred in eastern Illinois. It is now restricted to the Embarras and Vermilion rivers, where it is sporadic." A single specimen was recently collected in the Middle Fork North Branch Vermillion River in Illinois (Szafoni et al., 2000). It is in the Muscatatuck in Indiana (Harmon, 1989). Reports for Oklahoma and Kansas (Branson, 1966a; Isely, 1924) are erroneous (Caryn Vaughn, pers. comm., 2007). In Canada, it is extant only in the Sydenham and Ausable rivers and Lake St. Clair (COSEWIC, 2003; Metcalfe-Smith et al., 2003; Metcalfe-Smith and Cudmore-Vokey, 2004). This species was recetnly collected from 4 of 38 sites surveyed (2 as dead shells only) in the Tonawanda Creek basin (Niagara River drainage) in western New York (Marangelo and Strayer, 2000).

Population Size: >1,000,000 individuals
Population Size Comments: Smith and Crabtree (2010) found this species at 9 of 32 sites (9 with recruitment) along the entire length of Pennsylvania's French Creek; one of the most abundant species in French Creek.

Number of Occurrences with Good Viability/Integrity: Some to many (13-125)
Viability/Integrity Comments: It is exceptionally abundant in the upper Clinton River, MI, comprising 30-40% of the community (COSEWIC, 2003). It also appears to be maintaining viable local populations in the upper Clinch River, Hancock Co., Tennessee (Parmalee and Bogan, 1998). It is abundant in Fish Creek and Big and Little Darby Creeks in Ohio (Watters et al., 2009).

Overall Threat Impact: High
Overall Threat Impact Comments: Zebra mussels have nearly destroyed native freshwater mussel communities in the Great Lakes. Approximately 60% of sites where the Kidneyshell was found historically are now infested with zebra mussels. Populations in the Grand and Thames rivers were likely extirpated due to the combined effects of sewage pollution and agricultural impacts. The two remaining populations in Canada, located in the East Sydenham and Ausable rivers, are threatened by factors related to intensive agriculture, especially heavy loadings of silt and nutrients. Muskrats are also a potential limiting factor, since the Kidneyshell is one of the mussel species on which they prey (COSEWIC, 2003).

Short-term Trend: Decline of 10-30%
Short-term Trend Comments: Recent information suggests that the current distribution and abundance of the Kidneyshell in the U.S. remains much the same as it was historically. Although still somewhat widespread in Tennessee, the species has experienced reduced numbers and range (Parmalee and Bogan, 1998). Significant declines and some extirpations have occurred in Canada (COSEWIC, 2003), including historical occurrences in the Grand, Thames, Niagara, and Detoit Rivers, and Lake Erie (Metcalfe-Smith and Cudmore-Vokey, 2004). It has been extirpated from its former occurrence in the French Broad River, in North Carolina (Bogan, 2002).

Long-term Trend: Decline of <30% to increase of 25%
Long-term Trend Comments: Recent information suggests that the current distribution and abundance of the Kidneyshell in the U.S. remains much the same as it was historically. Significant declines and some extirpations have occurred in Canada (COSEWIC, 2003), including the Thames River where it once occurred in the Chatham area (Cudmore et al., 2004)..

Intrinsic Vulnerability: Not intrinsically vulnerable

Environmental Specificity: Broad. Generalist or community with all key requirements common.
Environmental Specificity Comments: The species is tolerant of a variety of habitat conditions, although rivers with moderately strong current and a substrate of coarse gravel and sand provide the most suitable one. It may be found at depths of less than three feet up to those as great as 18 to 24 feet om ;arge rovers (reservoirs) such as the Tennessee and the Cumberland (Parmalee and Bogan, 1998).

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Inventory Needs: Inventory fairly sufficient.

Protection Needs: May need protection in Canada (see COSEWIC, 2003).

Distribution
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Global Range: (20,000-200,000 square km (about 8000-80,000 square miles)) The kidneyshell was once generally distributed throughout the Ohio, Tennessee, and Cumberland River systems. In the Great Lakes drainage, it was found in Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair and some of their tributaries, the Detroit River, the Niagara River and some of its tributaries, and at least one tributary to lower Lake Huron. It was historically known from Alabama, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and Ontario. In Canada, it is only known from southern Ontario (COSEWIC, 2003). Recently this species has been confirmed to be likely extirpated from the main channel of the Detroit River between Lake St. Clair and Lake Erie, Michigan/Ontario; due to zebra mussel invasion (Schloesser et al., 2006).

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map
Endemism: occurs (regularly, as a native taxon) in multiple nations

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AL, GA, IL, IN, KY, MI, MS, NCextirpated, NY, OH, PA, TN, VA, WV
Canada ON

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
AL Colbert (01033), Franklin (01059)*, Jackson (01071), Lauderdale (01077), Limestone (01083)*, Madison (01089), Marshall (01095), Morgan (01103)*
GA Catoosa (13047)
IL Clay (17025), Coles (17029), Douglas (17041), Vermilion (17183)
IN Adams (18001), Allen (18003), Bartholomew (18005), Boone (18011), Carroll (18015), Cass (18017), Clinton (18023), Crawford (18025), Daviess (18027), De Kalb (18033), Dearborn (18029), Decatur (18031), Delaware (18035), Dubois (18037), Fayette (18041)*, Fountain (18045), Franklin (18047)*, Fulton (18049), Gibson (18051)*, Grant (18053), Greene (18055), Hamilton (18057), Hancock (18059), Harrison (18061), Hendricks (18063)*, Henry (18065), Howard (18067), Huntington (18069), Jackson (18071), Jay (18075), Jefferson (18077), Jennings (18079), Johnson (18081), Knox (18083), Kosciusko (18085), Lawrence (18093), Madison (18095), Marion (18097), Marshall (18099), Martin (18101), Miami (18103), Montgomery (18107), Morgan (18109), Ohio (18115), Owen (18119), Parke (18121), Pike (18125)*, Posey (18129), Pulaski (18131), Putnam (18133), Randolph (18135), Ripley (18137), Rush (18139), Shelby (18145), Starke (18149), Steuben (18151), Sullivan (18153)*, Tippecanoe (18157), Tipton (18159)*, Union (18161)*, Vermillion (18165), Vigo (18167), Wabash (18169), Warren (18171), Washington (18175), Wayne (18177)*, Wells (18179)*, White (18181), Whitley (18183)
MI Barry (26015), Berrien (26021)*, Branch (26023)*, Cheboygan (26031)*, Clinton (26037), Gratiot (26057), Hillsdale (26059)*, Lenawee (26091)*, Livingston (26093), Macomb (26099), Midland (26111), Monroe (26115)*, Montcalm (26117), Oakland (26125), Saginaw (26145), Sanilac (26151), Shiawassee (26155)*, St. Clair (26147), Tuscola (26157)*, Washtenaw (26161), Wayne (26163)
MS Tishomingo (28141)
NY Chautauqua (36013), Erie (36029), Niagara (36063)
OH Ashland (39005), Ashtabula (39007), Coshocton (39031), Delaware (39041), Fairfield (39045), Franklin (39049), Hancock (39063), Holmes (39075), Knox (39083), Lake (39085), Logan (39091), Madison (39097), Ottawa (39123), Pickaway (39129), Union (39159), Williams (39171)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
04 St. Joseph (04050001)+*, Upper Grand (04050004)+, Thornapple (04050007)+, Black (04070005)+*, Tittabawassee (04080201)+*, Pine (04080202)+, Shiawassee (04080203)+, Cass (04080205)+*, St. Clair (04090001)+, Lake St. Clair (04090002)+, Clinton (04090003)+, Detroit (04090004)+, Huron (04090005)+, Ottawa-Stony (04100001)+*, Raisin (04100002)+*, St. Joseph (04100003)+, St. Marys (04100004)+, Upper Maumee (04100005)+*, Blanchard (04100008)+, Cedar-Portage (04100010)+, Grand (04110004)+, Chautauqua-Conneaut (04120101)+, Buffalo-Eighteenmile (04120103)+, Niagara (04120104)+
05 Conewango (05010002)+, French (05010004)+, Mohican (05040002)+, Walhonding (05040003)+, Upper Scioto (05060001)+, Lower Scioto (05060002)+, Upper Great Miami (05080001)+, Whitewater (05080003)+*, Middle Ohio-Laughery (05090203)+, Upper Wabash (05120101)+, Salamonie (05120102)+, Mississinewa (05120103)+, Eel (05120104)+, Middle Wabash-Deer (05120105)+, Tippecanoe (05120106)+, Wildcat (05120107)+, Middle Wabash-Little Vermilion (05120108)+, Vermilion (05120109)+, Sugar (05120110)+, Middle Wabash-Busseron (05120111)+, Embarras (05120112)+, Lower Wabash (05120113)+, Little Wabash (05120114)+, Upper White (05120201)+, Lower White (05120202)+, Eel (05120203)+, Driftwood (05120204)+, Flatrock-Haw (05120205)+, Upper East Fork White (05120206)+, Muscatatuck (05120207)+, Lower East Fork White (05120208)+, Blue-Sinking (05140104)+
06 Middle Tennessee-Chickamauga (06020001)+, Guntersville Lake (06030001)+*, Wheeler Lake (06030002)+, Pickwick Lake (06030005)+, Bear (06030006)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed (based on multiple information sources) Help
Ecology & Life History
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General Description: From COSEWIC (2003): The Kidneyshell is a medium to large freshwater mussel that is readily distinguished by its elongate, elliptical shell and yellowish-brown periostracum with wide, interrupted green rays that look like squarish spots. The following description of the species was adapted from Clarke (1981), Strayer and Jirka (1997) and Parmalee and Bogan (1998). The shell is solid, heavy and compressed, and may have a humped shape in old individuals. The anterior end is rounded and the posterior end is bluntly pointed. Beak sculpture is poorly developed, consisting of several fine, indistinct wavy ridges. The surface of the shell (periostracum) ranges in colour from yellowish to yellowish-green, yellowish-brown, or medium brown, with generally distributed broad, interrupted green rays; the shells of old specimens may be a dark chestnut brown and rayless. The periostracum is unsculptured except for coarse growth rests and a roughened posterior slope. The nacre is generally white or bluish white, but may be pinkish in young specimens. The hinge teeth are heavy. The left valve has two low, thick, serrated triangular pseudocardinal teeth and two lateral teeth that are short, nearly straight, and usually widely separated. The right valve has one somewhat compressed and pyramidal elevated tooth and one wide, elongated and serrated lateral tooth. The lateral teeth are almost pendulous distally, which is a good distinguishing feature. The interdentum is wide and the beak cavity is shallow. Females have a conspicuous groove on the inside of the shell that runs diagonally from the beak cavity towards the posterioventral end; this groove corresponds to the marsupium. Old, rayless Kidneyshells may be mistaken for Elliptio dilatata (the spike) which, however, is more elongate, has less massive lateral teeth (that are not pendulous), heavy beak sculpture, and (commonly) purple nacre.


Reproduction Comments: From COSEWIC (2003): The Kidneyshell, like most freshwater mussels, is considered to be dioecious, although it may be occasionally hermaphroditic. Hermaphroditism affords benefits when population densities are low; under such conditions, females may switch to self-fertilization to ensure that recruitment continues. There are no sexual differences in the shell of P. fasciolaris, except that males are slightly more compressed than females - a feature that cannot be used with any certainty to separate the sexes. The lifespan of P. fasciolaris is not known, but members of the Subfamily Lampsilinae generally grow more rapidly and have shorter life spans than members of the Ambleminae, which can live for over 40 years. For comparison, life spans of three other COSEWIC-listed lampsilines are: 10-20 years for L. fasciola, more than 15 years for Epioblasma torulosa rangiana, and up to 11 years for V. fabalis. Ptychobranchus fasciolaris is a long-term brooder (bradytictic). The breeding season begins in August, and glochidia are discharged the following June to perhaps as late as August. Glochidia are small, purse-shaped, without hooks, and measure 190 µm in height and 170 µm in length. The lack of hooks suggests that they are gill parasites. Members of the genus Ptychobranchus produce conglutinates, which are specialized packets of glochidia bound in a cellular or mucoidal matrix. P. fasciolaris produces two types of conglutinates; the major type resembles fish fry, complete with pigmentation resembling eyes and lateral lines, and the minor type is brightly coloured and mimics insect larvae such as simuliids or chironomids. The host is infected when it bites into the conglutinate, which ruptures and releases the glochidia in close proximity to the fishs gills. The host fish(es) for P. fasciolaris in the Sydenham and Ausable rivers are unknown, but Watters (1999) notes that the hosts for three other species of Ptychobranchus have all been identified as species of Percidae (darters) and Cottidae (sculpins). New host fish confirmation from Watters et al. (2005): brook stickleback (Culaea inconstans). Watters et al. (2009) confirmed host ransformation on fantail darter- Etheostoma flabellare (6%) and rainbow darter- Etheostoma caeruleum.
Habitat Type: Freshwater
Non-Migrant: N
Locally Migrant: N
Long Distance Migrant: N
Mobility and Migration Comments: From COSEWIC (2003): In the adult form, freshwater mussels are basically sessile; movement is limited to a few metres of the lake or river bottom. The only time that significant dispersal can take place is during the parasitic phase. Infected host fishes can transport the larval unionids into new habitats, and can replenish depleted populations with new individuals. Dispersal is particularly important for genetic exchange between populations. Dispersal is likely to be a slow process for mussels like the Kidneyshell, which use resident fishes with limited home ranges as their hosts.

Riverine Habitat(s): BIG RIVER, CREEK, High gradient, MEDIUM RIVER, Moderate gradient, Riffle
Lacustrine Habitat(s): Deep water, Shallow water
Habitat Comments: Ptychobranchus fasciolaris is most commonly found in small (6-16 m wide) to medium-sized (15-20 m wide) rivers, and is rarely found in large rivers (>30-50 m wide); it also occurs in Lake Erie, Lake St. Clair and Lake Chautauqua, where it attains a much smaller size. It has also been found in shallow (<1 m) sections of impoundments that still have some moving water. It is usually absent from headwater creeks less than 3 m wide. It favors riffle areas with substrates of firmly-packed coarse gravel and sand and moderate to swift flows, and has an aversion to ponded or backwater conditions (COSEWIC, 2003). The species is tolerant of a variety of habitat conditions, although rivers with moderately strong current and a substrate of coarse gravel and sand provide the most suitable one. It may be found at depths of less than three feet up to those as great as 18 to 24 feet om ;arge rovers (reservoirs) such as the Tennessee and the Cumberland (Parmalee and Bogan, 1998).
Adult Food Habits: Planktivore
Food Comments: From COSEWIC (2003): Primary food sources are bacteria, algae, particles of organic detritus, and some protozoans. Food availability is not normally a limiting factor, although it could be in the presence of high densities of zebra mussels, which are extremely efficient filter-feeders. During the parasitic larval stage, glochidia feed on the body fluids of the host.

Length: 15 centimeters
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary
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Biological Research Needs: Some life history data lacking.
Population/Occurrence Delineation
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Group Name: Freshwater Mussels

Use Class: Not applicable
Minimum Criteria for an Occurrence: Occurrences are based on some evidence of historical or current presence of single or multiple specimens, including live specimens or recently dead shells (i.e., soft tissue still attached and/or nacre still glossy and iridescent without signs of external weathering or staining), at a given location with potentially recurring existence. Weathered shells constitute a historic occurrence. Evidence is derived from reliable published observation or collection data; unpublished, though documented (i.e. government or agency reports, web sites, etc.) observation or collection data; or museum specimen information.
Mapping Guidance: Based on the separation distances outlined herein, for freshwater mussels in STANDING WATER (or backwater areas of flowing water such as oxbows and sloughs), all standing water bodies with either (1) greater than 2 km linear distance of unsuitable habitat between (i.e. lotic connections), or (2) more than 10 km of apparently unoccupied though suitable habitat (including lentic shoreline, linear distance across water bodies, and lentic water bodies with proper lotic connections), are considered separate element occurrences. Only the largest standing water bodies (with 20 km linear shoreline or greater) may have greater than one element occurrence within each. Multiple collection or observation locations in one lake, for example, would only constitute multiple occurrences in the largest lakes, and only then if there was some likelihood that unsurveyed areas between collections did not contain the element.

For freshwater mussels in FLOWING WATER conditions, occurrences are separated by a distance of more than 2 stream km of unsuitable habitat, or a distance of more than 10 stream km of apparently unoccupied though suitable habitat. Standing water between occurrences is considered suitable habitat when calculating separation distance for flowing water mussel species unless dispersal barriers (see Separation Barriers) are in place.

Several mussel species in North America occur in both standing and flowing water (see Specs Notes). Calculation of separation distance and determination of separation barriers for these taxa should take into account the environment in which the element was collected. Juvenile mussels do not follow this pattern and juveniles are typically missed by most standard sampling methods (Hastie and Cosgrove, 2002; Neves and Widlak, 1987), therefore juvenile movement is not considered when calculating separation distance.

Separation Barriers: Separation barriers within standing water bodies are based solely on separation distance (see Separation Distance-suitable, below). Separation barriers between standing water bodies and within flowing water systems include lack of lotic connections, natural barriers such as upland habitat, absence of appropriate species specific fish hosts, water depth greater than 10 meters (Cvancara, 1972; Moyle and Bacon, 1969) or anthropogenic barriers to water flow such as dams or other impoundments and high waterfalls.
Separation Distance for Unsuitable Habitat: 2 km
Separation Distance for Suitable Habitat: 10 km
Alternate Separation Procedure: None
Separation Justification: Adult freshwater mussels are largely sedentary spending their entire lives very near to the place where they first successfully settled (Coker et al., 1921; Watters, 1992). Strayer (1999) demonstrated in field trials that mussels in streams occur chiefly in flow refuges, or relatively stable areas that displayed little movement of particles during flood events. Flow refuges conceivably allow relatively immobile mussels to remain in the same general location throughout their entire lives. Movement occurs with the impetus of some stimulus (nearby water disturbance, physical removal from the water such as during collection, exposure conditions during low water, seasonal temperature change or associated diurnal cycles) and during spawning. Movement is confined to either vertical movement burrowing deeper into sediments though rarely completely beneath the surface, or horizontal movement in a distinct path often away from the area of stimulus. Vertical movement is generally seasonal with rapid descent into the sediment in autumn and gradual reappearance at the surface during spring (Amyot and Downing, 1991; 1997). Horizontal movement is generally on the order of a few meters at most and is associated with day length and during times of spawning (Amyot and Downing, 1997). Such locomotion plays little, if any, part in the distribution of freshwater mussels as these limited movements are not dispersal mechanisms. Dispersal patterns are largely speculative but have been attributed to stream size and surface geology (Strayer, 1983; Strayer and Ralley, 1993; van der Schalie, 1938), utilization of flow refuges during flood stages (Strayer, 1999), and patterns of host fish distribution during spawning periods (Haag and Warren, 1998; Watters, 1992). Lee and DeAngelis (1997) modeled the dispersal of freshwater into unoccupied habitats as a traveling wave front with a velocity ranging from 0.87 to 2.47 km/year (depending on mussel life span) with increase in glochidial attachment rate to fish having no effect on wave velocity.

Nearly all mussels require a host or hosts during the parasitic larval portion of their life cycle. Hosts are usually fish, but a few exceptional species utilize amphibians as hosts (Van Snik Gray et al., 2002; Howard, 1915) or may metamorphose without a host (Allen, 1924; Barfield et al., 1998; Lefevre and Curtis, 1911; 1912). Haag and Warren (1998) found that densities of host generalist mussels (using a variety of hosts from many different families) and displaying host specialists (using a small number of hosts usually in the same family but mussel females have behavioral modifications to attract hosts to the gravid female) were independent of the densities of their hosts. Densities of non-displaying host specialist mussels (using a small number of hosts usually in the same family but without host-attracting behavior) were correlated positively with densities of their hosts. Upstream dispersal of host fish for non-displaying host specialist mussels could, theoretically, transport mussel larvae (glochidia) over long distances through unsuitable habitat, but it is unlikely that this occurs very often. D. Strayer (personal communication) suggested a distance of at least 10 km, but a greater distance between occurrences may be necessary to constitute genetic separation of populations. As such, separation distance is based on a set, though arbitrary, distance between two known points of occurrence.

Date: 18Oct2004
Author: Cordeiro, J.
Notes: Contact Jay Cordeiro (jay_cordeiro@natureserve.org) for a complete list of freshwater mussel taxa sorted by flow regime.
Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
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Authors/Contributors
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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 14May2009
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Cordeiro, J.
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 24May2007
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): Cordeiro, J.

Zoological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
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  • Bogan, A.E. 2002. Workbook and key to the freshwater bivalves of North Carolina. North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences: Raleigh, North Carolina. 101 pp.

  • Branson, B.A. 1966a. A partial biological survey of the Spring River drainage in Kansas, Oklahoma and Missouri. Part I, collecting sites, basic limnological data, and mollusks. Transactions of the Kansas Academy of Science 69(3/4): 242-293.

  • Branson, B.A. 1966b. Alasmidonta marginata and Ptychobranchus fasciolaris in Kansas. The Nautilus 80:21-24.

  • Branson, B.A. 1984. The mussels (Unionacea: Bivalvia) of Oklahoma- Part 3: Lampsilini. Proceedings of the Oklahoma Academy of Science, 64: 20-36.

  • Burch, J.B. 1975. Freshwater unionacean clams (mollusca: pelecypoda) of North America. Malcological Publications. Hamburg, Michigan. 204 pp.

  • COSSARO. 2013. Ontario Species at Risk Evaluation Report for Kidneyshell (Ptychobranchus fasciolaris). June 2013 (final). 14pp.

  • Clark, C.F. 1988. Some fresh-water mussels from the Red River drainage, Kentucky. Malacology Data Net, 2(3/4): 100-104.

  • Clarke, A.H. 1981a. The Freshwater Molluscs of Canada. National Museum of Natural Sciences, National Museums of Canada, D.W. Friesen and Sons, Ltd.: Ottawa, Canada. 446 pp.

  • Cochran, T.G. II and J.B. Layzer. 1993. Effects of commercial harvest on unionid habitat use in the Green and Barren Rivers, Kentucky. Pages 61-65 in K.S. Cummings, A.C. Buchanan, and L.M. Koch (eds.) Conservation and Management of Freshwater Mussels: Proceedings of a UMRCC Symposium, 12-14 October, 1992, St. Louis, Missouri. Upper Mississippi River Conservation Committee, Rock Island, Illinois. 189 pp.

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  • Cummings, K.S. and C.A. Mayer. 1997. Distributional checklist and status of Illinois freshwater mussels (Mollusca: Unionacea). Pages 129-145 in: K.S. Cummings, A.C. Buchanan, C.A. Mayer, and T.J. Naimo (eds.) Conservation and management of freshwater mussels II: initiatives for the future. Proceedings of a UMRCC Symposium, October 1995, St. Louis, Missouri. Upper Mississippi River Conservation Committee, Rock Island, Illinois.

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  • Cummings, Kevin S. et al. 1992. Survey of the Freshwater Mussels (Mollusca: Unionidae) of the Wabash River Drainage. Final Report. INHS Center for Biodiversity Tech. Rep. 1992 (1):210 pp.

  • Dextrase, A. J. 2003. COSSARO Candidate V, T, E Species Evaluation Form for Kidneyshell (Ptychobranchus fasciolaris). Committee on the Status of Species at Risk in Ontario (COSSARO), Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Peterborough, Ontario. Unpublished report.. 4 + appendices pp.

  • Ecological Specialists, Inc. 1996. Unionid Mussel Survey of the Blue River, Indiana. Prepared for The Nature Conservancy. 23 pp.

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  • Harmon, J.L. 1992. Naiades (Bivalvia: Unionidae) of Sugar Creek, east fork White River drainage, in central Indiana. Malacology Data Net 3(1-4):31-42.

  • Howard, A.D. 1915. Some exceptional cases of breeding among the Unionidae. The Nautilus 29:4-11.

  • Isely, F.B. 1924. The fresh water-mussel fauna of eastern Oklahoma. Proceedings of the Oklahoma Academy of Science, 4: 43-118.

  • Jones, J.W. and R.J. Neves. 2007. Freshwater mussel status: Upper North Fork Holston River, Virginia. Northeastern Naturalist, 14(3): 471-480.

  • Jones, R.L., W.T. Slack, and P.D. Hartfield. 2005. The freshwater mussels (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Unionidae) of Mississippi. Southeastern Naturalist, 4(1): 77-92.

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  • Lyons, M.S., R.A. Krebs, J.P. Holt, L.J. Rundo, and W. Zawiski. 2007. Assessing causes of change in the freshwater mussels (Bivalvia: Unionidae) in the Black River, Ohio. American Midland Naturalist, 158: 1-15.

  • Marangelo, P.J. and D.L. Strayer. 2000. The freshwater mussels of the Tonawanda Creek basin in western New York. Walkerana, 11(25): 97-106.

  • Metcalfe-Smith, J.L. and D.T. Zanatta. 2002. COSEWIC Status Report on Kidneyshell, Ptychobranchus fasciolaris (Rafinesque, 1820). Unpublished DRAFT prepared for the Committee On the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. 36 + appendices pp.

  • Mirarchi, R.E., J.T. Garner, M.F. Mettee, and P.E. O'Neil. 2004b. Alabama wildlife. Volume 2. Imperiled aquatic mollusks and fishes. University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. xii + 255 pp.

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  • Murray, H.D. and A.B. Leonard. 1962. Handbook of Unionid Mussels in Kansas. Museum of Natural History, Uni- versity of Kansas, Miscellaneous Publication, 28: 1-184.

  • Natural Resources Commission. 2014. Roster of Indiana Animals, Insects, and Plants That Are Extirpated, Endangered, Threatened or Rare. Information Bulletin #2 (Sixth Amendment. 20pp.

  • Parmalee, P.W. 1967. The fresh-water mussels of Illinois. Ill. State Mus., Popular Sci. Series Vol. VIII. 108pp.

  • Parmalee, P.W. and A.E. Bogan. 1998. The freshwater mussels of Tennessee. Univ. Tennessee Press, Knoxville.

  • Parmalee, P.W. and A.E. Bogan. 1998. The freshwater mussels of Tennessee. University of Tennessee Press, Knoxville, Tennesee. 328 pp.

  • Pryor, W.W. 2005. Distribution of the native freshwater mussels in the rivers of Allen County, Indiana. Report to the St. Joseph River Watershed Initiative, Fort Wayne, Indiana. 71 pp.

  • Schloesser, D.W., J.L. Metcalfe-Smith, W.P. Kovalak, G.D. Longton, and R.D. Smithee. 2006. Extirpation of freshwater mussels (Bivalvia: Unionidae) following the invasion of dreissenid mussels in an interconnecting river of the Laurentian Great Lakes. American Midland Naturalist, 155: 307-320.

  • Smith, J. 1999. Unionid Ranks. Email letter to D.A. Sutherland, dated September 27. 1 pp.

  • Smith, T.A. and D. Crabtree. 2010. Freshwater mussel (Unionidae: Bivalvia) distributions and densities in French Creek, Pennsylvania. Northeastern Naturalist 17(3):387-414.

  • Spoo, A. 2008. The Pearly Mussels of Pennsylvania. Coachwhip Publications: Landisville, Pennsylvania. 210 pp.

  • Strayer, D. 1980. The freshwater mussels (Bivalvia: Unionidae) of the Clinton River, Michigan, with comments on man's impact on the fauna, 1870-1978. The Nautilus 94(4):142-149.

  • Strayer, D. 1983. The effects of surface geology and stream size on freshwater mussel (Bivalvia, Unionidae) distribution in southeastern Michigan, U.S.A. Freshwater Biology 13:253-264.

  • Strayer, D.L. 1999a. Use of flow refuges by unionid mussels in rivers. Journal of the North American Benthological Society 18(4):468-476.

  • Strayer, D.L. and J. Ralley. 1993. Microhabitat use by an assemblage of stream-dwelling unionaceans (Bivalvia) including two rare species of Alasmidonta. Journal of the North American Benthological Society 12(3):247-258.

  • Strayer, David L. and K.J. Jirka. 1997. The Pearly Mussels (Bivalva: Unionoidea) of New York State. New York State Museum Memoir 26. The New York State Education Department.

  • Szafoni, R.E., K.S. Cummings, and C.A. Mayer. 2000. Freshwater mussels (Mollusca: Unionidae) of the Middle Branch, North Fork Vermillion River, Illinois, Indiana. Transactions of the Illinois State Academy of Sceince, 93(3): 229-237.

  • Turgeon, D.D., J.F. Quinn, Jr., A.E. Bogan, E.V. Coan, F.G. Hochberg, W.G. Lyons, P.M. Mikkelsen, R.J. Neves, C.F.E. Roper, G. Rosenberg, B. Roth, A. Scheltema, F.G. Thompson, M. Vecchione, and J.D. Williams. 1998. Common and scientific names of aquatic invertebrates from the United States and Canada: Mollusks. 2nd Edition. American Fisheries Society Special Publication 26, Bethesda, Maryland: 526 pp.

  • Van der Schalie, H. 1938a. The naiad fauna of the Huron River in southeastern Michigan. Miscellaneous Publication of the Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan 40:7-78.

  • Watters, G. Thomas. 1996. 1996 Survey of the Mussels of the Fish Creek Drainage. Final Report to the Indiana Chapter of The Nature Conservancy.

  • Watters, G.T. 1992a. Unionids, fishes, and the species-area curve. Journal of Biogeography 19:481-490.

  • Watters, G.T. 1992b. Distribution of the Unionidae in south central Ohio. Malacology Data Net 3(1-4):56-90.

  • Watters, G.T., T. Gibson, and B. Kelly. 2009a. Host identifications or confirmations. Ellipsaria 11(1):19.

  • Watters, G.T., T. Menker, S. Thomas, and K. Luehnl. 2005. Host identifications or confirmations. Ellipsaria, 7(2): 11-12.

  • Wendeln, K.L., J.R. Runkle, and G.T. Watters. 2009. The freshwater mussels (Unionidae) of Twin Creek, Southwest Ohio. Journal of Freshwater Ecology 24(3):451-460. DOI: 10.1080/02705060.2009.9664318

  • Williams, J. D., A. E. Bogan, and J. T Garner. 2008. Freshwater mussels of Alabama & the Mobile Basin in Georgia, Mississippi, & Tennessee. University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. 908 pages.

  • Williams, J. D., A. E.Bogan, R. S. Butler, K. S.Cummings, J. T. Garner, J. L. Harris, N. A. Johnson, and G. T. Watters. 2017. A revised list of the freshwater mussels (mollusca: bivalvia: unionida) of the United States and Canada. Freshwater Mollusk Biology and Conservation 20:33-58.

  • Williams, J.D., M.L. Warren, Jr., K.S. Cummings, J.L. Harris, and R.J. Neves. 1993b. Conservation status of freshwater mussels of the United States and Canada. Fisheries 18(9): 6-22.

  • Williams, James, Arthur Bogan, and Jeffrey Garner. 2008. Freshwater Mussels of Alabama and the Mobile Basin in Georgia, Mississippi, and Tennessee. University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa, AL. pp 908

References for Watershed Distribution Map
  • Ahlstedt, S.A. 1995-1996. Status survey for federally listed endangered freshwater mussel species in the Paint Rock River system, northeastern Alabama, U.S.A. Walkerana 8(19):63-80.

  • Badra, P.J. and R.R. Goforth. 2003. Freshwater mussel surveys of Great Lakes tributary rivers in Michigan. Report Number MNFI 2003-15 to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Coastal Zone Management Unit, Lansing, Michigan. 40 pp.

  • Bogan, A.E. 1993a. Workshop on freshwater bivalves of Pennsylvania. Workshop hosted by Aquatic Systems Corporation, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, held at Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 6-7 May 1993. 80 pp.

  • COSEWIC. 2003. COSEWIC assessment and status report on the kidneyshell Ptychobranchus fasciolaris in Canada. Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. Ottawa, Canada. 32 pp.

  • Cicerello, R.R. and G.A. Schuster. 2003. A guide to the freshwater mussels of Kentucky. Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission Scientific and Technical Series 7:1-62.

  • Clarke, A.H. 1992. Ontario's Sydenham River, an important refugium for native freshwater mussels against competition from the zebra mussel, Dreissena polymorpha. Malacology Data Net, 3(1-4): 43-55.

  • Gordon, M.E. 1991. Aquatic mollusca of the Rough River in the vicinity of the Fort Hartford Mine site, Ohio County, Kentucky. Unpublished final report for Environmental and Safety Designs, Memphis, Tennessee, 6 July 1991. 10 pp.

  • Graf, D.L. 2002. Historical biogeography and late glacial origin of the freshwater pearly mussel (Bivalvia: Unionidae) faunas of Lake Erie, North America. Occasional Papers on Mollusks 6(82):175-211.

  • Hanlon, S.D., M.A. Petty, and R.J. Neves. 2009. Status of native freshwater mussels in Copper Creek, Virginia. Southeastern Naturalist 8(1):1-18.

  • Jones, J.W., R.J. Neves, M.A. Patterson, C.R. Good, and A. DiVittorio. 2001. A status survey of freshwater mussel populations in the upper Clinch River, Tazewell County, Virginia. Banisteria, 17: 20-30.

  • Metcalfe-Smith, J.L. and B. Cudmore-Vokey. 2004. National general status assessment of freshwater mussels (Unionacea). National Water Research Institute / NWRI Contribution No. 04-027. Environment Canada, March 2004. Paginated separately.

  • Metcalfe-Smith, J.L., J. Di Maio, S.K. Staton, and S.R. De Solla. 2003. Status of the freshwater mussel communities of the Sydenham River, Ontario, Canada. American Midland Naturalist 150:37-50.

  • Morris, J.S. and R.W. Taylor. 1992. A survey of the freshwater mussels (Bivalvia: Unionidae) of the Kanawha River of West Virginia. The Nautilus 92(4):153-155.

  • Morris, T.J. and J. Di Maio. 1999. Current distributions of freshwater mussels (Bivalvia: Unionidae) in rivers of southwestern Ontario. Malacological Review, 31/32(1): 9-17.

  • North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission. 2007. North Carolina Atlas of Freshwater Mussels and Endangered Fish. Online. Available: http://www.ncwildlife.org/Wildlife_Species_Con/WSC_FWMussels_EndFish_Atlas.htm

  • Parmalee, P.W. and A.E. Bogan. 1998. The Freshwater Mussels of Tennessee. University of Tennessee Press: Knoxville, Tennessee. 328 pp.

  • Strayer, D.L. and K.J. Jirka. 1997. The Pearly Mussels of New York State. New York State Museum Memoir 26. The University of the State of New York. 113 pp. + figures.

  • Trdan, R.J. and W.R. Hoeh. 1993. Relocation of two state-listed freshwater mussel species (Epioblasma torulosa rangiana and Epioblasma triquetra) in Michigan. Pages 100-105 in K.S. Cummings, A.C. Buchanan, and L.M. Koch. (eds.). Conservation and Management of Freshwater Mussels. Proceedings of a UMRCC Symposium, 12-14 October 1992, St. Louis, Missouri. Upper Mississippi River Conservation Committee, Rock Island, Illinois. 189 pp.

  • Watters, G.T. 1995a. A field guide to the freshwater mussels of Ohio. revised 3rd edition. Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife, Columbus, Ohio. 122 pp.

  • Watters, G.T., M.A. Hoggarth, and D.H. Stansbery. 2009b. The Freshwater Mussels of Ohio. Ohio State University Press: Columbus, Ohio. 421 pp.

  • Williams, J.D., A.E. Bogan, and J.T. Garner. 2008. Freshwater Mussels of Alabama & the Mobile Basin in Georgia, Mississippi & Tennessee. University of Alabama Press: Tuscaloosa, Alabama. 908 pp.

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