Quadrula apiculata - (Say, 1829)
Southern Mapleleaf
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Quadrula apiculata (Say, 1829) (TSN 80073)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.116872
Element Code: IMBIV39010
Informal Taxonomy: Animals, Invertebrates - Mollusks - Freshwater Mussels
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Animalia Mollusca Bivalvia Unionoida Unionidae Quadrula
Genus Size: D - Medium to large genus (21+ 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: Quadrula apiculata
Taxonomic Comments: The taxonomic relationships of the morphologically variable Q. apiculata to Q. quadrula, Q. rumphiana, and Q.. nobilis are unclear. Serb et al. (2003) reported all four of these taxa to be closely related but the study did not include Q. apiculata from the Mobile Basin.
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G5
Global Status Last Reviewed: 18May2009
Global Status Last Changed: 25Nov1996
Rounded Global Status: G5 - Secure
Reasons: This species is considered widespread and stable in the southern Mississippi Interior Basin, eastern and western Gulf drainages and into Tennessee, Kentucky, Texas and Mexico.
Nation: United States
National Status: N5 (16Jul1998)

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 (S5), Arkansas (S2), Louisiana (S4), Mississippi (S5), Oklahoma (S4), Tennessee (S5), Texas (S4)

Other Statuses

American Fisheries Society Status: Currently Stable (01Jan1993)

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent: 200,000-2,500,000 square km (about 80,000-1,000,000 square miles)
Range Extent Comments: Distribution includes the southern portion of the Mississippi Interior basin, eastern and western Gulf drainages; and introduced into the Tennessee River; lower Kentucky Lake, Kentucky (Parmalee and Bogan, 1998) and south into Texas and the Rio Grande in Chihuahua (Howells and Garrett, 1995) and Rio Salado in Nuevo Leon, Mexico (Strenth et al., 2004).

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

Number of Occurrences: > 300
Number of Occurrences Comments: In Texas, it occurs in all major drainage systems (Howells et al., 1996). In the Rio Grande system from Texas to New Mexico and south into Mexico, it is known from the Rio Grande drainage in Starr, Hidalgo, and Cameron Cos., Texas (Johnson, 1999). Strenth et al. (2004) documented dead or recently dead shells of this species in the Rio Salado in Nuevo Leon, Mexico. In Mississippi, it occurs in the Mississippi River North and South, Big Black, Yazoo, Tennessee, Pearl, Pascagoula, and Tombigbee drainages (Jones et al., 2005). In Louisiana, it is common in the Pearl, upper Mississippi, Actchafalaya, Tensas, Bayou D'Arbonne, Bayou Teche, Mermentau, Calcasieu, Sabine and Neches Rivers (Vidrine, 1993) with 1990s records from the Amite (Brown and Banks, 2001). In Tennessee, this species is distributed in the Tennessee River (Kentucky Lake) below Pickwidk Landing Dam, Hardin Co., downstream locally to the Tennessee-Kentucky border (Parmalee and Bogan, 1998). In Alabama, it is locally common and formerly restricted to the Mobile basin but introduced into the lower Tennessee River at Pickwick Reservoir (Mirarchi, 2004; Williams et al., 2008). McGregor et al. (1999) documented it in the Alabama and Tombigbee River drainages, Alabama. McGregor and Garner (2004) recently documented this species in the Bear Creek drainage in Alabama/Mississippi. In Arkansas, Posey et al. (1996) reported it at multiple sites in the Ouachita River (between River Miles 353.7 and 221.2) and it may also occur in the Ouachita River and Lake Chicot with a specimen that may be attributable to this species collected in the White River near DaValls Bluff; while its status in the Arkansas River is not known (Harris et al., 1997). This species was recently collected from the Black Warrior River in Tuscaloosa and Greene/Hale Cos. and historically in the upper Tombigbee River in Sumter and Greene Cos., Alabama (Williams et al., 1992). Vaughn (2003) could not find this species in the Glover River (Little River drainage) in Oklahoma despite historical documentation there.

Population Size: >1,000,000 individuals

Number of Occurrences with Good Viability/Integrity: Unknown

Short-term Trend: Relatively Stable (<=10% change)

Long-term Trend: Decline of <30% to increase of 25%

Intrinsic Vulnerability: Unknown

Environmental Specificity: Broad. Generalist or community with all key requirements common.
Environmental Specificity Comments: This is primarily a big river species inhabiting unimpounded rivers with good currents as well as lakes and reservoirs often in coarse sand and gravel up to 10 to 15 feet deep (Parmalee and Bogan, 1998).

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: (200,000-2,500,000 square km (about 80,000-1,000,000 square miles)) Distribution includes the southern portion of the Mississippi Interior basin, eastern and western Gulf drainages; and introduced into the Tennessee River; lower Kentucky Lake, Kentucky (Parmalee and Bogan, 1998) and south into Texas and the Rio Grande in Chihuahua (Howells and Garrett, 1995) and Rio Salado in Nuevo Leon, Mexico (Strenth et al., 2004).

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, AR, LA, MS, OK, TN, TX

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
AL Baldwin (01003), Bibb (01007), Blount (01009), Clarke (01025), Greene (01063), Jefferson (01073), Monroe (01099), Perry (01105), Pickens (01107), Sumter (01119)*, Tuscaloosa (01125)
AR Arkansas (05001), Ashley (05003), Bradley (05011), Cleveland (05025), Craighead (05031), Crawford (05033), Cross (05037), Dallas (05039), Drew (05043), Grant (05053), Hempstead (05057), Howard (05061), Lawrence (05075), Lee (05077), Lincoln (05079), Little River (05081), Miller (05091), Mississippi (05093), Monroe (05095), Ouachita (05103), Phillips (05107), Poinsett (05111), Prairie (05117), Sevier (05133), Woodruff (05147)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
03 Cahaba (03150202)+, Lower Alabama (03150204)+, Sipsey (03160107)+, Locust (03160111)+, Sucarnoochee (03160202)+*
08 Lower Mississippi-Memphis (08010100)+, Lower St. Francis (08020203)+, Little River Ditches (08020204)+, L'anguille (08020205)+, Lower White-Bayou Des Arc (08020301)+, Cache (08020302)+, Lower White (08020303)+, Upper Ouachita (08040102)+, Upper Saline (08040203)+, Lower Saline (08040204)+, Bayou Bartholomew (08040205)+, Boeuf (08050001)+
11 Lower Black (11010009)+, Frog-Mulberry (11110201)+, Pecan-Waterhole (11140106)+, Lower Little (11140109)+, Mckinney-Posten Bayous (11140201)+, Lower Sulphur (11140302)+
+ 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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Reproduction Comments: The glochidial host is not known.
Habitat Type: Freshwater
Non-Migrant: N
Locally Migrant: N
Long Distance Migrant: N
Riverine Habitat(s): BIG RIVER, MEDIUM RIVER, Riffle
Lacustrine Habitat(s): Deep water, Shallow water
Special Habitat Factors: Benthic
Habitat Comments: This is primarily a big river species inhabiting unimpounded rivers with good currents as well as lakes and reservoirs often in coarse sand and gravel up to 10 to 15 feet deep (Parmalee and Bogan, 1998).
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary Not yet assessed
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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: 18May2009
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Cordeiro, J.
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 19Apr2007
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
Help
  • Howard, A.D. 1915. Some exceptional cases of breeding among the Unionidae. The Nautilus 29:4-11.

  • Howells, R.G. and G.P. Garrett. 1995. Freshwater mussel surveys of the Rio Grande tributaries in Chihuahua, Mexico. Triannual Unionid Report, 8: 10.

  • Johnson, R.I. 1999. Unionidae of the Rio Grande (Rio Bravo del Norte) system of Texas and Mexico. Occasional Papers on Mollusks, 6(77): 1-65.

  • Lefevre, G. and W.T. Curtis. 1912. Studies on the reproduction and artificial propogation of fresh-water mussels. Bulletin of the Bureau of Fisheries 30:102-201.

  • McGregor, S.W., T.E. Shepard, T.D. Richardson, and J.F. Fitzpatrick, Jr. 1999. A survey of the primary tributaries of the Alabama and Lower Tombigbee rivers for freshwater mussels, snails, and crayfish. Geological Survey of Alabama, Circular 196. 29 pp.

  • Moyle, P. and J. Bacon. 1969. Distribution and abundance of molluscs in a fresh water environment. Journal of the Minnesota Academy of Science 35(2/3):82-85.

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

  • Serb, J.M., J.E. Buhan, and C. Lydeard. 2003. Molecular systematics of the North American freshwater bivalve genus Quadrula (Unionidae: Ambleminae) based on mitochondrial ND1 sequences. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 28: 1-11.

  • 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.

  • Strenth, N.E., R.G. Howells, and A. Correa-Sandoval. 2004. New records of the Texas hornshell Popenaias popeii (Bivalvia: Unionidae) from Texas and northern Mexico. The Texas Journal of Science, 56(3): 223-230.

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

  • 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., 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., 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, J.D., S.L.H. Fuller, and R. Gracea. 1992a. Effects of impoundment on freshwater mussels (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Unionidae) in the main channel of the Black Warrior and Tombigbee Rivers in western Alabama. Bulletin of the Alabama Museum of Natural History 13:1-10.

References for Watershed Distribution Map
  • Brown, K.M. and P.D. Banks. 2001. The conservation of unionid mussels in Louisiana rivers: diversity, assemblage composition and substrate use. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 11(3): 189-198.

  • Galbraith, H.S., D.E. Spooner, and C.C. Vaughn. 2008. Status of rare and endangered freshwater mussels in southeastern Oklahoma. The Southwestern Naturalist, 53(1): 45-50.

  • Harris, J.L., P.J. Rust, A.C. Christian, W.R. Posey II, C.L. Davidson, and G.L. Harp. 1997. Revised status of rare and endangered Unionacea (Mollusca: Margaritiferidae, Unionidae) in Arkansas. Journal of the Arkansas Academy of Science, 51: 66-89.

  • Howells, R.G., R.W. Neck, and H.D. Murray. 1996. Freshwater Mussels of Texas. Texas Parks and Wildlife Press: Austin, Texas. 218 pp.

  • 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.

  • McGregor, S.W. and J.T. Garner. 2004. Changes in the freshwater mussel (Bivalvia: Unionidae) fauna of the Bear Creek system of northwest Alabama and northeast Mississippi. American Malacological Bulletin, 18(1/2): 61-70.

  • Mirarchi, R.E., et al. 2004a. Alabama Wildlife. Volume One: A Checklist of Vertebrates and Selected Invertebrates: Aquatic Mollusks, Fishes, Amphibians, Reptiles, Birds, and Mammals. University of Alabama Press: Tuscaloosa, Alabama. 209 pp.

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

  • Posey, W.R., II, J.L. Harris and G.L. Harp. 1996a. New distributional records for freswater mussels in the Ouachita River, Arkansas. Proceedings of the Arkansas Academy of Science 50: 96-98.

  • Vaughn, C.C. 2003. The mussel fauna of the Glover River, Oklahoma. Proceedings of the Oklahoma Academy of Science, 83: 1-6.

  • Vidrine, M.F. 1993. The Historical Distributions of Freshwater Mussels in Louisiana. Gail Q. Vidrine Collectibles: Eunice, Louisiana. xii + 225 pp. + 20 plates.

  • 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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