Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Freshwater Mussels

When I was a kid these large, freshwater mussels were abundant. I've been told they were good to eat and I recall seeing the empty shells left over from riverside dinners, although I never ate one.

Today most clams and mussels in Indiana are on the endangered list for many reasons; pollution, nutrients caused by over-fertilization and pet feces; and possible over-harvesting in the past.

The best thing to do if you're lucky enough to see a mussel is to observe and let it be. This mussel was laying flat on the bed of a pond when I found him. He was soon upright as in the picture and was scooting along the bottom of the pond in search of a better bed.  

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