Investigating Mussel Communities in Wadeable Streams of Illinois

Mussel community data was collected in wadeable streams throughout Illinois at existing basin monitoring sites used by the IL Department of Natural Resources and IL Environmental Protection Agency. These data added a mussel component to the existing datasets of water and sediment chemistry, instream habitat, and macroinvertebrate and fish indices, and provided baseline data for future monitoring of freshwater mussel populations on a local, regional, and watershed basis. Funding from the US Fish and Wildlife Service State Wildlife Grant (SWG), Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), and the Illinois Natural History Survey supported this study.

Sampling crew sorts mussels collected in the Kankakee River basin

 

Slippershell mussels – Alasmidonta viridis

 

This work also helped establish expectations for mussel populations in Illinois and distribution maps (current as of 2013) were completed for species of freshwater mussel in Illinois.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The distribution maps and additional information collected during the basin surveys enabled us to provide a Status revision and update for Illinois’ freshwater mussel Species in Greatest Need of Conservation.

Sieving sediment for small mussels

 

Basin Survey Reports for Freshwater Mussels in Illinois

(scroll down for links to report for each basin)