Two new freshwater mussel species in Texas will most likely impact current efforts
Texas freshwater mussel research
Freshwater mussels have the some of the highest rates of extinction of all freshwater organisms in the world. In Texas, 15 species are listed as state threatened, while 12 are pending review for federal listing under the Endangered Species Act.
Freshwater mussels play important roles in ecosystem maintenance through nutrient cycling, stabilizing stream-bed substrates and increasing habitat diversity. Population declines can have significant impacts to an ecosystem’s structure and function.
In Texas, the lack of basic biological information on freshwater mussels, such as life history, taxonomy, reproductive biology and habitat, use limits conservation and recovery efforts. Since 2011, NRI’s freshwater mussel research program has provided information on mussel taxonomy, population distribution and ranges, and other science-based knowledge and solutions for state and federal natural resource agencies.
The centerpiece of our program is a 2,000-square-foot wet lab located at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Dallas. To name a few, current research efforts include studies on:
- mussel reproductive biology,
- thermal and salinity tolerances, and
- molecular analyses.
Data from these projects will help inform listing efforts, protect rare mussel species and promote aquatic ecosystem conservation.
As a research scientist for the Texas A&M Natural Resources Institute sin, Dr. Charles Randklev works on issues related to freshwater mussel conservation. His research expertise is unionid ecology with research interests …
The effect of flow and mussel species traits on the occurrence of rare mussels: A case study within selected rivers of the West Gulf Coastal Plain
Alexander H. Kiser, Jennifer M. Khan, Clinton R. Robertson, Roel Lopez, Charles R. Randklev
Using upper thermal limits of Lampsilis bracteata (Texas fatmucket) from the North Llano and San Saba rivers, Texas to inform water management practices in the Edwards Plateau
Amanda Goldsmith, Jennifer M. Khan, Clinton R. Robertson, Roel Lopez, Charles R. Randklev
Resolving species boundaries in the critically imperiled freshwater mussel species, Fusconaia mitchelli (Bivalvia: Unionidae)
Chase H. Smith, Nathan A. Johnson, Kaitlyn Havlik, Robert D. Doyle, Charles R. Randklev
A new species of freshwater mussel in the genus Popenaias Frierson, 1927, from the Gulf coastal rivers of central Mexico
Kentaro Inoue, Kevin S. Cummings, Jeremy S. Tiemann, Thomas D. Miller, Nathan Johnson, Chase H. Smith, and Charles R. Randklev
Linking life history strategies and historical baseline information shows effects of altered flow regimes and impoundments on freshwater mussel assemblages
Jennifer M. Khan, Jack Dudding, Michael Hart, Eric Tsakiris, Charles R. Randklev
Upper thermal limits of freshwater mussels (Bivalvia: Unionidae) from the Guadalupe River, Texas: linking flow and thermal tolerances of freshwater mussel species from the southwestern United States
Jennifer M. Khan, Jack Dudding, Michael Hart, Clinton R. Robertson, Roel Lopez, Charles R. Randklev
The utility of zooarchaeological data to guide listing efforts for an imperiled mussel species (Bivalvia: Unionidae: Pleurobema riddellii)
Charles R. Randklev, Steve Wolverton, Nathan A. Johnson, Chase H. Smith, Traci P. DuBose, Clinton R. Robertson, Julian Conley
Reproductive life history of 2 imperiled and 1 widely- distributed freshwater mussel species from the southwestern United States
Jack F. Dudding, Michael Hart, Jennifer M. Khan, Clinton R. Robertson, Roel Lopez and Charles R. Randklev
Hydraulic requirements of freshwater mussels (Unionidae) and a conceptual framework for how they respond to high flows
Charles R. Randklev, Michael A. Hart, Jennifer M. Khan, Eric T. Tsakiris, Clinton R. Robertson
Integrative taxonomy reveals a new species of freshwater mussel, Potamilus streckersoni sp. nov. (Bivalvia: Unionidae): implications for conservation and management
Chase H. Smith, Nathan A. Johnson, Kentaro Inoue, Robert D. Doyle & Charles R. Randklev
A comprehensive approach uncovers hidden diversity in freshwater mussels (Bivalvia: Unionidae) with the description of a novel species
Kentaro Inouea, John L. Harris, Clinton R. Robertson, Nathan A. Johnson and Charles R. Randklev
Host Fish Associations for Two Highly Imperiled Mussel Species from the Southwestern United States: Cyclonaias necki (Guadalupe Orb) and Fusconaia mitchelli (False Spike)
Jack Dudding, Michael Hart, Jennifer Khan, Clinton R. Robertson, RoelLopez, and Charles R. Randklev
Evaluating the upper thermal limits of glochidia for selected freshwater mussel species (Bivalvia: Unionidae) in central and east Texas, and the implications for their conservation
Jennifer M. Khan, Michael Hart, Jack Dudding, Clinton R. Robertson, Roel Lopez, Charles R. Randklev
Salinity tolerance of a rare and endangered unionid mussel, Popenaias popeii (Texas Hornshell) and its implications for conservation and water management
Michael A. Hart, Tom D. Miller, Charles R. Randklev
Integrative taxonomy resolves taxonomic uncertainty for freshwater mussels being considered for protection under the U.S. Endangered Species Act
Nathan A. Johnson, Chase H. Smith, John M. Pfeiffer, Charles R. Randklev, James D. Williams & James D. Austin
The effect of dewatering on freshwater mussel (Unionidae) community structure and the implications for conservation and water policy: A case study from a spring-fed stream in the southwestern United States
Charles R.Randklev, Eric T.Tsakris, Matthew S.Johnson, Traci Popejoy, Michael A.Hart, Jennifer Khan, Dakus Geeslin, Clinton R. Robertson
The Pleurobemini (Bivalvia : Unionida) revisited: molecular species delineation using a mitochondrial DNA gene reveals multiple conspecifics and undescribed species
Kentaro Inoue, David M. Haye , John L. Harris, Nathan A. Johnson, Cheryl L. Morrison, Michael S. Eackles, Tim L. King, Jess W. Jones, Eric M. Hallerman, Alan D. Christian and Charles R. Randklev
Misidentification of sex for Lampsilis teres, Yellow Sandshell, and its implications for mussel conservation and wildlife management
Megan C. Hess, Kentaro Inoue, Eric T. Tsakiris, Michael Hart, Jennifer Morton, Jack Dudding, Clinton R. Robertson, Charles R. Randklev
Prioritizing sites for conservation based on similarity to historical baselines and feasibility of protection
Traci Popejoy, Charles R. Randklev, Thomas M. Neeson, and Caryn C. Vaughn
Molecular and morphometric analyses reveal cryptic diversity within freshwater mussels (Bivalvia: Unionidae) of the western Gulf coastal drainages of the USA
Anna M Pieri, Kentaro Inoue, Nathan Johnson, Chase Smith, John Harris, Clinton R. Robertson, Charles Randklev
A semi-arid river in distress: Contributing factors and recovery solutions for three imperiled freshwater mussels (Family Unionidae) endemic to the Rio Grande basin in North America
Charles R. Randklev, Tom Miller, Michael Hart, Jennifer Morton, Nathan A. Johnson, Kevin Skow, Kentaro Inoue, Eric T. Tsakiris, Susan Oetker, Ryan Smith, Clint Robertson, Roel Lopez
Novel technique to identify large river host fish for freshwater mussel propagation and conservation
Michael A. Hart, Wendell R. Haag, Robert Bringolf, James A. Stoeckel
Range-wide Microsatellite Analysis of the Genetic Population Structure of Prairie Voles (Microtus ochrogaster)
N. E. Adams, K. Inoue and N. G. Solomon D. J. Berg and B. Keane
Joint species models reveal the effectsof environment on communityassemblage of freshwater mussels andﬁshes in European rivers
Inoue K., Stoeckl K., and Geist J.
An interpretive framework for assessing freshwater mussel taxonomic abundances in zooarchaeological faunas
T. Popejoy, S. Wolverton, L. Nagaoka, C.R. Randklev
Conservation implications of late Holocene freshwater mussel remains of the Leon River in central Texas
T. Popejoy, C.R. Randklev, S. Wolverton, L. Nagaoka
Structural Changes in Freshwater Mussel (Bivalvia: Unionidae) Assemblages Downstream of Lake Somerville, Texas
E.T. Tsakiris, C.R. Randklev
Generic reclassification and species boundaries in the rediscovered freshwater mussel ‘Quadrula’ mitchelli (Simpson in Dall, 1896)
J. M. Pfeiffer,N. A. Johnson. C. R. Randklev, R. G. Howells, J. D. Williams
Land use relationships for a rare freshwater mussel species (Family: Unionidae) endemic to central Texas
C. R. Randklev, H-H Wang, J. E. Groce, W. E. Grant, S. Robertson, N. Wilkins
Distribution of extant populations of Quadrula mitchelli (false spike)
C.R. Randklev, E.T. Tsakiris, R.G. Howells, J. Groce, M.S. Johnson, J. Bergmann, C. Robertson, A. Blair, B. Littrell, and N. Johnson
New distributional records for four rare freshwater mussel species (Family: Unionidae) in southwestern Louisiana
C.R. Randklev, J. Skorupski, B.J. Lundeen, and E.T. Tsakiris
Is False Spike, Quadrula mitchelli (Bivalvia: Unionidae), extinct? First account of a very-recently deceased individual in over thirty years
C.R. Randklev, E.T. Tsakiris, M.S. Johnson, J. Skorupski, L.E. Burlakova , J. Groce, and N. Wilkins
Status of the freshwater mussel (Unionidae) communities of the mainstem of the Leon River, Texas
C.R. Randklev, M.S. Johnson, E.T. Tsakiris, J. Groce, N. Wilkins
New and confirmed fish hosts for the threatened freshwater mussel Lampsilis bracteata
M.S. Johnson, P.D. Caccavale, C.R. Randklev, and J.R. Gibson
Taxonomic Status of Pigtoe Unionids in Texas
R. G. Howells, C. R. Randklev, N. B. Ford
First account of a living population of False Spike, Quadrula mitchelli (Bivalvia: Unionidae), in the Guadalupe River, Texas
C.R. Randklev, M.S. Johnson, E.T. Tsakiris, S. Rogers-Oetker, K.J. Roe, S. McMurray, C. Robertson, J. Groce, N. Wilkins
Mantle flap variation in Texas Fatmucket (Lampsilis bracteata)
R.G. Howells, C.R. Randklev, M.S. Johnson
Status of Freshwater Mussels in Texas
K. Winemiller, N. K. Lujan, R. N. Wilkins, R. T. Snelgrove, A. M. Dube, K. L. Skow, A. G. Snelgrove
DALLAS – A team of researchers recently discovered two new freshwater mussel species in Texas, which will likely impact current conservation efforts by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.
The freshwater mussel team successfully raised an endangered species of mussel in the lab.
Vice Chancellor Dr. Stover, who joined Texas A&M in March and was also sole finalist for director of Texas A&M AgriLife Research, met with Dallas Center and NRI leadership late August on a two-day tour of the construction and integral initiatives within the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Dallas.
Texas A&M AgriLife scientists are working to better understand the ecology and taxonomy of Texas freshwater mussels. These mussels play critically important roles in freshwater ecosystems and have beneficial impacts on human health, making them a high priority for conservation. Fifteen species have previously been classified as "threatened," and now one--the Texas hornshell mussel--is officially listed as "endangered."
Jennifer Morton hovers methodically over a row of clear, water-filled containers on a tight-spaced industrial shelving system. She plucks a mollusk from one of the containers, observing the specimen as part of a study on freshwater mussel tolerances.
Megan Hess, an assistant researcher looking into declining mussel populations, was recognized this past week for her ongoing work to determine the ratio of male to female freshwater mussels among certain critically imperiled species.
Though zebra mussels in Texas give mussels a bad name, other freshwater mussels are welcomed and needed in Texas waters.
Invasive zebra mussels, first confirmed in Texas in 2009, are causing major economic and environmental damages to Texas reservoirs. But unionid mussels, a family of freshwater mussels, are important indicators of water quality and stream health and play an important role in freshwater ecosystems, according to Dr. Charles Randklev, research scientist for the Texas A&M Institute of Renewable Natural Resources (IRNR).
Directly from the field, the Summer 2023 NRI Sourcebook is here. Each season, we publish a digital collection of recently published peer-reviewed scientific publications, research reports, and resources developed to support the improvement of conservation, natural resource management, and private land stewardship. This collection is for you, your partners and community to use and share where we can collaborate to create resiliency.
We're building a community of practice around land stewardship where you can click, open, explore, shuffle and share the content to save and use as you need it. We're excited to share the final of four collections with you—out now: Threatened and Endangered Species.
Did you know that freshwater mussels (Unionidae) use a variety of methods to attract fish? While some passively release glochidia in the water, others proactively lure fish to resemble minnows, insects and other prey. A little hard to imagine, right?
From the field to your desk, the Spring 2021 NRI Sourcebook is here — a digital collection complete with the recently accepted peer-reviewed scientific publications, research reports, and resources developed to support the improvement of conservation, natural resource management and private land stewardship.
The Fall 2020 NRI Sourcebook (V1:I2) is here, a digital collection complete with the recently published peer-reviewed scientific publications, research reports, and resources developed to support the improvement of conservation, natural resource management and private land stewardship.
The Summer 2020 NRI Sourcebook (V1:I1) is here, a digital collection complete with the recently published peer-reviewed scientific publications, research reports, and resources developed to support the improvement of conservation, natural resource management and private land stewardship.
It's not every day we have picture perfect proof to back some of our wildlife research predation theories. Looks like we've been dealt a different hand in luck lately.