Relocating and Surveying

Surveying and Observation Data

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Survey Protocol for Aquatic Mollusk Species The objective of this protocol is to provide standard survey methodology that can be used by field personnel to determine presence/absence for aquatic mollusk species, i.e., to determine what aquatic mollusk species are present in a selected body of water with a reasonable level of confidence, and to document species locations and habitats in a consistent format.

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Join our iNaturist.org citizen science project to report observations to help us better understand the distribution and status of freshwater mussels in the western U.S.A. and Canada. Freshwater mussel observations are needed from the states of Washington, Oregon, California, Idaho, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, and from the Canadian provinces of British Columbia and Alberta.

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Western Freshwater Mussel Database The Xerces Society and the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation have compiled a database of western freshwater mussel records for the following species and clades: Anodonta californiensis/nuttalliana, A. oregonensis/kennerlyi, Gonidea angulata, and Margaritifera falcata. Copies of this database are available to researchers upon request. For a full list of contributors and data sources used for this database, click here.

Relocation Resources

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Conserving the Gems of Our Waters
This publication draws from the expertise of members of the Pacific Northwest Native Freshwater Mussel Workgroup, western restoration practitioners, and aquatic biologists, and provides guidance and resources for a range of topics, from incorporating freshwater mussels into project planning, surveying for mussels, implementing best management practices, and performing salvages and relocations at restoration sites.

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Freshwater Mussel Relocation Guide Relocation of freshwater mussels from an existing site may be undertaken for a variety of reasons, including removing mussels from construction zones or restoration project sites where de-watering or sedimentation would be lethal. Mussel mortality following relocation is highly variable, and depends on multiple factors including handling and transportation time and conditions, water and air temperature, and suitability of the receiving site. The goals and potential consequences of each relocation effort should be carefully considered. The Workgroup developed these guidelines to help with the decision-making process for mussel relocation projects.