Guardian Nature School Team Contact Blog Project Noah Facebook Project Noah Twitter

A global community of nature enthusiasts
photographing and learning about wildlife

Join Project Noah!
nature school apple icon

Project Noah Nature School visit nature school

Spike Mussel

Elliptio dilatata

Description:

This freshwater mussel has 3 invasive zebra mussels attached to it.

Habitat:

Found in the Tippecanoe River. Likes a gravel substrate in small to large streams.

Notes:

Shell solid, elongate, elliptical, and compressed to moderately inflated. Anterior end rounded, posterior end rounded to slightly pointed. Dorsal margin straight to slightly curved, ventral margin straight to curved in young shells, becoming arched in older shells. Umbows low, usually not elevated above the hinge line. Beak sculpture of three or four heavy loops. Surface smooth, greenish brown with faint green rays visible on small shells, becoming dark brown to black in adults. Length to 5 inches. Pseudocardial teeth well developed; two in the left valve, one in the right. Lateral teeth short, roughened, and straight. Beak cavity very shallow. Nacre variable, most often purple, occasionally pink, salmon, or white. (Info from Field Guide to Freshwater Mussels of the Midwest by Kevin Cummings and Christine Mayer)

Species ID Suggestions



Sign in to suggest organism ID

4 Comments

AshleyL
AshleyL 5 years ago

That's great to know, JoAnneDavis. I'm actually planning maybe to be a mussel biologist! Thank you so much! I will definitely study your spottings.

Wildifreq
Wildifreq 5 years ago

Thanks AshleyL, I have joined it. I'm a mussel biologist, so I can contribute some to it! :)

AshleyL
AshleyL 5 years ago

Great spotting, JoAnneDavis! I have a mission called "mission mussels" if you would like to join.

ceejayalyssa
ceejayalyssa 8 years ago

we used to collect these in our pond :)

Wildifreq
Spotted by
Wildifreq

Indiana, USA

Spotted on Sep 18, 2012
Submitted on Jun 30, 2013

Noah Guardians
Noah Sponsors
join Project Noah Team

Join the Project Noah Team