Biological Invasions

, Volume 17, Issue 1, pp 497–506 | Cite as

Behavior in invasive New Zealand mud snails (Potamopyrgus antipodarum) is related to source population

  • Edward P. LevriEmail author
  • T. J. Clark
Original Paper


Behavior can be an important determinant of invasion success. In the New Zealand mud snail (Potamopyrgus antipodarum), behavior is influential in predator avoidance and probably plays a role in dispersal. The present study investigated differences in behavior among populations of different asexual clones of this species and compared introduced populations characterized by various levels of invasiveness and New Zealand native clonal populations with respect to rheotactic, geotactic, photokinetic, and dispersal behaviors. There was a significant difference in behavior among populations in all behaviors evaluated. A population of a widespread clone (US1) behaved most differently from the other populations exhibiting differences in all behaviors including a greater propensity to disperse. These results indicate that there is a population and possibly a genotypic effect on behaviors in this freshwater snail, and this variation may help to explain why some clones are more invasive than others.


Snail Potamopyrgus antipodarum Clone Behavior 



We thank Frank Menaquale, Sarah Landis, Brittany Smith, Megan Radyk, Elizabeth Metz, and Christina Lehman for assistance in the lab, Mark Oswalt for logistical support, and Maurine Neiman (New Zealand) and Mark Dybdahl (Idaho, Wyoming) for donating many of the clones. We also thank Maureen Levri, Stephanie Tanner, two anonymous reviewers, and an anonymous editor for comments on earlier versions of the manuscript and Laura Palmer for assistance with figures. This work was funded by grants from Penn State – Altoona and the Penn State – Altoona Division of Mathematics and Natural Sciences.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Math and SciencesPenn State – AltoonaAltoonaUSA
  2. 2.Department of BiologyOhio Wesleyan UniversityDelawareUSA

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