, Volume 590, Issue 1, pp 43–46 | Cite as

Invasive zebra mussel colonisation of invasive crayfish: a case study

  • Zdeněk ĎurišEmail author
  • Ivona Horká
  • Adam Petrusek
Invasive Crustacea


We investigated the interaction between two invasive invertebrate species in a shallow Central European flooded sandpit: the epibiosis of Ponto-Caspian zebra mussels Dreissena polymorpha on the American crayfish Orconectes limosus. Between 2004 and 2005, we followed the seasonal variation in number and size of the mussels attached to crayfish bodies, and microhabitats preferred by mussels. The proportion of crayfish colonised by mussels varied seasonally: in spring and early summer it was consistently over 75%, afterwards it dropped temporarily due to loss of bivalves during the crayfish moult, and later increased again due to re-colonisation by often relatively large juvenile mussels. Three different pathways of mussel settlement on crayfish hosts are likely: (1) primary settlement of free-swimming pediveliger larvae; (2) secondary settlement of plantigrade mussels and juveniles; (3) active re-attachment of grown mussels from the substrate to crayfish. This epibiosis was promoted by lack of suitable substrates at the studied locality.


Zebra mussel Dreissena polymorpha Spiny-cheek crayfish Orconectes limosus Body colonisation Epibiosis 



Our research was supported by the Czech Science Foundation (project GAČR 206/03/0532) and the Czech Ministry of Education (MSM0021620828 and MSM6007665809). We thank Jiří Kristian, Tereza Petrusková and Lenka Filipová for field assistance.

Supplementary material

ESM1.doc (52 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BiologyUniversity of OstravaOstravaCzech Republic
  2. 2.Charles University in Prague, Faculty of Science, Department of EcologyPrague 2Czech Republic
  3. 3.University of South Bohemia in České Budějovice, Research Institute of Fish Culture and Hydrobiology at VodňanyVodňanyCzech Republic

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