Non-marine mollusks have the highest number of documented extinctions of any major taxonomic group. Given their conservation status and the numerous cases of taxonomic uncertainty concerning freshwater mollusks in particular, the recognition of potentially endangered species is critically important. Here, we evaluate the genetic distinctiveness and phylogenetic position of a freshwater snail restricted to a series of geothermal springs within the Owyhee River drainage in Oregon (the ‘Owyhee wet-rock physa’). Because these snails closely resemble Physella (Petrophysa) zionis, a wet-rock physa that occurs in a small area in Zion National Park (Utah), the Owyhee wet-rock physa is presumably either closely related to or represents a disjunct population of P. zionis. However, phylogenetic analyses of sequences of mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I and nuclear first and second internal transcribed spacer gene regions indicate that the Owyhee wet-rock physa is genetically distinct from other physid species. Despite exhibiting similar morphologies, the Owyhee wet-rock physa and P. zionis are distantly related physids; instead, the Owyhee wet-rock physa is most closely related to a population of physids from central California. These results suggest that convergent evolution may be responsible for the similar shell morphologies of the Owyhee wet-rock physa and P. zionis. Furthermore, the close relationship between physid populations in southeastern Oregon and central California suggests a historical connection between the Owyhee River and river drainages to the south. Finally, we recommend that the Owyhee wet-rock physa be considered critically endangered based on its extremely limited distribution.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Albrecht C, Wilke T, Kuhn K, Streit B (2004) Convergent evolution of shell shape in freshwater limpets: the African genus Burnupia. Zool J Linn Soc 140(4):577–586
Albrecht C, Wolff C, Gloer P, Wilke T (2008) Concurrent evolution of ancient sister lakes and sister species: the freshwater gastropod genus Radix in lakes Ohrid and Prespa. Hydrobiologia 615(1):157–167
Albrecht C, Kroll O, Moreno Terrazas E, Wilke T (2009) Invasion of ancient Lake Titicaca by the globally invasive Physa acuta (Gastropoda: Pulmonata: Hygrophila). Biol Invasions 11(8):1821–1826
Britton DK, McMahon RF (2004) Effects of temperature on physiological energetics in the common pond snail, Physella virgata. Physiol Biochem Zool 77:187–196
Burch JB, Tottenham J (1980) North American freshwater snails: species list, ranges, and illustrations. Walkerana 1(3):1–215
Dayrat B, Conrad M, Balayan S, White TR, Albrecht C, Golding R, Gomes SR, Harasewych MG, de Frias Martins AM (2011) Phylogenetic relationships and evolution of pulmonate gastropods (Mollusca): new insights from increased taxon sampling. Mol Phylog Evol 59(2):425–437
DeJong RJ, Morgan JAT, Paraense WL, Pointier JP, Amarista M, Ayeh-Kumi PFK, Babiker A, Barbosa CS, Bremond P, Canese AP, de Souza CP, Dominguez C, File S, Gutierrez A, Incani RN, Kawano T, Kazibwe F, Kpikpi J, Lwambo NJS, Mimpfoundi R, Njiokou F, Poda JN, Sene M, Velasquez LE, Yong M, Adema CM, Hofkin BV, Mkoji GM, Loker ES (2001) Evolutionary relationships and biogeography of Biomphalaria (Gastropoda: Planorbidae) with implications regarding its role as host of the human bloodfluke, Schistosoma mansoni. Mol Biol Evol 18(12):2225–2239
DeWitt TJ (1995) Functional tradeoffs and phenotypic plasticity in the freshwater snail Physa. PhD Thesis, Boston University
DeWitt TJ, Scheiner SM (2004) Phenotypic plasticity: functional and conceptual approaches. Oxford University Press, Cary, pp 126–150
Folmer O, Black M, Hoeh W, Lutz R, Vrijenhoek R (1994) DNA primers for amplification of mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I from diverse metazoan invertebrates. Mol Mar Biol Biotechnol 3:294–297
Frest TJ, Johannes EJ (1995) Interior Columbia Basin mollusk species of special concern: Final report. Interior Columbia Basin ecosystem management project. www.icbemp.gov/science/frest_1.pdf. Accessed 1 August 2012
Gates K, Kerans B, Keebaugh J, Kalinowski S, Vu N (2012) Taxonomic identity of the endangered Snake River physa, Physa natricina (Pulmonata: Physidae) combining traditional and molecular techniques. Con Gen 14:159–169
Hershler R, Madsen DB, Currey DR (2002) Great Basin aquatic systems history. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington DC, pp 145–387
International Union for Conservation of Nature (2010) IUCN guidelines for using the IUCN red list categories and criteria. Version 8.1. Prepared by the standards and petitions subcommittee in March 2010. Downloadable from http://intranet.iucn.org/webfiles/doc/SSC/RedList/RedListGuidelines.pdf. Accessed 1 August 2012
International Union for Conservation of Nature (2012) IUCN red list categories and criteria: version 3.1. Second edition. Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK: IUCN. iv +, pp 32. http://www.iucnredlist.org/technical-documents/categories-and-criteria. Accessed 1 August 2012
Johnson PD, Bogan AE, Brown KM, Burkhead NM, Cordeiro JR, Garner JT, Hartfield PD, Lepitzki DW, Mackie GL, Pip E, Tarpley TA, Tiemann JS, Whelan NV, Strong EE (2013) Conservation status of freshwater gastropods of canada and the united states. Fisheries 38(6):247–282
Jorgensen A, Kristensen TK, Stothard JR (2007) Phylogeny and biogeography of African Biomphalaria (Gastropoda: Planorbidae), with emphasis on endemic species of the great East African lakes. Zool J Linn Soc 151(2):337–349
Lydeard C, Cowie RH, Ponder WF, Bogan AE, Bouchet P, Clark SA, Cummings KS, Frest TJ, Gargominy O, Herbert DG, Hershler R, Perez KE, Roth C, Seddon M, Strong EE, Thompson FG (2004) The global decline of nonmarine mollusks. Bio Sci 54(4):321–330
Lysne SJ, Perez KE, Brown KM, Minton RL, Sides JD (2008) A review of freshwater gastropod conservation: challenges and opportunities. J N Am Benthol Soc 27(2):463–470
Miller RR (1965) Quaternary freshwater fishes of North America. In: Wright HE Jr, Frey DG (eds) The quaternary of the United States. Princeton University Press, Princeton, pp 569–581
Miller RR and Smith GR (1967) New fossil fishes from Plio-Pleistocene Lake Idaho, vol 654. Occasional papers of the Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan, pp 1–24
Miller RR and Smith GR (1981) Distribution and evolution of Chasmistes (Pisces: Catostomidae) in Western North America, vol 696. Occasional papers of the Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan, pp 1–46
Pilsbury HA (1925) A fresh-water snail, Physella zionis, living under unusual conditions. Proc Acad Nat Sci Philadelphia 77:325–328
Pip E, Franck JPC (2008) Molecular phylogenetics of central Canadian Physidae (Pulmonata: Basommatophora) Can. J Zool 86:10–16
Rambaut A (1996) Se–Al: sequence alignment editor. Retrieved August 12, 2012 from http://iubio.bio.indiana.edu/soft/iubionew/molbio/dna/analysis/Pist/main.html
Rambaut A (2009) FigTree v1.3.1 2006–2009. Retrieved August 12, 2012 from http://tree.bio.ed.ac.uk/software/figtree/
Regnier C, Fontaine D, Bouchet P (2009) Not knowing, not recording, not listing: numerous unnoticed mollusk extinctions. Con Bio 23(5):1214–1221
Remigio E, Lepitzki D, Lee J, Hebert P (2001) Molecular systematic relationships and evidence for a recent origin of the thermal spring endemic snails Physella johnsoni and Physella wrighti (Pulmonata: Physidae). Can J Zool 79(11):1941–1949
Rogers D, Wethington A (2007) Physa natricina Taylor 1988, junior synonym of Physa acuta Draparnaud, 1805 (Pulmonata: Physidae). Zootaxa 1662:45–51
Smith GR, Morgan N, and Gustafson E (2000) Fishes of the Mio-Pliocene Ringold Formation, Washington: pliocene capture of the snake river by the Columbia River. University of Michigan, papers on paleontology, No. 32
Strayer D (2006) Challenges for freshwater invertebrate conservation. J N Am Benthol Soc 25(2):271–287
Tamura K, Peterson D, Peterson N, Stecher G, Nei M, Kumar S (2011) MEGA5: Molecular evolutionary genetics analysis using maximum likelihood, evolutionary distance, and maximum parsimony methods. Mol Bio Evo 28:2731–2739
Taylor DW (1960) Distribution of the freshwater clam Pisidium ultramontanum; a zoogeographic inquiry. Am J Sci 258-A:325–334
Taylor DW (1985) Evolution of freshwater drainages and molluscs in western North America. In: Smiley CJ (ed) Late cenozoic history of the Pacific Northwest. American Association for the Advancement of Science, San Francisco, pp 265–321
Taylor DW (2003) Introduction to Physidae (Gastropoda: Hygrophila) biogeography, classification, morphology. Revista de Biologia Trop 51:1–287
United States geological survey (2010) Water data report: 09413500 Virgin River near St George, UT. National water information system. U.S. geological survey. Retrieved April 15, 2013 from <http://waterdata.usgs.gov/usa/nwis/uv?09413500>
United States geological survey (2013) Water data report: 13184000 Owyhee River at Owyhee, OR. National Water Information System. U.S. geological survey. Retrieved April 15, 2013 from <http://nwis.waterdata.usgs.gov/nwis/monthly/?referred_module=sw&site_no=13184000&por_13184000_2=545544,00060,2,1890-03,1986-09&format=html_table&date_format=YYYY-MM-DD&rdb_compression=file&submitted_form=parameter_selection_list>
Wagner HM, Hanson CB, Gustafson EP, Gobalet KW, Whistler DP (1997) Biogeography of the pliocene and pleistocene vertebrate faunas of Northeastern California and their temporal significance to the development of the Modoc Plateau and Klamath Mountain Region. San Bernardino County Museum Assoc Quarterly 44(1):13–21
Wethington A, Guralnick R (2004) Are populations of physids from different hot springs distinctive lineages? Am Malacol Bull 19(1–2):135–144
Wethington A, Lydeard C (2007) A molecular phylogeny of physidae (Gastropoda: Basommatophora) based on mitochondrial DNA sequences. J Molluscan Stud 73:241–257
Wheeler HE, Cook EF (1954) Structural and stratigraphic significance of the snake river capture. Idaho-Oregon J Geol 62(6):525–536
White LR, McPheron BA, Stauffer JR Jr (1996) Molecular genetic identification tools for the unionids of French Creek, Pennsylvania. Malacologia 38:181–202
Wilke T, Schultheiss R, Albrecht C (2009) As time goes by: a simple fool’s guide to molecular clock approaches in invertebrates. Am Malacol Bull 27:25–45
Xu Z, Guo X, Gaffney PM, Pierce JC (2001) Chromosomal location of the major ribosomal RNA genes in Crassostrea virginica and Crassostrea gigas. Veliger 44:79–83
We thank D. Hopper (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) and G.R. Smith (University of Michigan) for their varied expertise, assistance, and suggestions. We are also grateful to A. Wethington (Chowan University), B. Dayrat (Pennsylvania State University), W.H. Clark and S.J. Lysne (Orma J. Smith Museum of Natural History), and E. Kools (California Academy of Sciences) for providing specimens used in this work. The University of Michigan Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and the Rackham Graduate School provided financial support. We also thank C. Dick and J. Pappas (University of Michigan) for the support and feedback that they provided on this work. This manuscript was also considerably improved based on input received from T. Lee (University of Michigan) and three anonymous reviewers.
About this article
Cite this article
Moore, A.C., Burch, J.B. & Duda, T.F. Recognition of a highly restricted freshwater snail lineage (Physidae: Physella) in southeastern Oregon: convergent evolution, historical context, and conservation considerations. Conserv Genet 16, 113–123 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10592-014-0645-5
- Freshwater gastropods
- Convergent evolution