Effect of Muskrat Predation on Naiads

  • Elke Zahner-Meike
  • J. Mark Hanson
Part of the Ecological Studies book series (ECOLSTUD, volume 145)

Abstract

The freshwater mussel fauna in Europe is very different from that in North America. There are only ten species of freshwater mussels (Unionacea: Margaritiferidae and Unionidae) in Central Europe (Badino et al. 1991; Bogan 1993) whereas the North American fauna is very diverse, with about 290 recognized species and a high degree of endemism (Williams et al. 1993; Turgeon et al. 1998; Tyrrell and Hornbach 1998). While both freshwater mussel faunas are especially threatened by human activities, they face differing threats from introduced species due to marked differences in their evolutionary history. European naiads evolved in the absence of a large mammalian predator but, in some areas, evolved in the presence of an encrusting competitor (i.e., the zebra mussel, Dreissena polymorpha). Conversely, the North American naiads evolved in the presence of a large mammalian predator (i.e. the muskrat, Ondatra zibethicus) but in the absence of the encrusting competitors.

Keywords

Biomass Europe Adductor Muscle Assimilation Gravel 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elke Zahner-Meike
  • J. Mark Hanson

There are no affiliations available

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