Distribution, genetic analysis and conservation priorities for rare Texas freshwater molluscs in the genera Fusconaia and Pleurobema (Bivalvia: Unionidae)
Freshwater bivalves in the order Unionoida are considered to be one of the most endangered groups of animals in North America. In Texas, where over 60% of unionids are rare or very rare, 15 species have been recently added to the state’s list of threatened species, and 11 are under consideration for federal listing. Due to insufficient survey efforts in the past decades, however, primary data on current distribution and habitat requirement for most of these rare species are lacking, thus challenging their protection and management. Taxonomic identification of endemic species based on shell morphology is challenging and complicates conservation efforts. In this paper we present historic and current distributional data for three rare Texas species, Fusconaia askewi, F. lananensis, and Pleurobema riddellii, collected during our 2003–2011 state-wide surveys and suggest appropriate conservation measures. In addition, we tested the genetic affinities of Fusconaia and similar species collected from eastern Texas and western Louisiana using cox1 and nad1 sequences.
Burlakova LE, Campbell DC, Karatayev AY, Barclay D. 2012. Distribution, genetic analysis and conservation priorities for rare Texas freshwater molluscs in the genera Fusconaia and Pleurobema (Bivalvia: Unionidae). Aquatic Biosystems 8:12. https://aquaticbiosystems.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/2046-9063-8-12