Photo courtesy of E. Nedeau
NH Conservation Status: Not listed
NH State Rank Status: Apparently secure (global – secure)
Distribution: Found in the coastal, Connecticut, Merrimack, and Androscoggin River watersheds. Click here to see which watersheds and/or waterbodies the species has been documented.
Description: A medium sized to large, elongate mussel growing up to 7 inches! Shell color is usually greenish-yellow or brownish. The inner shell (nacre) is silvery-white or metallic-bluish. Shell is very thin and fragile!
Habitat: Small rivers and streams as well as ponds and lakes, and some wetlands. Usually not in fast moving currents. Prefers sandy, muddy, or silt substrates.
Life History: Uses a wide variety of fish species as host fish, which may include yellow perch, bluegill, and the white sucker.
Conservation Threats: Species is relatively tolerant of eutrophic conditions but may suffer some mortality when oxygen is reduced substantially.
Lake and wetland drawdowns can negatively affect local mussel populations. In this photo, a beaver dam was breached leaving a large number of eastern floaters stranded on shore. Photo by M. Marchand.