Impact of Silt and Clay Particles on Freshwater Mussels

Threatened and endangered (T&E) species considerations for Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) and Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) federally funded projects include potential impacts to rare plants, animals, critical habitat, and natural communities (e.g., streams, caves, prairies, karst). The objectives of this project are as follows: evaluate the impact of silt, clay and other mineral elements, particularly those particle types associated with transportation-sector construction activities, to freshwater mussels and study the mechanisms for such impacts; examine the effects of increased turbidity on mussel feeding and reproduction; investigate how different types of soils and minerals affect freshwater mussels, including identifying important thresholds of impact for each; and evaluate new and existing approaches that could mitigate the impact of various sediments from construction activities to mussels.