American Water Resources Association
Aquatic Underdogs: How Mussel Restoration Can Help Save our Great Waters
Science Director, Partnership for the Delaware Estuary
Associate Research Professor, Drexel University
Abstract: Freshwater mussels are one of the most underrated and imperiled groups of animals in North America. Few people know much about them because they’re inconspicuous in our streams, rivers and lakes, and they are not yummy table fare like their marine counterparts, oysters, clams and mussels. But they have a fascinating life history, with long life spans and a tricky reproductive strategy. Since they are so sensitive to many pollutants and hydrological impairments, they are increasingly being used for biomonitoring. At the Partnership for the Delaware Estuary, freshwater mussels have been embraced as a core indicator of the status of our freshwater systems. Our forthcoming revision of the Delaware Estuary’s Conservation and Management Plan will partly focus on mussel recovery as a driver for ecosystem-based restoration. Why? Scientific evidence is mounting that healthy beds of freshwater mussels can help to maintain water quality, while also furnishing a diversity of other benefits to aquatic ecosystems. In this presentation, Danielle will summarize the status, trends and ecology of freshwater mussels in North America, with a focus on the Delaware River Basin. She’ll then review what we do and don’t yet know regarding their promise for water quality remediation in the Delaware Estuary and vicinity.
Danialle Kreeger is an ecologist with more than 30 years of experience working as a research scientist and educator. Her main areas of interest are shellfish ecology, wetland ecology, restoration ecology, and climate change preparedness. She is the science director for the Partnership for the Delaware Estuary (a National Estuary Program) and also serves as associate research professor at Drexel University.
This seminar does qualify for 1.0 Professional Development Hour (PDH). A Certificate of Attendance will be available on site for AWRA-PMAS members only. The meeting price for non-members who wish to receive a Certificate of Attendance for the PDH is $10.00 ($3.00 for meeting + $7.00 for certificate).