WVDNR Biologist Janet Clayton, seen in this photo on a mussel
survey, will be at North Bend State Park Feb. 25 to present
a program on the importance of mussels in West Virginia waters.

CAIRO, W.Va. - Biologist Janet Clayton with the Wildlife Resources Section of the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (WVDNR) will present an evening program, "Mussels -Why They're Important to West Virginia," at North Bend State Park Feb. 25, 2016. The 6:30 p.m. program will cover the importance of mussels in streams, habitats, threats to survival of species, and survey programs. The program is open to the public without charge.

We can learn about the quality of the water in our rivers and streams by observing the health of the species that live in it. Mussels, an important indicator of water quality, are freshwater versions of marine clams: bivalve mollusks that live in fresh water. The Ohio River system has more than 120 different species of the 225 known species in North America. Fifty-five of these reside in the West Virginia portion.

The program will help attendees understand these unique creatures, identify threatened and endangered mussels, and invite interested volunteers to assist in surveys. The evening is sponsored by the Friends of the Hughes River Watershed Association, WVDNR and North Bend State Park.

To learn more about mussels, visit   www.molluskconservation.org/MUSSELS/   or   www.wvdnr.gov

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