Threatened Mussel Found at Town Creek
The Town Creek Mitigation Bank Site (TCMS) is part of the Flint River Mitigation Bank FRMB, a privately run, for-profit, mitigation bank. The mitigation site totals 639.66 acres within the Upper Flint River drainage basin.
Ecological Solutions, Inc. conducted a mussel survey at the TCMS on November 30, 2007. The purpose of the survey was to determine if threatened and endangered mussel species were present within the reach of the Flint River that forms the eastern boundary of the mitigation site. The survey was conducted primarily as a presence/absence survey of the listed species and not to acquire actual quantitative data.
A four person crew utilized tactile grubbing techniques along with snorkeling to conduct the survey. The mussel team. which was headed by Carson Stringfellow, of Columbus State University and Dean Wilder, Ecological Solutions surveyed approximately 800 to 900 meters of the Flint River and found the purple bankclimber (Elliptoideus sloatianus), a federally threatened mussel species. A total of 13 E. sloatianus were collected along with 5 washboards (Megalonaias nervosa), 1 southern rainbow (Villosa vibex), 2 little spectaclecases (Villosa lienosa), 2 southern fatmuckets (Lampsilis straminea), and 7 yellow sandshells (L. teres).
The purple bankclimber (Elliptoideus sloatianus) is a species of bivalve in the Unionidae family. It is found in the Flint River but is threatened by habitat loss.
Dean Wilder, Senior Ecologist with Ecological Solutions explained that “The USFWS has the purple bankclimber (Elliptoideus sloatianus) listed as a “Threatened” species with the likelihood of becoming “Endangered” in the foreseeable future due to habitat modification, sedimentation, and water quality degradation. Finding a population of bankclimbers in the section of Flint River forming a boundary of the Town Creek MB is encouraging for the species. At least we know this section of river is now going to be protected.”
For more information on mitigation credit sales please contact Mr. Frank James with the Flint River Mitigation Bank at 770-461-8603