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Content tagged with "aquatic"

Photo of several prosobranch pond snails crawling on a rock.

Gilled Aquatic Snails (Prosobranch Pond Snails)

Over 20 Missouri species in former subclass Prosobranchia
Gilled snails are one of two main groups of aquatic snails in Missouri (the other group is the "lunged" snails). Gilled snails, or prosobranchs, breathe with gills and possess a hard trapdoor-like operculum. They are most common in the Ozarks.

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Photo of pulmonate snail crawling on rock

Lunged Aquatic Snail (Pulmonate Pond Snail)

Unliked gilled aquatic snails, lunged aquatic snails breathe via a lunglike pulmonary cavity. They also lack an operculum, the hard horny “trapdoor” that closes when the animal retracts into the shell.

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Photo of pulmonate snail crawling on rock out of water

Lunged Aquatic Snail (Pulmonate Pond Snail)

Many pulmonate snails crawl to the water surface to take in air, but others can stay underwater all the time. This snail was crawling on a dry rock on the edge of a creek. Except for in the Ozarks, pulmonate snails predominate in most of the aquatic regions in our state.

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Photo of pulmonate snail crawling on rock

Lunged Aquatic Snails (Pulmonate Pond Snails)

Over 30 Missouri species in former subclass Pulmonata
This is one of the two broad categories of aquatic snails in Missouri (the other is the gilled snails, or prosobranchs). Pulmonate snails breathe via a lunglike pulmonary cavity, and they lack a hard trapdoor-like operculum. Except for in the Ozarks, pulmonate snails predominate in most of the aquatic regions in our state.

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Photo of a mayfly

Mayflies

There are hundreds of species in North America.
The mayflies are a fascinating group of insects. The nymphs live from months to years under water, breathing through gills, and the adults fly around in the air, mating, living for only a day or two.

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Photo of a predaceous diving beetle

Predaceous Diving Beetles (Water Tigers)

Species in the beetle family Dytiscidae
Like many aquatic insects, these large oval beetles prey voraciously on other aquatic organisms. Excellent swimmers, they fly well, too, and are often attracted to lights.

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Ramshorn Snails (Wheel Snails; Planorbids)

Gyraulus, Helisoma, Menetus, Micromenetus, Planorbula spp.
This group of freshwater snails is easy to identify at a glance, because the shell is a flat, disklike coil. Like other pulmonate snails, they lack an operculum (a hard horny “trapdoor” that other types of aquatic snails possess that closes when the animal retracts into the shell).

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Photograph of a spotted predaceous diving beetle

Spotted Predaceous Diving Beetle

There are many, many different species of beetles, including hundreds of different predaceous diving beetles. If you are having trouble identifying them, congratulate yourself if you can say for certain that it's "some kind of a beetle"!

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Photo of a whirligig beetle viewed from above

Whirligig Beetles

Species in the beetle family Gyrinidae
Groups of these aquatic beetles swim on the surface of water in quick, random patterns, searching for food. They have two pairs of eyes—one pair above the water, and one pair below—which helps them to quickly and accurately capture their prey.

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