Content tagged with "Aquatic Invertebrates"

Chinese Mystery Snail

Cipangopaludina chinensis malleata
The Chinese mystery snail is an invasive species quickly taking over urban waters throughout the state. These Asian snails are popular with aquarium hobbyists, and some people appreciate them as food.

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Photo of a coldwater crayfish.

Coldwater Crayfish

Orconectes eupunctus
The coldwater crayfish has a very localized distribution in the Eleven Point and Spring River drainages. It is stout, with a blue-green head and pincers and dark, rust-brown carapace. It is an imperiled species.

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image of Crane Fly clinging to a twig

Crane Flies

There are over 500 species of crane flies in North America.
Many people are frightened of crane flies, which resemble huge mosquitoes. But crane flies don’t bite or suck blood. In fact, as adults, most of them don’t have mouths at all!

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Photo of a spothanded crayfish viewed from above on white background.


Cambarus, Orconectes, Procambarus, and 3 other genera in MO.
Crayfish are freshwater aquatic invertebrates that look a lot like small lobsters, to which they are related. There are about 35 species of crayfish in Missouri.

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Photo of an adult damselfly on a twig next to water.


Species in the suborder Zygoptera
Like their close relatives the dragonflies, damselflies have long bodies, two pairs of long, membranous, finely veined wings, and predaceous aquatic larvae that have extendible mouthparts. Damselflies typically hold their wings together, above the body.

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Truncilla truncata
A common mussel in some areas, deertoe have decorative green markings.

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Photo of a devil crayfish.

Devil Crayfish

Cambarus diogenes
The powerfully built devil crayfish is usually a uniform olive or tan, without obvious blotches or spots. Some, in southeast Missouri, are turquoise blue with red highlights. It digs underground burrows, often with mud chimneys, and has a wide distribution.

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Digger Crayfish

Fallicambarus fodiens
The digger crayfish is heavy-bodied, reddish tan, with a pale, iridescent stripe along the midline of the abdomen and short, broad pincers. In Missouri, it is known from only a few locations, mostly in southeastern counties.

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Photo of a male Banded Pennant dragonfly


Species in the suborder Anisoptera
Like their close relatives the damselflies, dragonflies have long bodies, two pairs of long, membranous, finely veined wings, and predaceous aquatic larvae. Dragonflies typically hold their wings stretched outward, horizontally.

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Photo of eastern dobsonfly

Eastern Dobsonfly (Hellgrammite)

Corydalus cornutus
Adult dobsonflies are huge and mothlike, with large wings and a weak, fluttery flight. The fiercely predaceous aquatic larvae, called hellgrammites, are well-known to anglers, who often use them as bait.

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