Content tagged with "Aquatic Invertebrates"

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 Mammoth Spring crayfish.

Mammoth Spring Crayfish

Orconectes marchandi
The Mammoth Spring crayfish has a very localized distribution: In our state, it lives only in the Warm Fork of Spring River, in Oregon County. It is reddish brown, and its broad, powerful pincers have numerous blackish specks on their basal parts.

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maple leaf


Quadrula quadrula
The mapleleaf spawns in the summer, using catfish as a host.

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Photo of a mayfly


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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Meek’s Crayfish

Orconectes meeki
The pincers of Meek’s crayfish are sprinkled with many blackish spots. There is a dark spot near the tubercle at the base of the moveable finger. In Missouri, this rare crayfish occurs in only a few tributaries of Table Rock Lake in Stone County.

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Quadrula metanevra
Finding the monkey’s face in this mussel's shell is left up to the imagination.

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image of Mosquito


There are about 50 species of mosquitoes in our state.
Who likes mosquitoes? Certainly not people! However, mosquitoes have lived on Earth for millions of years, and all that time they’ve been feeding fish with their legions of “wriggler” larvae.

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Actinonaias ligamentina
One of the most widespread and numerous mussels in southern Missouri.

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Photo of a Neosho midget crayfish.

Neosho Midget Crayfish

Orconectes macrus
The Neosho midget crayfish is a subdued mottled brown, with a prominent black band crossing the carapace near its junction with the abdomen. The pincers are broad and powerful. This small, stout crayfish is found in the Neosho stream drainage of southwestern Missouri and northwestern Arkansas.

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Photo of a northern, also called virile, crayfish.

Northern Crayfish (Virile Crayfish)

Oronectes virilis
The northern crayfish is large, reddish-brown or green, and without prominent markings. The pincers are green with orange tips and in adults are conspicuously studded with whitish knobs. Paired dark blotches run lengthwise along the abdomen. This species is widespread.

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