Mussels & Clams

Species Description

Freshwater mussels and snails are members of the phylum Mollusca, invertebrate animals with a soft body that is enclosed wholly or in part in a mantel and a shell. Squid, octopuses, oysters, scallops and other shellfish are ocean-dwelling mollusks. There are nearly 300 species of freshwater mussels in North America, with most of these species in the eastern and midwestern United States. This mussel diversity has caused some biologists to call the U.S. "the rain forest of freshwater mussels." In fact, there are more different kinds of freshwater mussels in this country than on the entire African continent!

Fishing Type
Topic Category
Hunting / Fishing Guide
Biological Information
Mussels & Clams

pink heelsplitter

Season Open
  • January 1, 2024 - December 31, 2024

Mussels listed in the Missouri Species and Communities of Conservation Concern Checklist may not be taken or possessed.

Daily and possession limits do not apply to Asiatic clams.

Two shell halves (valves) shall be considered 1 mussel or clam.

Daily limit: 5, combined total of all species (except Asian clams, which may be taken and possessed in any number). This limit applies to live and dead animals.
Possession limit: 10