The Prairie du Chien dredge material site contains about 100,000 cubic meters of material dredged from the East Channel of the Mississippi Riverin1976. Previous studies in that area suggested a rich molluscan fauna, but most studies were only qualitative or simply observations. Our study of this material was designed to determine the density and diversity of molluscan fauna, to assess changes in the fauna, to identify endemic species previously unreported, and to evaluate the status of the endangered Lampsilis higginsi. Ten cubic meters of dredge material were sieved to recover shells. Molluscan fauna at the site contained38 species of naiades and up to 1,737 identifiable valves per cubic meter. The endangered L. higginsi ranked18th In occurrence, accounted for only 0.52% of the identifiable shells, and averaged about three valves per cubic meter. From a total of 813 kg of naiades and gastropods, 6,339 naiad valves were identified. Five naiad species were collected at the site for the first time, and Eploblasma triquetra had not been reported previously in the Prairie du Chien area. Although the molluscan fauna has changed, the East Channel at Prairie du Chien is obviously suitable for L. higginsi.
Additional publication details
A quantitative analysis of naiad mollusks from the Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin dredge material site on the Mississippi River