Conservation of Mollusks By: Leah Bilski, Cosmo Kunzelmann, Connor Siegel, Jenna Behnke, Brigid Carr
Two Main Conservation Issues • Changing Environment • Ocean acidification breaks down shells • Loss of habitat due to humans • Invasive species • Over Consumption by Humans • People eat mollusks faster than they can repopulate • Shell collectors kill mollusks to clean and • sell the shells
Conservation Status of Mollusks • With 41% of the 736 documented extinctions of all animal species, the number of mollusks exceeds that of any other major taxonomic group. • Most documented endangered mollusk species are non marine (they live in freshwater or terrestrial environments). • The level of threat is poorly documented and almost certainly underestimated: a very small fraction (less than 2%) of known molluscan species has had its conservation status properly assessed.
Conservation and the Chesapeake Bay Oysters are a keystone species in the chesapeake bay They are crucial to their ecosystem because they filter the water they inhabit and purify it, which allows other organisms to inhabit the same waters. As overfishing desimates the American oyster population in the Chesapeake Bay, the water quality has steadily decreased. Other organisms like the blue crab,horseshoe crabs, sea turtles, eels, dolphins, rays, seahorses, and jellyfish rely on the presence of the American oyster to survive.
Bay Scallops • Occured in Florida from West Palm beach to Northwest Florida • Today, Florida’s bay scallops occur in isolated populations scattered along its west coast, and the majority are found in nearshore seagrass beds • Scallops are sensitive to changing environmental conditions such as seagrass losses, increases in freshwater and loosening of sediments. • Each year, a local population must produce enough offspring to replenish itself or receive offspring from neighboring populations to remain stable
Land Snail in the Everglades and Florida Keys -African Land Snail-INVASIVE SPECIES -78,000 giant African Land Snails have been caught in the past year in Florida (2012). -One of the most damaging snails in the world. -Eats 500 types of plants and can cause structural damage. -It can also carry a parasite that can lead to meningitis in humans. -They lay up to 1,200 eggs per year and live for nine years. -Can grow up to 7 inches or more. source= http://www.heraldtribune.com/article/20120905/WIRE/120909802?p=1&tc=pg
References • http://myfwc.com/research/saltwater/mollusc/bay-scallops/information/ • http://www.actionbioscience.org/biodiversity/parent.html