The Shinyrayed pocketbook is a freshwater mussel that can reach a length of 3.3 inches (8.5 centimeters). This species has a smooth, elliptical shaped shell that is yellowish brown with green rays on the outer shell and a white inner shell. The left valve has two large teeth and the right valve has one large, flattened tooth (University of Georgia 2008, Florida Natural Areas Inventory 2001). The shiny rayed pocketbook is a filter feeder – filters food from the water, such as plankton and detritus (dead organic matter). Males release sperm in rivers with low to moderate currents and the females will receive the sperm through a siphon. Eggs are fertilized in the female’s shell and the glochidia (larvae) release into the water when mature. Glochidia are released from late May through July. Shinyrayed Pocketbook Mussel mate when the water temperature range from 68°F-74.3°F. To attract host fish, the shiny rayed pocketbook produces a long rope of glochidia (larvae) called a super conglutinate. Its resemblance to a fish attracts the host fish to eat the super conglutinate, which allows the glochidia to attach to the fish’s gills. The largemouth bass and spotted bass are the primary hosts for the shiny rayed pocketbook (University of Georgia 2008). When the larvae metamorphose into juvenile mussels they release from the fish and settle into their primary habitat. Habitat & Distribution Shinyrayed pocketbooks inhabit medium sized rivers and creeks with a clear or sandy silt floor. This species can be found in the Apalachicola, Chipola and Ochlockonee rivers in Florida, while also being found in the Chattahoochee, Flint, and Ochlockonee rivers in Georgia (Florida Natural Areas Inventory 2001).
Everglades Eco-Safari Half Day Tour