Biologists from the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (VDGIF), and partners from Virginia Tech, the Nature Conservancy, and the USFWS stocked thousands of mussels into the Clinch River, Russell County. The Clinch River has more species of endangered freshwater mussels than any other river in North America. Elementary school students from Cleveland, VA, participated in the event, and learned about the many functions of mussels, including providing habitat for fish, becoming food for many other animals, and filtering and cleaning the water in our streams and rivers. Over 3,500 federally-endangered mussels were produced at the Department’s Aquatic Wildlife Conservation Center in Marion, Virginia.
Where is the country’s most diverse river of life? Check out this Nature Conservancy video on the Clinch River in southwest Virginia, home to our nation’s most diverse mussel and fish species!