Andrea K. Fritts, postdoctoral research associate at the Illinois Natural History Survey, will present “Mussels, not muscles: A look into the secret lives of freshwater bivalves” as part of the School of Biological Sciences Seminar Series.

When: 4 p.m. Thursday, October 9
Where: 210 Moulton Hall

Abstract of presentation:

Freshwater mussels, sometimes called “rocks with guts,” are an often-underappreciated and highly imperiled group of animals that deserve some time in the limelight. These “rocks” hold numerous surprises, like the way the females use extensions of their body to lure in unsuspecting fish to be hosts for their parasitic larvae. The hard shells of mussels deposit annual growth rings, much like tree growth rings, and the shells of mussels from historic collections can serve as records of long-term environmental change over the past 150 years.