TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — Federal regulators are proposing to list as threatened two freshwater mussel species native to many eastern U.S. rivers and streams.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Monday that the longsolid and round hickorynut mussels have disappeared from some states and are doing poorly elsewhere.
They're are among roughly 300 species of freshwater mussels across the nation, two-thirds of which are in peril.
The two species are suffering from shrinking and degraded habitat, and invasive newcomers.
Freshwater mussels are important for healthy rivers and streams because they filter out pollutants and sediments as they feed.