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Tennessee Natives- Treasures you can help protect BY: Melissa Sandrene and Jeff Simmons.

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Presentation on theme: "Tennessee Natives- Treasures you can help protect BY: Melissa Sandrene and Jeff Simmons."— Presentation transcript:

1 Tennessee Natives- Treasures you can help protect BY: Melissa Sandrene and Jeff Simmons

2 Freshwater Fauna of Tennessee Tennessee contains the most diverse aquatic fauna in the United States Tennessee is home to: ~300 native fish species (Most diverse in U.S.) Bluemask Darter Paddlefish Barrens Topminnow Blackside Dace Including…..

3 Bluemask Darter Etheostoma (Doration) sp. Only 4 populations remain These are benthic fish, they like to live on the bottom of streams Eat insects Federally Endangered Species

4 Males develop a deep blue color band that looks like a mask in the spring time to attract female darters

5 Paddlefish Polyodon spathula Also called spoonbill catfish in Tennessee Ancient big river fish Rostrum

6 Daphnia Filter Feeders Gill rakers Cladoceran

7 Barrens topminnow Fundulus julisia Lives in small springs with lots of aquatic plants In the spring Male topminnows develop attractive blue and green scale colors to attract females Tends to swims at the surface of the water

8 The Barrens topminnow eats Amphipods SnailsMayflies Midges

9 Blackside Dace Phoxinus cumberlandensis Rare species and listed as threatened species Deep red colored belly Found above Cumberland Falls in cool water pools with lots of tree and bush covering

10 Breeding males have tubercles…little fleshy knobs that grow on the head and body Tubercles

11 Algae Diatoms Blackside Dace Feed On…

12 Freshwater Fauna of Tennessee Tennessee is home to: ~120 species of freshwater mussels (2nd to Alabama) Including….. Rainbow shell Pistolgrip Plain pocketbook Shiny Pigtoe

13 70% of all freshwater mussel species in the United States are threatened due to destruction of their adult habitat because of dams and rivers being dredged

14 The Freshwater Mussel Life Cycle Adult Female Mussel develops a pouch of eggs inside her shell The eggs develop into Glochidia

15 The Mother mussel must set the glochidia free on a living host The host is often a fish Some mussels are picky guests they will only allow specific kinds of fish be their host The glochidia will attach to the fishs fins and gills Like a butterfly the glochidia will form a cocoon… called a cyst on the fish

16 The glochidia will stay on the fish for several weeks. Then it will mature and fall off of the fish and land on the bottom of the stream or river It is now a juvenile mussel! Will grow into an adult


18 How Does A Mussel Find A Host Fish? They use the soft tissue that is on the inside of their shell….called the mantle. The shape, color, and how the mussel moves its mantle can mimics other animals Mantle

19 What animals do these mussel mantles look like? The fish thinks the mantle Is food! When the fish gets close to take a bite… Mom mussel deposits her glochidia onto the host fish!

20 Rainbow-shell Villosa iris The smooth shell indicates that this mussel is found in muddy or sandy streams, lakes, and rivers

21 Pistolgrip Tritogonia verrucosa The rough and bumpy shell indicates that this mussel is found in fast moving water that has gravel and rock

22 Plain Pocketbook Lampsilis cardium Some mussels can live to be 100 years old! Shiny Pigtoe Fusconaia cor

23 River Otter Raccoon Muskrat Animals that EAT Freshwater Mussels

24 They suck water in and use their gills (hair looking), like a strainer, to remove the food from the water Freshwater Mussels Are Filter Feeders So FW mussels clean the water by eating!

25 Bacteria Algae Dead Pieces of Leaves (Detritus) Freshwater Mussels Eat

26 Freshwater Fauna of Tennessee Tennessee is also home to: 76 species of crayfish One of the richest assemblages of aquatic insects in North America &

27 Dragonflies and Damselflies Have sharp teeth on their mouthparts Helpful Predators Eat Mosquitoes The adults have wings to fly

28 Dragon Fly Nymphs Important to the aquatic food web Are indicators of the health of stream environment

29 Stoneflies Nymph Adult Found in clean and cold water streams Shredders- they eat live and dead plant material Males drum their bellies to attract females

30 All these organisms are dependent on each other and when one component is lost….all are lost

31 Why is Tennessee so Diverse? Tennessees rich aquatic fauna is a result of six major rock and water barriers that create unique biodiversity in the east, central, and western areas of the state. What is biodiversity?

32 Blue Ridge Region East TN Rock formations are mostly gneiss, sandstone and granite Waters are clear, cool and lack aquatic vegetation (low prod. ) Streams are steep with many falls, large boulders, and fast flowing areas

33 Cumberland Plateau Central/East TN Sandstone, shale, and coal deposits Mostly forested areas with deep and curving streams of clear water that are not very productive Many waterfalls: Fall Creek Falls, Burgess Falls, and Cumberland Falls

34 Highland Rim and Nashville Basin Central TN Mostly chert and limestone rock formations Medium to low productivity with seasonal vegetation Many cave and spring habitats and several large rivers

35 Coastal Plain (Mississippi Embayment) West TN Mainly sand, clay, and silt soils This area is the main agricultural region in TN (ex. soybean & cotton) Aquatic habitats suffer because of forest clearing, pesticide runoff, and channelization

36 Major Threats to Freshwater Biodiversity Dams Siltation and Erosion Poor land Practices and Deforestation Pollutants from industry and people

37 Dams Only 2% of the rivers in the U.S. remain free-flowing and relatively undeveloped Red Dots are TVA Dam locations

38 Norris Dam (historic photo) Cordell Hull Dam Tennessee has over 30 dams

39 Ways that Dams Damage Rivers They remove the water needed for a healthy stream Prevent the flow of plants, nutrients, and fish Change the water temperature Disrupts the natural seasonal flow of water and this can effect the growth and reproductive cycle of many species Slowing flows allows silt to collect on the river bottom and this buries mussel and fish habitat Fish are cut up in the power turbines

40 Siltation Silt can cover the healthy eggs of fish. If the eggs are covered they cant get oxygen to grow…so they die Silt clogs the gills of filter feeders and increases the risk of small aquatic animals being eaten by predators

41 Erosion Increases sedimentation Destroys vegetation that fish and other animals use as their homes and the cover they use to hide from predators

42 Poor land Practices Deforestation Removing trees increases erosion and it harms the habitats that fish, mussels, and insects live Cattle and other livestock trample and pollute stream habitats Increase siltation and erosion destroying wildlife habitat

43 Pollutants from Industry and People Toxic chemicals harm aquatic animals and us! Trash hurts aquatic animals and it destroys their homes

44 How can you get involved? Care about your environment! Dont litter Recycle bottles, plastic, tin, and aluminum containers Talk with friends and family about the neat animals that are native to Tennessee Keep livestock (cows, pigs and goats) fenced in out of the river Volunteer for stream cleanups

45 Questions?

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