Freshwater Mussel Surveying at Cedarbrook Middle School

Julie Slavet
May 30, 2012

Did you know that freshwater mussels are a critical component of healthy streams? Here at TTF, we’re all about clean water and healthy streams, so we’re teaming up with the Partnership for the Delaware Estuary (PDE) to look for freshwater mussels in creeks and streams in the Tookany/Tacony-Frankford watershed!

A freshwater mussel shellA freshwater mussel shell.

Freshwater mussels filter pollutants out of water, playing an important role in natural ecosystems. However, they are endangered and rarely found in areas where they were once common. Organizations like PDE are working to help them, but the last comprehensive survey of freshwater mussels in the Delaware watershed was done almost 100 years ago… so it’s time to survey again! Collecting and reporting this data will help scientists understand these organisms and find ways to help them make a come back. Read more about PDE’s work with freshwater mussels here and here.

Teamwork!Cedarbrook Middle School students enjoy freshwater mussel surveying.

TTF’s first surveying event with PDE took place at Cedarbrook Middle School in Cheltenham Township. PDE staff taught students and volunteers about freshwater mussels before we all donned waders and headed out to the creek. Check out pictures from the event on our flickr and facebook pages.

Would you like to join our Mussel Surveying Team? Have fun getting wet and muddy — and impress your science teachers next fall! Contact me at or 215-844-8100!

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