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INTER- AND INTRA-ANNUAL APPLE SNAIL (POMACEA SPP.) EGG MASS PRODUCTION IN LAKE SEMINOLE, GA, USA

The introduction and spread of invasive Pomacea maculata across subtropical and tropical freshwaters around the world represents significant threat to ecological and biological processes. While accurate population estimates are difficult, Pomacea spp. deposit distinct calcareous egg masses above the water line that can be identified to species. In this study, we surveyed deposited egg masses across the range of available emergent surfaces to identify the distribution of a native and introduced Pomacea species in Lake Seminole, a large reservoir in southwestern Georgia. Egg mass counts were used to determine areas of high abundance for each species during peak egg mass production times from 2013-2016. Intra-annual egg mass production was surveyed monthly starting in April 2016. Areas of high P. maculata abundance were used to infer population expansion, including evidence for an invasion wave emanating from the presumed introduction location throughout Lake Seminole. Monthly surveys found egg mass production year-round, previously undocumented in North America. Ongoing production and dispersal of P. maculata in Lake Seminole may result in ecosystem level changes yet unknown, and current research aims to assess these changes.

Nicholas Marzolf (Primary Presenter/Author), J.W. Jones Ecological Research Center, nmarzolf@jonesctr.org;


Chelsea Smith ( Co-Presenter/Co-Author), J.W. Jones Ecological Research Center, csmith@jonesctr.org;


Stephen Golladay ( Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Joseph W Jones Ecological Research Center, sgolla@jonesctr.org;