ASSESSING RISK TO IMPERILED SPECIES: MODELING FRESHWATER MUSSEL POPULATIONS
Freshwater mussels are a highly diverse and imperiled faunal group; of 296 species currently identified in the US more than 70% are considered threatened or endangered (”listed”), or of special concern. Because of restrictions on testing listed species and the difficulty of working with freshwater mussels, development of predictive methods to better assess potential risk of various aquatic stressors posed to this taxa is paramount. An additional limitation is the lack of physiological and life-history data for many freshwater mussel species. Here we present a trait-based modeling approach to represent freshwater mussel populations with a focus on environmental risk assessment applications. Our model of mussel population dynamics utilizes Dynamic Energy Budget (DEB) theory and individual-based modeling. DEB describes the uptake and allocation of energy for individuals. The generic nature of DEB theory allows for broad applicability across species, even in cases of data scarcity. The flexibility of individual-based modeling facilitates the inclusion of relevant ecological complexities. Ultimately this project aims to improve population modeling approaches for understanding and assessing potential environmental risks for data-sparse endangered species.
Nika Galic (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Syngenta Crop Protection LLC, email@example.com;
Richard Brain (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Syngenta Crop Protection LLC, firstname.lastname@example.org;
Dan Hornbach (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), Macalester College, email@example.com;
Valery Forbes (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Minnesota, firstname.lastname@example.org;
Adrian Moore (Primary Presenter/Author), University of Minnesota, email@example.com;