Spengler's freshwater mussel

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Spengler's freshwater mussel
Margaritifera auricularia shell.jpg
A shell of Spengler's freshwater mussel from Spain
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca
Class: Bivalvia
Order: Unionoida
Family: Margaritiferidae
Genus: Margaritifera
Species: M. auricularia
Binomial name
Margaritifera auricularia
Spengler, 1793

Unio auricularius Spengler, 1793
Pseudunio auricularia (Spengler, 1793)
Pseudunio auricularius auricularius (Spengler, 1793)[2]
Unio sinuatus Lamarck, 1819

Spengler's freshwater mussel scientific name (Margaritifera auricularia or Pseudunio auricularia) is a species of European freshwater mussel, an aquatic bivalve mollusk in the family Margaritiferidae, the freshwater pearl mussels. It is named after Lorenz Spengler.


Spengler's freshwater mussel, a subfossil valve from the Holocene Scheldt deposits, in Belgium

Large shells are up to 180 mm in length.


There are different opinions on the taxonomy of this species.

The species was originally described as Unio auricularius Spengler, 1793.

When it is placed in the genus Margaritifera Schumacher, 1816, it is considered to be:

  • Margaritifera auricularia (Spengler, 1793)

At other times it is placed in the genus Pseudunio F. Haas, 1910, in which case it is known as:

  • Pseudunio auricularia (Spengler, 1793)

Sometimes it is given the masculine gender:

  • Pseudunio auricularius auricularius (Spengler, 1793)


It is found in:


The fish hosts for the glochidium larvae of this species are: Salaria fluviatilis, Gambusia holbrooki, Acipenser baerii, Acipenser naccarii and Acipenser sturio.[4]

The hosts for this species were unknown for a long time: as recently as 1998 they were still not known.[6]


  1. ^ Prie, V. (2010). "Margaritifera auricularia". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
  2. ^ a b Checklist of France. CLECOM. Check List of European COntinental Mollusca. Göteborg Natural History Museum (Göteborgs Naturhistoriska Museum). Last change: 23 May 2008. Accessed 5 November 2008.
  3. ^ Araujo, R. & Ramos, M. A. 1998. Margaritifera auricularia (Unionoidea, Margaritiferidae), the giant freshwater pearl mussel rediscovered in Spain. Graellsia, 54: 129-130.
  4. ^ a b c F. Welter Schultes. 2008. Margaritifera auricularia. AnimalBase. Last modified 23-10-2008. Accessed 5 November 2008.
  5. ^ a b Ložek V. 1964. Quartärmollusken der Tschechoslowakei. Rozpravy Ústředního ústavu geologického, Vol. 31, Nakladatelství ČSAV, Praha, volume 31, 374 pp., 32 tables, 4 supplements, page 317. (in German)
  6. ^ Araujo, R. & Ramos, M. A. 1998. Description of the glochidium of Margaritifera auricularia (Spengler, 1793) (Bivalvia, Unionidae). Philosophical Transactions of The Royal Society of London B, 353: 1553-1559.

External links[edit]

Further reading[edit]

Araujo, R., Bragado, D. & Ramos, M. A. 2001. Identification of the river blenny, Salaria fluviatilis, as a host to the glochidia of Margaritifera auricularia. Journal of Molluscan Studies, 67: 128-129.

  • Araujo, R., Cámara N. & Ramos, M. A. Glochidium metamorphosis in the endangered freshwater mussel Margaritifera auricularia (Spengler, 1793): A histological and scanning electron microscopy study. Journal of Morphology. 254: 259-265.
  • Araujo, R., Quirós, M. & Ramos, M. A. 2003. Laboratory propagation and culturing of juveniles of the endangered freshwater mussel Margaritifera auricularia (Spengler, 1793). Journal of Conchology. 38(1): 53-60.
  • Araujo, R. 2004 Two overlooked host fish species of Margaritifera auricularia (Bivalvia, Unionoidea, Margaritiferidae). Basteria, 67: 113.
  • Vallejo, A., & Araujo, R. The Historical misidentification of Margaritifera auricularia for M. margaritifera (Bivalvia, Unionoidea) explained by their iconography. Malacologia. (in press)
  • Araujo, R. & Ramos, M. A. 2001. Action Plan for Margaritifera auricularia. Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats (Bern Convention). Council of Europe Publishing. Nature and environment, No. 117. Strasbourg. 28 pp.
  • Araujo, R. & Ramos, M. A. 2001. Life-History data on the virtually unknown Margaritifera auricularia. En: Ecological Studies, Vol. 145. "Ecology and Evolution of the Freshwater Mussels Unionoida" ed. by G. Bauer and K. Wächtler. Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. 143-152. Por invitación.
  • Araujo, R. & Ramos, M. A. 2001. Margaritifera auricularia. En: Los Invertebrados no Insectos de la "Directiva Hábitat" en España. Serie Técnica. Ed. Organismo Autónomo Parques Nacionales (Ministerio de Medio Ambiente). Madrid. 93-101.