Mussels may be small, but they are mighty! Join us on May 11th at the Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center, for Mussel Mania, an indoor/outdoor event to honor and appreciate the tiny creatures that call the Delaware Basin home. Did you know these small species that inhabit our local river are some of the most important tools for protecting and preserving our water ways? These mussels, known as bivalves, absorb wave energy, protect salt marshes, trap sediment and reduce bank erosion. They provide our rivers with many ecosystem services such as water filtration, habitat creation and carbon sequestration. Sadly, of the 12 native species in the Delaware River Basin, almost all are considered reduced, threaten or even extinct. The main causes of their decline are loss of habitat and pollution.
However, several local organizations are working to change that. At Mussel Mania, Dr. Danielle Kreeger, Science Director for the Partnerships for the Delaware Estuary, will explain all you need to know about mussels. Lance Butler, Watershed Protection Manager for the Philadelphia Water Department will discuss his team’s work and why these bivalves have piqued our interest. Finally, the Tookany/Tacony-Frankford Watershed Partnership will share the results of last years’ mussel survey, and provide hands on assistance during the afternoon stream examination! The day will end on a delicious note with a beer and (you guessed it) mussels! To learn more you can call 215-685-0721. The cost is $12 , which includes transportation to the stream site, reception and basic supplies. Tickets are available online.