The Endangered Tulotoma Snail

Justification

Tulotoma Snails

The tulotoma snail (Tulotoma magnifica) is native to the Coosa and Alabama River systems in Alabama. In 1990, it was listed as endangered because its numbers had declined, presumably due to impoundments submerging much of the shoals on which they had previously existed.

During 1995 and 1999, researchers surveyed the tulotoma snail in each of five tributary sites to determine where they occurred and how many there were. Results of that survey showed that in three of the tributaries the distribution ofTulotoma was greater than previously thought. Continuing survey efforts are required to identify whether populations are remaining stable in the tributaries in which they occur and to determine whether populations occur in even more areas within these tributaries.

 

Objectives

(1) Provide information on the current distribution and range of Tulotoma at five of the Coosa River tributary sites at which it is currently found.

(2) Determine the availability of suitable habitat at these sites.

(3) Identify whether any new populations exist in Alabama’s waters.

Weoka Creek, Elmore County

 

Research

During 1995 and 1999, and 2003 researchers in the Department of Fisheries and Allied Aquaculture visited each of five tributary sites (Ohatchee Creek [Calhoun County], Kelly Creek [St. Clair County], Weogufka and Hatchet creeks [Coosa County], and Choccolocco Creek [Talladega County]) in which Tulotomaoccurred and surveyed them to qualify the distributions and relative abundances of the snail within each tributary. In addition, a new population was discovered at Weoka Creek (Elmore County), which was surveyed and found to be one of the most abundant population that researchers have studied.   Further, Tulotoma at the other five sites were found to have either remained stable or increased between surveys.  Additional work will be conducted during 2006-2007 to survey throughout the Coosa River drainage at sites that would be suitable for Tulotomafor additional populations that may exist but have not yet been identified.

 

Anticipated Impacts

Results from this work will be used in combination with results from previous surveys of these sites to provide as complete a picture as possible of the overall current status of this endangered species, perhaps leading to its eventual removal from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s endangered species list.

 

Principal Investigator

Dennis DeVries
Professor
Auburn University,Department of Fisheries and Allied Aquacultures
devridr@auburn.edu

 

Affiliated Departments and Institutions

Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries

U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service

203 Swingle Hall | Auburn, Alabama 36849 | (334) 844-4786 |
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