Mussel of the

Page last updated
31 August 2012

Mussel of the Month

The September 2012 Mussel of the Month is Lasmigona complanata. Lasmigona is a genus of eight species, widespread in eastern North America.

Lasmigona complanata
Figure from Küster (1861, pl. 65).

In honor of the MUSSEL Project Web Site moving to the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (see the latest news), we have chosen a Mussel of the Month described from Wisconsin: Lasmigona complanata (Barnes, 1823).

D.W. Barnes (1823) described 26 species of freshwater mussels, many from the Interior and Great Lakes basins of North America. A good number of those names were in common usage during the 19th and early 20th centuries -- during the period when the works of Rafinesque (1820, 1831, etc.) were ignored as so much jibba jabba. Once Frierson (1927) and others championed the recognition of Rafinesque's taxa, only a few of mussel names introduced by Barnes retained their priority: Lasmigona complanta and Toxolasma parvum.


Phylum Mollusca
Class Bivalvia
Subclass Palaeoheterodonta
Order Unionoida

Family UNIONIDAE Rafinesque, 1820
Subfamily UNIONINAE s.s.
Tribe ANODONTINI Rafinesque, 1820

Genus Lasmigona Rafinesque, 1831

Species Lasmigona complanata (Barnes, 1823)

To find out more about Lasmigona and the freshwater mussel species described by Barnes, check out:
  • Barnes, D.W. 1823. On the genera Unio and Alasmodonta; with introductory remarks. American Journal of Science and Arts 6 (1-2): 107-127; 258-280.
  • Frierson, L.S. 1927. A Classified and Annotated Check List of the North American Naiades : 111 pp.
  • Küster, H.C. 1861. Die Flussperlmuscheln (Unio et Hyria). Systematisches Conchylien-Cabinet von Martini und Chemnitz Fortgesetzt von Hofrath Dr. G. v. Schubert und Professor Dr. J.A. Wagner 9(2): 161-256, pl. 35, 46-86.
  • Rafinesque, C.S. 1820. Monographie des coquilles bivalves fluviatiles de la Riviere Ohio, contenant douze genres et soixante-huit especes. Annales Générales des Sciences Physiques 5 (13): 287-322.
  • Rafinesque, C.S. 1831. Continuation of a monograph of the bivalve shells of the river Ohio and other rivers of the western states. By Prof. C.S. Rafinesque. (Published at Brussels, September, 1920) Containing 46 species, from No. 76 to no. 121. Including an appendix on some bivalve shells of the rivers of Hindostan, with a supplement on the fossil bivalves of the Western states, and the Tulosites, a new genus of fossils. 8 pp.
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