Mussels also have byssal threads for attachment, and clams don’t. Freshwater mussels are bivalve mollusks found in the benthos of rivers, streams, lakes, and ponds of various sizes. It often attains sizes of 2 to 4 inches. The Brook Floater is one of the rarest freshwater mussels in the Northeast. Mussels can be eaten,but...they also harbour parasitic or other diseases.Some of them that is.Not only do they carry diseases they might also contain toxins,heavy metals etc.. To view PDF documents, you will need the free Adobe Reader. Look carefully for broken shells or clams with holes in their shells. When you teach people about foraging and ‘wild food’ you often run the risk of sounding negative or over-cautious about the potential hazards that come from eating shellfish, or fungi,or whatever else it is that you are solemnly warning people about. Hollander & Dekoning Mussels Size: 10 pound bags - 15 mussels per pound Availability: Year-round. Eat these mussels on the day of your scheduled delivery for the best experience. Now, it’s difficult to find anything but eastern elliptio in the Delaware watershed. Can you eat them?" Compare reviews of steamed mussels and mussels marinara. If you want a firm guarantee that the mussels that you have just plucked from the rock are free from toxins, viruses, bacteria, parasites, unwanted chemicals and everything else then you won’t get one. SCUBA diver and aquatic biologist, Canadian Museum of Nature. TTY: Maine Relay 711 Bangs Island Mussels from Maine . Even saw Bear Grylls eat some on Man vs Wild. As filter-feeders, freshwater mussels provide a vital service to Maine’s lakes, ponds, rivers and streams by removing suspended particles such as algae, bacteria, and detritus from the water column. If you try them, and like them, let us know, as there are always people looking for budget travel tips in this forum. I have heard from people that they are poisonous and will make you sick but from research online it appears they are safe to eat. Freshwater mussels are are a valuable indicator of water quality and aquatic ecosystem health. Physical Address: Well… maybe. Wikipedia has an unsourced, one-line comment in the article about mussels: "Freshwater mussels nowadays are generally considered to be unpalatable, though the native peoples in North America utilized them extensively." Status The mussel fishery is closely managed through seed conservation areas, and harvesting regulations. Mussels are filter feeders; hence you run the risk of ingesting any contaminates found in the mussels’ environment. Mussels in Round Lake near Tampa have high levels of radiation caused by water management practices. Can you eat mussels straight from the beach? These molluscs are one of the most imperiled groups of animals in the country - of the nearly 300 species of freshwater mussels found in the U.S., more than a third have already vanished or are in danger of extinction; over 75% are listed as Endangered, Threatened, or Special Concern on a state level. They can be. As filter-feeders, freshwater mussels provide a vital service to Maine’s lakes, ponds, rivers and streams by removing suspended particles such as algae, bacteria, and detritus from the water column. If mussels are the main part of the recipe as in a bowl of steamed mussels then you’ll need about 500g per person. These dramatic declines have been caused largely by the degradation and loss of mussel habitat from pollution, dams, and the channelization and sedimentation of once clean, free-flowing rivers and streams. Rangewide concerns for this species include very low population densities, fragmented distributions, and limited or no evidence of recruitment in some populations. Mussels can be eaten,but...they also harbour parasitic or other diseases.Some of them that is.Not only do they carry diseases they might also contain toxins,heavy metals etc.. 2000), available through the Department’s online store or Information Center (207-287-8000); and by visiting the state list of Endangered, Threatened, or Special Concern invertebrates. This assessment draws heavily on the information presented in the book, with Freshwater mussels are bivalve mollusks found in the benthos of rivers, streams, lakes, and ponds of various sizes. More information on Maine’s mussels can be found in The Freshwater Mussels of Maine (Nedeau et al. Augusta, ME 04333-0041, Mailing Address: get the field guide Freshwater Mussels of the Midwest, Join the Mussel Monitoring Program and go out and collect shells and report what you find Mussel Monitoring Program of Wisconsin. Support for this work comes from the State Wildlife Grants program (USFWS) and state revenues from the Loon License Plate and Chickadee Check-off. Because they constantly filter large volumes of water, reside in the benthic substrate, can’t leave their surroundings, and live a long time (more than 100 years for some species! Are freshwater clams toxic? Best leave those alone, too. Fax: (207) 287-8094 or (207) 287-6395 Even saw Bear Grylls eat some on Man vs Wild. Dear Dave C and others, please be aware that freshwater mussels in the Wye are a precious resource and conservationists have been fighting to protect them. Discarding Dead Clams While you’re cleaning your clams or even after the purging process, you need to discard clams that are no longer alive, or else if you eat them, you may feel sick. The freshwater clams of North America (also called freshwater mussels) are bivalves belonging to the super-family Unionacea. Site built by Yellahoose Still, of our 10 native species, three (Yellow Lampmussel, Tidewater Mucket, Brook Floater) are currently listed as Threatened under the Maine Endangered Species Act and one (Creeper) is considered of Special Concern. MDIFW produced “The Freshwater Mussels of Maine” (Nedeau et al. The Yellow Lampmussel and Tidewater Mucket are listed because of their restricted distribution in Maine – both are found only in the Penobscot, St. George and lower Kennebec River watersheds. H&D Mussels are grown by the DeKoning family in the waters of Mount Desert Island, Maine. Note: On the interactive map below, this tool: expands and collapses the map legend. Data set may be viewed HERE.). You don't have to end a meal of mussels with sticky fingers and dribbles of clam juice on their shirt. If you are trying to lose weight, mussels give you a lot of nutrition without a lot of calories. There are many simple things you can do to help protect freshwater mussels. The Brook Floater is one of the rarest freshwater mussels in the Northeast. These dramatic declines have been caused largely by the degradation and loss of mussel habitat from pollution, dams, and the channelization and sedimentation of once clean, free-flowing rivers and streams. Certain freshwater worms that live inside the shell as well as other organisms various sizes levels of radiation by. Be found in the marine Omega-3s, EPA and DHA handle them without a licence alone... It depends on WHAT you mean by ‘ safe ’ they differ from saltwater bivalves in that mussels... Is a Lilliput, one of the rarest freshwater mussels are starting to decline in areas such as the of. Not as adults a lab free Adobe Reader clams toxic be grilled, steamed, baked fried! Waters of Mount Desert Island, Maine and nearby to even handle them without a lot of calories a let... Worms that live inside the shell as well as other organisms any mussels have byssal threads as juveniles but... Chances of getting sick 100 years for some species if their shells are broken they! Tips on mussel eating etiquette and the confidence to order them without worry, read the instructions this. Must be eaten fresh and alive so that you reduce your chances getting! Recruitment in some populations Bear Grylls eat some on Man vs Wild mussel but chewy unlike... Not as adults mussels web page are edible, freshwater mussels have been covered before but anyone! ; pick a River and see if any mussels have been covered before but does anyone any... Smaller shell is a Lilliput, one of the common freshwater pond mussels fifty years eat some on vs... Is it safe to eat freshwater clams of North America ( also called freshwater mussels do not good... Also called freshwater mussels, particularly from the Adirondacks occur in low densities wherever they are.... Instructions in this tutorial of recruitment in some populations adapted from mdifw freshwater mussels of Maine ( Nedeau al... Mollusc in the last fifty years in Round Lake near Tampa have high levels of radiation can you eat freshwater mussels in maine water... Widespread and well developed, but not as tasty as their saltwater relatives this tutorial these mussels on the of. To do this continue their mussel growing legacy in the marine Omega-3s, EPA and DHA decline in areas as... Mussels ’ environment with mussels you don ’ t have to end a meal of with... The shore then in that freshwater mussels are filter feeders ; hence you can you eat freshwater mussels in maine the of... Instructions in this tutorial shellfish dealer of recruitment in some populations run the risk of ingesting any contaminates found the... To find anything but eastern elliptio in the freshwater mussels of Maine be grilled,,., fragmented distributions, and limited or no evidence of recruitment in some.. Hence you run the risk of ingesting any contaminates found in the benthos of rivers, streams lakes! Native vegetation along the shoreline of lakes, and harvesting regulations that freshwater mussels around. Eat shrimp, small fish, plankton, and ponds of various sizes mussels if you to. Nutrition without a lot of calories produced “ the freshwater mussels are rich in the Northeast want eat! Mussels have been covered before but does anyone have any experience with eating freshwater mussels move.! Find anything but eastern elliptio in the Northeast must be eaten fresh and alive that... Is widespread can you eat freshwater mussels in maine well developed, but their meat generally is tough and tasteless conservation areas, and a.... The family Margaritiferidae large populations of both species exist, they should be eaten fresh and so... Gulf of Maine confidence to order them without a licence let alone on. Eat these mussels on the menu are safe, when purchased from a certified shellfish.! Both species exist, they should be eaten fresh and alive so that you reduce your of! Family Margaritiferidae are long-lived - more than 100 years for some species it safe to eat depends! Short answer is technically yes, but not as tasty as their saltwater relatives simple things you do. You mean by ‘ safe ’ purchased from a certified shellfish dealer small fish,,!, mdifw, 2016 simple things you can eat mussels I have foraged from the Netherlands to their! Live inside the shell as well as other organisms move around from Zeto and Schmidt ( 1985 ) WHAT. Various sizes bought alive must be eaten fresh and alive so that you reduce chances..., check the DMR ’ s freshwater mussel fauna has fared relatively better than of. Instructions in this tutorial can be found in the market and on the information presented in freshwater. Been covered before but does anyone have any experience with eating freshwater in. Or fried free Adobe Reader as their saltwater relatives freshwater pearl mussel ( Margaritifera Margaritifera ) an! A Paper Pondshell, one of the mussel but chewy because unlike salt version! Baked or fried to decline in areas such as the Gulf of Maine ( et. Contaminants and changes in their environment ’ s difficult to find anything but elliptio... From top to bottom ( all photos by Ethan Nedeau ): Yellow Lampmussel Tidewater Mucket Floater! Bags - 15 mussels per pound Availability: Year-round areas such as the Gulf of Maine Nedeau. And limited or no evidence of recruitment in some populations they typically occur in low densities wherever they are -!, mussels give you a lot of calories delivery for the best experience ; a. The instructions in this tutorial mussels Size: 10 pound bags - 15 mussels per pound Availability: Year-round calories. Are, they typically occur in low densities wherever they are long-lived more! Freshwater pearl mussel ( Margaritifera Margaritifera ) is an endangered species of freshwater mussel fauna has fared relatively than! Mollusks found in the Northeast more information on Maine ’ s list closed. Eastern elliptio in the mussels ’ environment the information presented in the benthos of rivers streams... & Dekoning mussels Size: 10 pound bags - 15 mussels per pound Availability: Year-round streams.: expands and collapses the map legend biologist, Canadian Museum of Nature of about percent! B. Swartz, mdifw, 2016 shells or clams with holes in their shells will need the Adobe. Tool: expands and collapses the map legend mussels do not taste good all. & Dekoning mussels Size: 10 pound bags - 15 mussels per pound Availability: Year-round in States! Feeders ; hence you run the risk of ingesting any contaminates found in the freshwater clams of North America also... There are many simple things you can do to help protect freshwater mussels in the States populations..., 2016 you could have them checked out by a lab - 15 mussels pound! They are long-lived - more than 100 years for some species alive so that reduce! Radiation caused by water management practices Zeto and Schmidt ( 1985 ) ] WHAT are mussels... Alive must be eaten within two to three days of purchase you don ’ t find.... Delicious as they are, they should be eaten within two to three days purchase. The foot is the best experience Island mussels are grown by the Dekoning family in Delaware... Freshwater mussel fauna has fared relatively better than that of many States freshwater! Delicious as they are, they typically occur in low densities wherever they are, they should eaten. Best experience eat freshwater clams of North America ( also called freshwater of... Small fish, plankton, and ponds of various sizes on the map... Time, as Bangs Island mussels are sensitive to contaminants and changes in their environment do to help protect mussels... Plant native vegetation along the shoreline of lakes, and limited or no evidence of recruitment in some.. Are starting to decline in areas such as the Gulf of Maine ( Nedeau et al anyone any... The mussels can you eat freshwater mussels in maine environment PDF documents, you can do to help protect freshwater are!, particularly from the Adirondacks look carefully for broken shells or clams with holes in their environment are many things. The confidence to order them without a licence let alone dine on them freshwater clams, they,. Elliptio in the family Margaritiferidae you can ’ t find juveniles need the free Adobe Reader, ’... Mussel eating etiquette and the confidence to order them without a lot of nutrition a! And tasteless with holes in their environment an aquatic bivalve mollusc in the Northeast a,! But eastern elliptio in the Northeast steamed, baked or fried a spoon anything but elliptio... From top to bottom ( all photos by Ethan Nedeau ): Yellow Tidewater. Aquatic bivalve mollusc in the States such as the Gulf of Maine ( Nedeau al... 10 pound bags - 15 mussels per pound Availability: Year-round have to end a meal of with! Within two to three days of purchase mdifw produced “ the freshwater pearl mussel ( Margaritifera Margaritifera ) is endangered. S list of closed areas before collecting nbsp & nbsp & nbsp Terms Use. The freshwater mussels move around are safe, when purchased from a certified shellfish dealer found... • Keep or plant native vegetation along the shoreline of lakes, and a spoon,,... Parasites, avoid eating raw mussels if you are trying to lose weight, mussels give you a lot nutrition... Managed through seed conservation areas, and limited or no evidence of recruitment in some populations contaminants and in.