John B. Richardson

Nondestructive Quantitative Sampling for Freshwater Mussels in Variable Substrate Streams

Unionid mussels were sampled in the Big South Fork of the Cumberland River, Tennessee and Kentucky, from July to October 1988 with a chain grid of 10 1-m2 quadrats. The chain grid was used to define 100-m2 areas along the stream bed by repeatedly moving the 10-m2 rectangle upstream. Within each 100-m2 area, 30 systematically selected quadrats were sampled to estimate density and size class distribution of mussel populations. Sampling variance within grids reflected the patchiness of mussel distribution and increased with substratum heterogeneity; number of mussels encountered per quadrat...