Contact Information

Texas Nature Trackers
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
4200 Smith School Road
Austin, TX 78744
(800) 792-1112 ext. 8062


Texas Mussel Watch: Become a Texas Mussel Watch Volunteer

Identifying mussel species in the field is fun and challenging. Most mussel monitoring can take place along the shores or in shallow water, especially when water levels are lower than normal during droughts or during the draw downs of reservoirs. Monitoring can take place incidentally as volunteers encounter mussels, but regular visits (once or twice a year) to a particular water body are encouraged.

Texas Mussel Watch volunteer data can help us determine:

  1. The distribution and relative abundance of different freshwater mussel species.
  2. Changes in the distribution and abundance of mussel species over time.
  3. The presence of exotic mussels.

No special equipment is needed to monitor for mussels, but volunteers must hold a license or permit to handle live animals or even shells. It is recommended for volunteers to attend a Texas Mussel Watch Monitoring Workshop where upon completion they will be included on a TPWD biologistís scientific permit and receive a monitoring manual. Workshops are scheduled in different parts of the state. To find out more about Texas Nature Trackers or to sign up for a Texas Mussel Watch monitoring Workshop, please e-mail or call 1-800-792-1112, x 8062.