FWGNA > Species Accounts > Hydrobiidae > Marstonia lustrica
Marstonia lustrica (Pilsbry 1890)

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> Habitat & Distribution

Populations of M. lustrica are widespread in northern latitudes, from New York through southern Ontario and Quebec to Minnesota (Jokinen 1992, Clarke 1981, Baker 1928, Stewart 2006).  They seem to reach their greatest abundance in larger lakes and quiet river pools on stones and aquatic vegetation (Berry 1943).  In the present study area we have scattered records in the northern Glaciated Central Lowlands from Ohio and Pennsylvania, especially in pools of the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers.  We have not confirmed Marstonia lustrica from any Atlantic drainage, although a population has been reported from Fairfax County, Virginia (Thompson 1977, 1984). FWGNA incidence rank I-3p, peripheral in our 17-state study region.

> Ecology & Life History

Marstonia lustrica can become the numerically dominant gastropod in large, rich, northern lakes, where populations do not seem restricted to any particular habitat type, substrate, or depth (Baker 1918, Bronmark et al 1992, Pace et al. 1979).  As such M. lustrica populations may comprise an important element of the diet of fish, crayfish, and other predators (Osenberg 1989, Olsen et al. 1991).

Dillon's (2000:416-419) reanalysis of Baker's (1918) data suggested that M. lustrica may have been positively associated with L. catascopium and G. parvus in Oneida Lake, NY, perhaps as a mechanism to minimize competition.  More recent surveys of the Oneida Lake fauna, however, suggest that the  M. lustrica population is greatly reduced (Harman & Fourney 1970, Harman 2000).

> Taxonomy & Systematics

Coote (2011, 2019) surveyed mtDNA sequence divergence in 20 populations of M. lustrica sampled across the range of the species from Massachusetts to Minnesota, ultimately obtaining 54 COI sequences and 41 NDI sequences.  His results, documenting up to 4.5% sequence divergence within populations and peculiar patterns of haplotype sharing, were reviewed in my essay of 3Aug20, available from the link below.
Coote reported surprisingly little mtCOI sequence divergence between his 20 populations of M. lustrica and M. pachyta or M. hershleri of Alabama or M. comalensis of Texas.  This confirmed the earlier observations of Hershler et al. (2003).

Pilsbry originally described lustrica in the genus Amnicola, Baker (1926) made it the type of his new subgenus Marstonia, and Thompson (1969) elevated Marstonia to the genus level.  Marstonia was briefly subsumed under the genus Pyrgulopsis (Call & Pilsbry 1886) by Hershler & Thompson (1987), but then resurrected to the genus level by Thompson & Hershler (2002).  Female reproductive anatomy, specifically occurrence of a large extension of the albumen gland into the pallial roof, is a distinctly Marstonia characteristic (Hershler 1994, Hershler et al. 2003).  Recent molecular-based phylogenetic analyses has also supported the distinction between Marstonia and Pyrgulopsis (Liu and Hershler 2005), as well as the retention of both genera in the Hydrobiidae sensu strictu (Wilke et al. 2013).

Baker (1928) described two varieties of M. lustrica, decepta and perlustrica, which are obvious synonyms.  Other synonyms (according to Thompson 1977) include oneida, winkleyi, and gelida.

> Supplementary Resources [PDF]

> Essays

  • Earlier versions of this website, online until August of 2016, adopted the large, broadly-inclusive concept of the Hydrobiidae (sl) following Kabat & Hershler (1993).  More recently the FWGNA project has shifted to the Wilke et al. (2013) classification system, distinguishing a much smaller Hydrobiidae (ss) and elevating many hydrobioid taxa previously ranked as subfamilies to the full family level.  For more details, see The Classification of the Hydrobioids.
  • In my essay of 3Aug20 I reviewed T. W. Coote's (2019) important survey of Mitochondrial heterogeneity in Marstonia lustrica across 20 populations, 6 states, and one Canadian province.

> References

Baker, F.  1918.  The productivity of invertebrate fish food on the bottom of Oneida Lake, NY, with special reference to mollusks. Technical Publication 9. Syracuse, NY State College of Forestry. 264p  
Baker, F.C. 1926. Nomenclatural notes on American fresh water Mollusca. Transactions of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts, and Letters 22:193-205.  
Baker, F.  1928.  Freshwater Mollusca of Wisconsin, Part I, Gastropoda. Bull. Wisc. Geol. Natur. Hist. Survey, vol. 70. Madison, University of Wisconsin Press.  
Berry, E.  1943.  The Amnicolidae of Michigan: distribution, ecology, and taxonomy. Misc. Publ. Mus. Zool. U. Mich., 57: 1-68.  
Bronmark, C., S. Klosiewski, & R. Stein.  1992.  Indirect effects of predation in a freshwater, benthic food chain. Ecology, 73: 1662-1674.
Call R. E. & Pilsbry H. A. (1886) On Pyrgulopsis, a new genus of rissoid mollusk, with description of two new forms". Proceeding Davenport Academy of Natural Sciences V.: 9-14.
Clarke, A.  1981.  The Freshwater Mollusks of Canada. Ottawa, The National Museums of Canada.
Coote, T. W. 2011. The phylogeography of Marstonia lustrica: Understanding the relationship between glaciation and the evolution and distribution of a rare snail.  Ph.D. dissertation, University of Massachusetts, Amherst.  Open Access Dissertations 399. [html]
Coote, T. W. 2019. A phylogeny of Marstonia lustrica (Pilsbry 1890) (Gastropoda: Hydrobiidae) across its range.  Northeastern Naturalist 26: 672 – 683.
Dillon, R. T., Jr.  2000.
  The Ecology of Freshwater Molluscs. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.  
Harman, W.  2000.  Diminishing species richness of mollusks in Oneida Lake, New Yourk State, USA. The Nautilus, 114: 120-126.  
Harman, W., & J. Forney.  1970.  Changes in the molluscan community on Oneida Lake, N.Y. between 1917 and 1967. Limnol. Oceanog., 15: 454-460.  
Hershler, R. (1994)  A review of the North American freshwater snail genus Pyrgulopsis (Hydrobiidae). Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology 1994; 0(554):1-115.   
Hershler, R., H. Liu, and F.G. Thompson 2003.  Phylogenetic relationships of North American nymphophiline gastropods based on mitochondrial DNA sequences.  Zoologica Scripta 32:357-366.  
Hershler, R., and F.G. Thompson 1987.  North American Hydrobiidae (Gastropoda: Rissoacea): redescription and systematic relationships of Tryonia Stimpson, 1865 and Pyrgulopsis Call and Pilsbry, 1886. The Nautilus 101:25-32.   
Jokinen, E.  1992.  The freshwater snails (Mollusca: Gastropoda) of New York State. New York State Museum Bulletin, 482: 1-112.   
Kabat, A.R., and R. Hershler 1993. The prosobranch snail family Hydrobiidae (Gastropoda: Rissooidea): review of classification and supraspecific taxa. Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology 547:1-94.   
Liu, H., and R. Hershler 2005.  Molecular systematics and radiation of western North American nympholine gastropods. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 34:284-298. 
Olsen, T., D. Lodge, G. Capelli, & R. Hamilton.  1991.  Mechanisms of impact of an introduced crayfish (Orconectes rusticus) on littoral congeners, snails, and macrophytes. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci., 48: 1853-1861.  
Osenberg, C.  1989.  Resource limitation, competition and the influence of life history in a freshwater snail community. Oecologia, 79: 512-519.  
Pace, G., E. Szuch, & R. Dapson.  1979.  Depth distribution of three gastropods in New Mission Bay, Lake Michigan. Nautilus, 93: 31-36.  
Stewart, T.  2006.  The freshwater gastropods of Iowa (1821-1998): Species composition, geographic distributions, and conservation concerns. Amer. Malac. Bull., 21: 59 - 75.  
Thompson, F.G. 1968.  The Aquatic Snails of the Family Hydrobiidae of Peninsular Florida. University of Florida Press, Gainesville, Florida, USA.  
Thompson, F.  1984.  The Freshwater Snails of Florida, A Manual for Identification. Gainesville, University of Florida Press.  
Thompson, F.G. 1977. The hydrobiid snail genus Marstonia.  Bulletin of the Florida State Museum 21(3):113-158.  
Thompson, F.G. 2004.  An identification manual for the freshwater snails of Florida.  
Thompson, F. G. & R. Hershler 2002.  Two genera of North American freshwater snails: Marstonia Baker, 1926, resurrected to generic status, and Floridobia, new genus (Prosobranchia: Hydrobiidae: Nymphophilinae).  The Veliger 45: 269 - 271.
Wilke T., Haase M., Hershler R., Liu H-P., Misof B., Ponder W. (2013)  Pushing short DNA fragments to the limit: Phylogenetic relationships of “hydrobioid” gastropods (Caenogastropoda: Rissooidea).  Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 66: 715 – 736.