Carter’s Freshwater Mussel

Carter’s Freshwater Mussel, Westralunio carteri is unique in being the only species of freshwater mussel found in south-western Australia and the only member of the genus Westralunio in Australia. Until recently, however, almost nothing was known about the biology or conservation status of this species. The range of W. carteri has contracted by 49% in less than 50 years, principally as a result of secondary salinisation and reduced water flow from a drying climate (Klunzinger et al. 2015). The species is now confined to non-salinised rivers and streams mostly in forested catchments along the west and south coasts. The species is classified as Vulnerable under the Wildlife Conservation Act the EPBC Act and the IUCN Red List of threatened species

Carter’s freshwater mussel, Westralunio carteri.  Photo: Steven Beatty