Interactions with Other Species

Campeloma decisum have both positive and negative interactions with a wide variety of organisms.  The following three species are models of these interactions: Dreissena polymorpha, Leucochloridiomorpha constantiae, and Sanguinicola occidentalis.

Campeloma decisum
versus Dreissena polymorpha
Campeloma decisum
faces negative effects from its interaction with Dreissena polymorpha, commonly known as zebra mussels.  The parasitic zebra mussels not only affect the rate of growth of Campeloma decisum, but also their burrowing ability.
Studies on this interaction have been conducted by Molly Van Appledorn and her colleagues in Douglas Lake, MI.  The results of their research showed that two thirds of the snails they were following had at least one, if not two mussels attached to them.  Some snails were even shown to individually have over 20 mussels attached to them.  Obviously, this in not satisfactory for the well-being of Campeloma decisum.
This attachment has led to Campeloma decisum not burrowing as deeply as it normally would.  In environments without zebra mussels, Campeloma decisum on average burrowed 1.085 centimeters deep versus infected Campeloma decisum burrowing only 0.744 centimeters deep.  Since Campeloma decisum's ability to grow is affected by its ability to burrow, it is of no uncertainty that the presence of zebra mussels decreases the growth rate of Campeloma decisum.  Regardless of the adaptations that Campeloma decisum have tried to develop to cope with this negative interaction, zebra mussels are still, overall, the potential determinants in the endangerment and/or extinction of Campeloma decisum in certain northwestern locations (Van Appledorn et al., 2007).

Campeloma decisum versus Leucochloridiomorpha constantiae
Leucochloridiomorpha constantiae also play a role in an important interaction with Campeloma decisum.  As stated in the reproduction section, Leucochloridiomorpha constantiae are the little parasites that have led many Campeloma decisum populations to parthenogenesis.

Campeloma decisum versus Sanguinicola occidentalis
Patrick M. Muzzall has conducted research on the interaction between Campeloma decisum and Sanguinicola occidentalis.  This research was done, again, in the waters of Michigan.  Sanguinicola occidentalis is another parasitic trematode that infects Campeloma decisum.  However, in this case, Sanguinicola occidentalis uses Campeloma decisum as its intermediate host.  The miracidia of Sanguinicola occidentalis that infect Campeloma decisum hatch inside of the snail and then grow from sporocysts to rediae and finally to cercariae.  The cercariae then emerge from Campeloma decisum and swim to infect their next host, a fish.  This interaction does not interfere with the livelihood of Campeloma decisum, but is quite beneficial for Sanguinicola occidentalis to complete its lifecycle (Muzzall, 2000).

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