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Dreissena polymorpha
Native Range: Drainage basins of the Black, Azov, Caspian and Aral Seas.
Invasive Range: Zebra mussels has become widely spread in Europe since they started expanding their range westwards in the 1800s. Its first records in West Europe are: in 1824 from Britain, in 1826 from Netherlands (Rotterdam), in 1830 from Germany (Hamburg), in 1840 from Denmark (Copenhagen), etc., and recently, in 1960s from Italy, in 1997 from Ireland, in 2001 from Spain, etc. Zebra mussels were first discovered in North America in 1988 in the Great Lakes. In the 1990s, they spread into the Hudson and Illinois rivers, from where they were introduced into the Mississippi River drainage basin. At present their occurrence has been reported in 28 U.S. states.
Distribution in Bulgaria: Zebra mussel is considered an invasive native species in Bulgaria; Its native range included the Danube River, the Black Sea coastal rivers (Kamchia, Veleka) and lakes (Shabla, Ezerets, Durankulak, Varna, Beloslav, Mandra, Burgas). Recently, a rapid spread of zebra mussel in the Bulgarian inland water bodies has been recorded. see GIS map >>>

Dreissena bugensis

Native Range: Until the first half of the 20th century, it was considered as endemic species in the lowest reaches of the Southern Bug River and its estuary (where it was first discovered), the Dnieper River estuary, as well as the adjacent brackish waters of the Northwestern Black Sea in Ukraine.
Invasive Range: After 1940, the quagga mussel expanded its range upstream the Dnieper River, and became widely spread in the Dnieper reservoirs. In the 1980s, it penetrated into the water bodies of the Crimean Peninsula, and into the Don and Volga River basins. In the Danube River, the quagga mussel was first recorded in 2004 - in the Romanian sector (in the Cernavoda area), and one year later - in the Romanian-Serbian sector (at Drobeta-Turnu Severin). In 2006, the species was found near Willemstad in the Hollands Diep, part of the main distributary in the Rhine Delta, the Netherlands. In May 2007, it was found in the Main River, Germany. In 2008, the species was reported in the Hungarian section of the Danube.
In North America, D. bugensis was first recorded in the Great Lakes in 1989. The first record outside the Great Lakes basin was made in the Mississippi River basin in 1995. In 2007, populations of quagga mussels were discovered in Lake Mead near Boulder City, Nevada, and in Lakes Havasu and Mohave on the California/Arizona border. At present, their occurrence has been reported in 13 U.S. states.

Distribution in Bulgaria: First records of quagga mussels from the Bulgarian stretch of the Danube River were in the section between the villages Koshava (r. km 811) and Sandrovo (r. km 477) in 2005-2006. In the same period, the species was also found in two reservoirs: Ogosta and Shishmanov Val. see GIS map >>>

Dreissena presbensis
In the past, all recent freshwater dreissenids, except D. bugensis were recorded as D. polymorpha polymorpha. A taxonomic revision of Dreissena by Lvova & Starobogatov (1982) showed that Lake Ohrid (Republic of Macedonia/ Albania) was inhabited by a separate endemic species Dressena stankovici Lvova & Starobogatov, 1982. Two years later, the species was described also by Lutzkanov (1984) as D. polymorpha ohridela. Later, the same species was identified in the Lake Prespa (Republic of Macedonia/ Greece/ Albania). At present it is accepted as a synonym of D. presbensis (D. blanci presbensis Kobelt, 1915).
The species has been reported in the lakes from the Adriatic Sea basin - Lake Ohrid, Lake Prespa, Lake Mikri Prespa (Greece/ Albania), and Lake Skutari (Montenegro/ Albania); in the Aegean Sea basin - Lake Dojran (Republic of Macedonia/ Greece) and Lake Vegoritis (Ostrovsko Ezero) (Greece); and in the Ionian Sea basin - Lake Pamvotis (Greece).

Dreissena blanci
It has been reported that in the Lakes Prespa and Pamvotis, D. presbensis is sympatric with another endemic species D. blanci Westerlund, 1890 (type locality Missolonghi, Greece), the latter being with much lower abundance. D. blanci has been recorded mainly in the lakes from the Ionian Sea basin - Lake Pamvotis, Lake Trichonida (Trichonis), Lake Lysimachia, and Lake Amvrakia (Greece); as well as the Adriatic Sea basin - Lake Prespa (Republic of Macedonia/ Greece/ Albania).


This website is developed with support from the Bulgarian Science Fund, Ministry of Education, Youth and Science,
within the Project "Assessment and Management of Dreissena spp. Invasions in the Bulgarian Water Bodies",
Contract Number: DO-02-283/2008.

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