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Crucian carp

Crucian carp

Tench

Tench

Ruffe

Ruffe

Common nase

Common nase

Rudd

Rudd

Roach

Roach

Ide

Ide

Swan mussel

Swan mussel

Swan mussel

Swan mussel

Facts

LatinAnodonta cygnea
Size20 cm
FoodPlancton
HabitatLives buried in the bottom of lakes and streams
IUCN

Least concern

not endangered in the wild

LocationThe whole of Europe and Siberia
Map

How old is the swan mussel?

Swan mussel shells have a lot of small growth rings. One ring is equivalent to one year. This means you can count your way to calculating a swan mussel's age. The swan mussel can live for up to 20 years.

How the swan mussel eats

The swan mussel feeds on plankton filtered from the water. It extends its two breathing tubes and sucks up water and mud. This is how it catches its prey and takes in oxygen from the water.

One of the largest

The swan mussel can become up to 20 cm long. No other freshwater mussel found in Denmark grows to the same size. The swan mussel lives at the bottom of lakes and rivers. It is often partly buried and difficult to see.

A peculiar upbringing

In December the male swan mussel releases sperm cells into the surrounding water. The female swan mussel takes in the sperm cells through her breathing tubes, her eggs are fertilised and from the eggs are hatched small larvae. When the larvae are released from the female swan mussel, they attach themselves to fish and live as parasites for the first weeks of their lives.

Meet a swan mussel in the wild

You can find swan mussels in most lakes, ponds and calm streams in Denmark. In some areas, the swan mussels are packed so tightly that the bottom is almost completely covered by shells.


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