• The Historic Entrance of Mammoth Cave

    Mammoth Cave

    National Park Kentucky

Mollusks

Nature and Science

One of Green River's diverse mussel species

(Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission)

The Green River in Mammoth Cave National Park contains the most diverse population of freshwater mussels in North America, and one of the most diverse populations in the world. Among the species found in the river are the Ring Pink, Rough Pigtoe, Pistolgrip, Fatmucket, Spectaclecase, Plain Pocketbook, Washboard, Sheepnose, and Snuffbox. Several of the mussel species are federally endangered. A snail (Antroselates spiralis) is found in cave environments.

Did You Know?

Tuberculosis Hut in Mammoth Cave

In 1841, cave owner Dr. John Croghan believed the cave air might cure his patients suffering from tuberculosis. He brought 16 patients into Mammoth Cave that winter and housed them in stone and wood huts. After some perished, they left the cave, for of course the cave air offered no cure.