This paper discusses the spatial distribution patterns of the various species of the Unionid mussels as functions of their respective life-cycle characteristics. Computer simulations identify two life-cycle characteristics as major factors governing the abundance of a species, namely the movement range of their fish hosts and the success rate of the parasitic larval glochidia in finding fish hosts. Core mussels species have fish hosts with large movement range to disperse the parasitic larval glochidia to achieve high levels of abundance. Species associated with fish host of limited movement range require high success rate of finding fish host to achieve at least an intermediate level of abundance. Species with low success rate of finding fish hosts coupled with fish hosts having limited movement range exhibit satellite species characteristics, namely rare in numbers and sparse in distributions.

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