Around 1,200 rayed bean mussels were released into the Green River within Mammoth Cave National Park in southcentral Kentucky in early September in an effort to restore a federally-listed endangered species.
The rayed beans were released by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources in conjunction with the National Park Service, and haven't been found in Kentucky waters in more than four decades.
The endangered mussels were moved to Kentucky from the Allegheny River in Pennsylvania because of a tar spill.
“The re-introduction of the federally endangered rayed bean into Mammoth Cave National Park is an important step in re-establishing this species in its historic Kentucky range,” Mammoth Cave Science and Resource Management Chief Tim Pinion said.
Each of the rare rayed bean mussels placed into the Green River is tagged so the department can monitor them over time.