But a French startup is going further, allowing bivalves like clams, mussels, and oysters to act as all-natural water quality inspectors. The company began as a research project some 15 years ago at the University of Bordeaux. As largely stationary filter feeders, they are quite in tune with their surroundings, and their habits are affected by things like temperature, pollution, and so on. The molluSCAN-eye system won’t replace traditional water monitoring, but as a living part of the water ecosystem, its health and the health of its surroundings are closely linked. Quinault is hoping that municipalities and natural resource authorities will shell out for the tech as a totally natural, harmless, and low-touch way to watch their waterways.