Ark clam


Ark clam

Taxobox
name = Ark clam


image_width = 250px
image_caption = "Arca zebra" shell.
regnum = Animalia
phylum = Mollusca
classis = Bivalvia
subclassis = Pteriomorpha
ordo = Arcoida
familia = Arcidae
familia_authority = Lamarck, 1809
subdivision_ranks = Genera
subdivision = See text

Ark clams is the common name for a family of small to large-sized edible saltwater clams or marine bivalve molluscs in the family Arcidae. Ark clams vary both in shape and size. They number about 200 species world-wide.

The shell of ark clams is often white or cream, but sometimes, in different species, the shell is striped with, tinted with, or completely colored with, a rich brown. In life the shell of most species has a thick layer of brown periostracum covering the harder calcareous part of the shell. In some genera such as "Barbatia", the periostracum can be tufted at the end of the shell into something that resembles a beard, hence the name "Barbatia" or bearded one.

The group is known as "ark shells" because genera such as "Arca" have a large flat area in front of the umbo, which, in an intact shell, can somewhat resemble a deck, with the rest of the shell perhaps resembling an ancient keeled boat such as Noah's ark is thought to have been.

All ark shells have a long straight hinge line with a single row of numerous small and unspecialized "teeth". This is known as a "taxodont dentition" and represents an ancient lineage. This kind of hinge line is also found in the bivalve families Glycymerididae, Nuculidae and Nuculanidae.

The thick outer skin or periostracum of an ark clam can act as camouflage, such that the shells can sometimes look like stones when lying on the bottom.

Large ark clams, such as "Arca zebra", are commonly used as bait, as well as food, throughout the Caribbean.

General

* "Acar" Gray, 1857
* "Anadara" Gray, 1847
* "Arca" Linnaeus, 1758
* "Barbatia" Gray, 1847
* "Bathyarca" Kobelt, 1891
* "Bentharca" Verrill and Bush, 1898
* "Noetia"
* "Samacar" Iredale, 1936
* "Scapharca"
* "Senilia"
* "Trisidos"

External links

* [http://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=79326 ITIS]
* [http://shells.tricity.wsu.edu/ArcherdShellCollection/Bivalvia/Arcidae.html Archerd Shell Collection, Ark clams]


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • ark clam — noun Any of the small to large sized edible saltwater clams in the family Arcidae …   Wiktionary

  • Clam — For other uses, see Clam (disambiguation). Clam Edible clams in the family Veneridae Scientific classification Kingdom …   Wikipedia

  • clam — clam1 clamlike, adj. clammer, n. /klam/, n., v., clammed, clamming. n. 1. any of various bivalve mollusks, esp. certain edible species. Cf. quahog, soft shell clam. 2. Informal. a secretive or silent person. 3 …   Universalium

  • Anadara — Taxobox name = Anadara image caption = regnum = Animalia phylum = Mollusca classis = Bivalvia subclassis = Pteriomorpha ordo = Arcoida familia = Arcidae genus = Anadara genus authority = Gray, 1847 subdivision ranks = Species subdivision = See… …   Wikipedia

  • Barbatia — Taxobox name = Barbatia image caption = regnum = Animalia phylum = Mollusca classis = Bivalvia subclassis = Pteriomorpha ordo = Arcoida familia = Arcidae genus = Barbatia genus authority = Gray, 1847 subdivision ranks = Species subdivision = See… …   Wikipedia

  • Noetia ponderosa — Scientific classification Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Mollusca Class: Bivalvia …   Wikipedia

  • Arcoida — Taxobox name = Arcoida fossil range = Lower Ordovician to Recent image caption = Arca zebra shell regnum = Animalia phylum = Mollusca classis = Bivalvia subclassis = Pteriomorpha ordo = Arcoida subdivision ranks = Families subdivision = See… …   Wikipedia

  • ARCA — or Arca may refer to:* A Latin word for a chest used to store valuables * Automobile Racing Club of America, a stock car auto racing sanctioning body in the United States founded in 1952 * NYSE Arca, an online stock exchange previously known as… …   Wikipedia

  • Parallelodontidae — Taxobox name = Parallelodontidae image caption = regnum = Animalia phylum = Mollusca classis = Bivalvia subclassis = Pteriomorpha ordo = Arcoida familia = Parallelodontidae familia authority = subdivision ranks = Genera subdivision = See textThe… …   Wikipedia

  • Glycymerididae — Taxobox name = Glycymerididae image caption = Tucetona laticostata regnum = Animalia phylum = Mollusca classis = Bivalvia subclassis = Pteriomorpha ordo = Arcoida familia = Glycymerididae familia authority = Newton, 1922 subdivision ranks =… …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.