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Image of <i>Mya truncata</i> Linnaeus 1758
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Mya truncata Linnaeus 1758

Brief Summary

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The blunt gaper is closely related to the sand gaper, but is smaller. Compared to the sand gaper, it looks slightly misshaped, as if it got stuck somewhere. The shells are notably truncated at one side. The life-style of the blunt gaper is more or less identical to the sand gaper. You sometimes find fossilize dark gray shells of the blunt gaper on a Dutch beach.
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Mya truncata

provided by wikipedia EN

Mya truncata, common name the blunt gaper or truncate softshell, is a species of edible saltwater clam, a marine bivalve mollusk in the family Myidae.

Description

Shells of Mya truncata can reach a size of about 2.5–7.5 centimetres (0.98–2.95 in).[1][2] These bivalves are similar to the soft-shell clams (Mya arenaria), but usually they are smaller. Moreover, their shells are less elongated.[1]

Valves are rounded in the anterior end and truncated in the posterior end, with a large gape allowing the passage of an extensible siphon that can reach four times the length of the shell. The siphon can be retracted completely into the shell. The two valves are triangular and convex, but the right valve is more convex than the left one. The siphon is protected by a horny sheath and it is provided with small tentacles at its end.[1]

The outer surface of the valves is covered with concentric growth lines. It is whitish, while the outermost layer of the valves (periostracum) may be yellowish, light olive or dark brown. The hinge of the left valve shows a spoon-shaped projection, to which the ligaments are attached. The pallial sinus is deep and broad.[1][3]

Biology

Reproduction is sexual, the gametes of both sexes being expelled into the water, then the free larvae attach themselves to rocks. These clams filter the sea water in order to feed on bacteria, diatoms and larvae of invertebrates. In some years, the reproductive cycle fails completely.

These clams are the main food of the walrusses (Odobenus rosmarus). They feed on these clams by raking the mud with their tusks and sieving out the clams.

Distribution and habitat

This species is widespread over the Arctic seas and extends to the Bay of Biscay, to the West Atlantic coast and to Sachalin on the Pacific coast. It has been reported also in the Japan seas.[1][2][4] Mya truncata lives from the lower shore up to depths of 70 m, burrowed in sand or sandy mud.[1][2]

Gallery

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    Shell of Mya truncata from North Wales

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    Whole animal and left valve of the shell, from the North Sea

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    Mya truncata : a) foot b) siphon sheath c) exhalant siphon d) inhalant siphon e) umbones or beaks f) anterior g) posterior end of the shell

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    Shells of Mya truncata in subrecent sediments on the coast of Spitsbergen.

References

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wikipedia EN

Mya truncata: Brief Summary

provided by wikipedia EN

Mya truncata, common name the blunt gaper or truncate softshell, is a species of edible saltwater clam, a marine bivalve mollusk in the family Myidae.

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Distribution

provided by World Register of Marine Species
Arctic seas to Nahant, Massachusetts; Europe; Arctic seas to Washington; Japan
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bibliographic citation
Check List of European Marine Mollusca (CLEMAM). Hayward, P.J.; Ryland, J.S. (Ed.). (1990). The marine fauna of the British Isles and North-West Europe: 1. Introduction and protozoans to arthropods. Clarendon Press: Oxford, UK. ISBN 0-19-857356-1. 627 pp. North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS)
i18n: Contributor
Mary Kennedy [email]

Distribution

provided by World Register of Marine Species
Circumboreal
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WoRMS Editorial Board
bibliographic citation
Check List of European Marine Mollusca (CLEMAM). Hayward, P.J.; Ryland, J.S. (Ed.). (1990). The marine fauna of the British Isles and North-West Europe: 1. Introduction and protozoans to arthropods. Clarendon Press: Oxford, UK. ISBN 0-19-857356-1. 627 pp. North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS)
i18n: Contributor
[email]

Habitat

provided by World Register of Marine Species
bathyal, infralittoral and circalittoral of the Gulf and estuary
license
cc-by-4.0
copyright
WoRMS Editorial Board
bibliographic citation
Check List of European Marine Mollusca (CLEMAM). Hayward, P.J.; Ryland, J.S. (Ed.). (1990). The marine fauna of the British Isles and North-West Europe: 1. Introduction and protozoans to arthropods. Clarendon Press: Oxford, UK. ISBN 0-19-857356-1. 627 pp. North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS)
i18n: Contributor
Mary Kennedy [email]