Cook Island aquacultured clams are set to return to the U.S. aquarium market thanks to the efforts of livestock wholesaler Quality Marine. Following some changes to the CITES permitting process for Tridacna, after few years of legal wrangling Quality Marine has finally succeeded in getting their ducks in a row and securing the exclusive import of Cook Island Tridacna maxima, T. derasa and Hippopus hippopus. Like the Tahitian Maxima clams from Tuamotu, there’s something about South Pacific clams that is a cut above specimens from the rest of the Ocean. Not only will these small aquacultured clams be readily adaptable to captive aquarium life, they ought to display a diversity of color and pattern that is significantly different from what we’ve been looking at for the past few years, especially with the T. maxima. It sounds like QM has finalized the arrangements to the point they know these aquacultured clams will be shipping to them from the Cooks, but not exactly when. Although not many reefers are in the market for the jumbo Tuamotu Maximas, we expect these smaller and more affordable Cook Island clams to be a popular new livestock item for reefers and retailers. We’ll keep our otoliths to the reef for word on when these bivalved beauties arrive on the mainland.
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