A new species of Tridacna giant clam has been discovered in the Red Sea. Formerly believed to be a variant of Tridacna maxima, the newly described T. costata is now considered to be under serious threat of extinction. The new Tridacnid was found to make up less than one percent of the giant clam population in the Red Sea and although it was once widespread, overharvesting by humans is thought to be one of the main causes of its decline. T. costata is distinguished from T. maxima by more numerous and distinct rib-like folds of the shell as well as a subdued brownish mantle which exhibits numerous, wart-like protrusions. Although the clam has only been identified from the Red Sea, it is quite possible that this species occurs outside of this range and that it has been mistaken for a brown T. maxima all this time. Keep your eyes peeled at the LFS and let us know if you find one.
Jake Adams has been an avid marine aquarist since the mid 90s and has worked in the retail side of the marine aquarium trade for more than ten years. He has a bachelor’s degree in Marine Science and has been the managing editor of ReefBuilders.com since 2008. Jake is interested in every facet of the marine aquarium hobby from the concepts to the technology, rare fish to exotic corals, and his interests are well documented through a very prolific career of speaking to reef clubs and marine aquarium events, and writing articles for aquarium publications across the globe. His primary interest is in corals which Jake pursues in the aquarium hobby as well as diving the coral reefs of the world.