Alright all you naysayers, just simmer down for a second and let us get some words out before you get all riled up in the comments. First of all, please raise your hand if you’ve ever seen a ghostly white clam of any kind. Yeah we didnt think so. Secondly, is it more likely that a fish would have a transparent viewing dome in it’s head or is it more likely that two similar species of Tridacna clams could hybridize? Finally, for those of you who keep saying that these hybrid clams are just croceas, clearly you haven’t seen enough Crocea clams. Reef Builders reader Brett from Pacific Island Imports is the importer of these unusual clams and he was kind enough to tell us a little about them. Hit the read link for more details and new pictures of this exciting new giant clam variety.
In Brett’s own words:
i am the importer of these clams, they come from a privately owned clam farm in vanuatu. the breeder of the clams was hired froma nother clam farm to spawn these clams for us. he chose only colored teardrop maxima clams to spawn but left a few wild croceas in the spawing tank. (too lazy to remove them i guess. these clams are definitely hybrids, they require no cites permits to ship( they are recognized by the vanuatu government, which is watched over by the australian government, and by the us fish and wildlife service here in california as hybrids.) if you see an empty shell that have a shape not like any other maxima or crocea. if you do believe that they are hybrids then fine, dont buy any. your loss. any by the way 65% of the babies are black with blue stripes, 30% are gold, and 5% are green, multicolor, or the hybrid.
Now for those of you calling for genetic testing to verify the origin of these clams, please try to be realistic. A full genetic analysis of the Hybrid Tridacna maxima x T. crocea would amount to a $10,000 lie detector test. The results of which wouldn’t change how unusual these clams look nor would it fully explain the odd range of colors expressed by the Maxea clams. Check out the Picassa gallery that Brett kindly shared with us this morning with some of the more notable specimens featured in the gallery below. We should be seeing some more Maxeas in the Denver area next week and we’ll get some more pics to show you how the mantle may look most like a Crocea but the shells share attributes of both crocea and maxima clams.