Tridacna tevoroa is a very little known species of giant clam with a limited distribution centered around the Tonga Islands. The living specimens of the “Devil Clam” was described as Tridacna tevoroa but it was originally described as Tridacna mbalavuana from just its shells, although both names can be used interchangeable. With its dark and not-at-all colorful warty blackish grey mantle, Tridacna tevoroa is called the devil clam with good reason and it also explains why this species is completely unknown in the marine aquarium trade. That and Tridacna tevoroa is also very very rare, which is why we were so excited to discover some recent photographs which really shows the unique appearance of this very unusual species of giant clam.
As you can see the devil clam Tridacna tevoroa is not exactly a “pretty” clam but it is very interesting to compare to the more typical reef clams. The very smooth shell of Tridacna tevoroa open very wide to reveal a weird warty mantle which only extends to the edge of the shell like in Hippopus species. The incurrent siphon of Tridacna tevoroa is ringed in tentacles that very thick and kind of warty and gnarly in their own right.
Also, unlike shallow water giant clams the devil clam is usually found much deeper, which in addition to its limited range explains why it is very rarely seen by divers. Don’t expect to see Tridacna tevoroa enter teh aquarium trade in the future, or ever for that matter, but it’s cool to know that there’s still a lot we don’t know about various species of giant clams, including the recently described Tridacna costata from the Red Sea.