The SquamoCea is a new hybrid Tridacna giant clam cross between T. squamosa and T. crocea. You may recall several years ago the Maxea clam hybrid between crocea and maxima clams made a big splash with amazing mantles and some really unique patterns. Well the clam breeders are at it again, this time specifically labeling the hybrid between Tridacna squamosa x T. crocea.
When we first spotted the Maxea clam, we were looking at a cross between two species with similar shells and dissimilar mantles. It was the mantle’s odd color and wild pattern that tipped us off about the Maxea’s hybrid origin.
In the case of the SquamoCea, this cross involves two species with very dissimilar shells and in this case, very similar mantles. If they’re smart (and we assume they are), the clam breeders of the SquamoCea likely selected the blue squamosa clams as the broodstock for the crossing with crocea, some specimens of which can have a dark mantle with metallic blue spots.
So what we’re looking at with the SquamoCea is a shell with much fewer, larger and more spaced out scutes and a deep dark mantle with larger metallic blue spots. While the Maxea was a cross between two similarly sized species, crocea and squamosa are very different in adult size. It’ll be really interesting to see if the SquamoCea cross results in an adult bivalve that looks like a giant crocea or a dwarf squamosa clam.
You can be first in line to try to grow one out because the majority of what we know about the new crocea x squamosa clam is from no fewer than six SquamoCea clam specimens sittin’ pretty in the LiveAquaria Diver’s Den. $180 is kind of a lot for a really pretty crocea clam, but it’s spot on for a blue squamosa, and way underpriced for a blue squamosa clam with unique features that we don’t know about yet and which is likely to stay smaller, longer than a pure-bred blue squammie.