Species Index

Tridacna maxima
(Roding, 1798)

Common Name: Burrowing Clam

Distribution: Uncommon to rare in the Solitary Island Marine Park. Distributed throughout the Indo-Pacific, South Africa, Red Sea to Marshall and Line Islands, north to Japan, south to Lord Howe Island. In Australia recorded from around Geraldton in Western Australia, north to the Timor Sea, the Coral Sea and Great Barrier Reef in Queensland south to northern New South Wales and including Lord Howe Island.

Ecological Notes: Frequents shallow rocky and coral reef, lagoons and intertidal areas to about 35 m depth.

Additional Notes: Colour is highly variable, ranging from bright blue to brown. Shell has well developed concentric growth folds and weak to moderate vertical folds. Embeds partially into coral formations or rubble. Filter feeds as well as obtaining nutrition from photosynthesis via its zooxanthellae. Embryos develop into free-swimming larvae eventually settling on the substrate as a bivalve veliger. Grows to 41.7 cm but commonly 25 cm.

References: Reef Creature Identification, Tropical Pacific. Paul Humann, Ned DeLoach, New World Publications Inc, Jacksonville, Florida, USA, 2012 edition. p.391.

Atlas of Living Australia website at Accessed 12/11/2018.

Palomares, M.L.D. and D. Pauly. Editors. 2018. SeaLifeBase. World Wide Web electronic publication., version (06/2018). Accessed 12/11/2018.