Myrtea spinifera (Montagu, 1803)Lucinoidea : Lucinidae
To size: To 26mm. Shell Structure: Thin, solid. Equivalve: Equivalve. Equilateral: Inequilateral, beaks to anterior. Tumidity: Not tumid. Outline: Ovate, posterior dorsal margin almost straight, posterior margin squared off, anterior dorsal margin slightly concave and half the length of posterior. Contour: Short, deep lunule, escutcheon long and deep. Both bordered by tubercule-like extension of sculpture.
Sculpture: Concentric ridges which continue to anterior and posterior dorsal margins as raised ‘tubercules’. Margin: Smooth. Ligament: Pale brown, reaching half way to posterior margin. Hinge: One cardinal in RV, two in LV, Single anterior and posterior lateral in both valves. Pallial Musculature: Pallial line continuous. Anterior adductor longer and narrower than posterior. Periostracum: Thin, cream. Colour: White.
Distribution & Ecology
Muddy and silty sands from the sublittoral and shelf depths.
Across the entire shelf but absent from the southern North Sea and eastern English Channel.
Continental Shelf (to 200m)
Juveniles & Similar Species
Key Features & Similar Species
Listed are literature citing Myrtea spinifera (Montagu, 1803). Reference containing the species Type Description is highlighted.
Allen J A 1958. On the basic form and adaptation to habitat in the Lucinacea (Eulamellibranchia). Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London Series B. 241: 421-484.
Dando P R, Southward A J, Southward E C, Terwilliger N B & Terwilliger R C 1985. Sulphur-oxidising bacteria and haemoglobin in gills of the bivalve mollusc Myrtea spinifera. Marine Ecology Progress Series. 23: 85.
Montagu G 1803. Testacea Britannica, or natural history of British shells, marine, land and the fresh-water, including the most minute: systematically arranged and embellished with figures Romsey, London. 606pp, 16pls.
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