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Milford Haven, Pembrokeshire, Wales
M012393

Celtic Sea, Challenger
M012379

Celtic Sea, Challenger
M012380

Celtic Sea, Challenger
M012381

Celtic Sea, Challenger
M012382

Celtic Sea, Challenger
M012383

Celtic Sea, Challenger
M012384

Celtic Sea, Challenger
M012385

Periostracum. Irish Sea
M012386

Irish Sea
M012387

Irish Sea
M012388

Irish Sea
M012389

Irish Sea
M012390

Irish Sea
M012391

Periostracum. Irish Sea
M012392

Milford Haven, Pembrokeshire, Wales
M012394

Irish Sea : 52° 01’07N / 5° 45’01W : 112m
M012395

Periostracum. var scotica Shetland
M012397

var scotica Shetland
M012398

var scotica Shetland
M012399

var scotica W of Shetland : 466m
M012400

Periostracum. var scotica W of Shetland : 466m
M012401

var scotica W of Shetland : 466m
M012402

W of Shetland, AFEN : 332m
M012403

Periostracum. W of Shetland, AFEN : 332m
M012404

W of Shetland, AFEN 53807 : 368m
M012405

Periostracum. W of Shetland, AFEN 53807 : 368m
M012406

W of Shetland, AFEN : 418m
M012407

Periostracum. W of Shetland, AFEN : 418m
M012408

Kerrera : 56° 23.1'N / 5° 31.7'W
M012410

Kerrera
M012411

Shetland
M012414

Shetland
M012415

Shetland
M012416

Shetland
M012417

Shetland
M012418
Astarte sulcata (da Costa, 1778)
''
NMW Image No.

Astarte sulcata (da Costa, 1778)

Crassatelloidea : Astartidae
Tebble name: Astarte sulcata (da Costa)
Smith & Heppell name: Astarte sulcata (da Costa, 1778)

To size: To 30mm. Shell Structure: Solid. Equivalve: Equivalve. Equilateral: Relatively inequilateral, the beaks lie approximately 35% of dorsal margin length from anterior. Tumidity: Slightly tumid. Outline: Sub-ovate to rounded quadrangular, height of shell approximately 90% of the height. Posterior dorsal margin long, gently sloping, very slightly convex to almost straight; anterior dorsal margin more steeply sloping and conspicuously concave; anterior end slightly rounded; posterior end truncated/bluntly rounded; ventral margin gently rounded; lunule distinct, sunken, elongate heart-shaped with well defined, raised edges; escutcheon distinct, lanceolate, with very well defined raised edges. Beaks prosogyrous.

Sculpture: Broad, concentric, strap-like ridges, ranging in number from 25 to over 40 in adult individuals. Margin: Initially smooth, becoming crenulate in older shells. Size at which crenulations appear varies between populations. Ligament: Broad, distinct but not prominently raised, runs for approximately one third the length of the escutcheon. Hinge: Heterodont: Robust hinge plate; right valve with 2 solid, blunt cardinal teeth, the posterior tooth is thin and inconspicuous and the anterior tooth is broad; left valve with 3 blunt cardinal teeth, the 2 anterior teeth are relatively broad and solid whereas the posterior cardinal is very thin and inconspicuous. The posterior part of the right valve has a thickened ridge similar to a lateral tooth. Pallial Musculature: Entire. Periostracum: Ranges from yellowy brown to dark brown, almost black. Dull surface texture with a fine wavy linear pattern. Colour: White.



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Distribution & Ecology


Occurs all around Britain and Ireland, but rare or absent in the southern North Sea and eastern English Channel

Lives in a range of usually silty and muddy sands and gravels from the near sub-littoral towards the shelf edge and on the very upper slope, depth range 5 to 250m or more.

Depth Range
Continental Shelf (to 200m)
Continental Margin Zone (200 - 500m)


Juveniles & Similar Species

Juvenile Description

Key Features & Similar Species
Given the considerable variation in outline we consider the periostracum to be the most conclusive character for recognising A. sulcata. The pattern is of fine wavy lines and is not netted (A. elliptica) or punctate (A. montagui and A. crenata group).

Additional Comments
Within our study area there are many described varieties of A. sulcata. These varieties are based on both outline and number of ribs. We have illustrated many specimens to show variation with the primary differences depending on the gradient in outline from subovate to rounded subtrigonal. The more rounded forms appear to become more frequent in northern waters and have been assigned to var. scotica. Deeper water shells are also often more rounded or sometimes quadrate and often smaller. They may have smooth or crenulate inner margins. However, all shells that we assign to A. sulcata have a periostracum with a wavy linear pattern. This pattern is not shared with A. elliptica or the A. crenata group.

The presence of a crenulated margin is not a reliable character. Crenulations are not present in juvenile shells and the size at which they appear varies between populations. We suspect that their appearance is age related and not size related and is often associated with a thickening of the margin.

Crassatelloidea : Astartidae

References


Listed are literature citing Astarte sulcata (da Costa, 1778). Reference containing the species Type Description is highlighted.
da Costa E M 1778. Historia Naturalis Testaceorum Britanniae London: Millan, White, Elmsley & Robson. 254pp, 17pls.
Høpner Petersen G. 2001. Studies on some Arctic and Baltic Astarte species (Bivalvia, Mollusca). Bioscience. 52: 1-71.

Resources


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Weblinks

  • Conchological Society of Great Britain & Ireland
    Provides resources for understanding, identifying, recording, and conserving molluscs
  • CLEMAM
    Check List of European Marine Mollusca
  • MarLIN
    The Marine Life Information Network for Britain and Ireland (MarLIN) provides information for marine environmental management, protection and education. It is a centre of excellence in spatially based and time-series marine biological information and supports good stewardship in the marine environment.
  • NBN Gateway
    National Biodiversity Network's Gateway. Use it to explore UK biodiversity data, as contributed by participating data providers.
  • BivAToL
  • MarBEF
  • Malacological Society
  • Unitas Malacologica
  • Census of Marine Life
  • MarBEF
    MarBEF, a network of excellence funded by the European Union and consisting of 94 European marine institutes, is a platform to integrate and disseminate knowledge and expertise on marine biodiversity, with links to researchers, industry, stakeholders and the general public.

Record last modified - 15/01/2014