Species Account

Cerastoderma edule (Linnaeus, 1758)

Cardioidea : Cardiidae

Tebble name: Cerastoderma edule (Linnaeus)
Smith & Heppell name: Cerastoderma edule (L., 1758)

To size: To 55mm. Shell Structure: Robust to thick. Equivalve: Equivalve. Equilateral: Slightly inequilateral, beaks a little to the front of midline. Tumidity: Moderately tumid. Outline: Subquadrate rounded, tending to become posteriorly extended, longer than high. Contour: Umbo pronounced. Ventral profile (viewed from the side) smooth.

Sculpture: 22-28 radial ribs, rounded profile, becoming low on posterior slope and on posterior area. Interspaces as wide as ribs but not distinct. All ribs with low prominent cross bars directed vertically, these becoming obsolete with age and weak or absent posteriorly. Margin: Distinctly crenulate, ribs visible internally at margins but not extending into the umbonal cavity. Ligament: External visible from a lateral view. Hinge: Relatively strong, RV with 2 cardinals and paired anterior and posterior laterals; LV with 2 cardinals and single anterior and posterior laterals. Pallial Musculature: Pallial line entire, adductor scars rounded of approximate equal size. Periostracum: Rarely persistent, brown in colour. Colour: Externally white or with brown zones and patches Internally white usually with a small brown area over the posterior and this rarely extending to the middle of the shell.

Distribution & Ecology

Widespread. Intertidal and shallow sublittoral in sand and muddy sand, mostly estuarine but salinity needs are important. Not in brackish lagoons.

Depth Range
Continental Shelf (to 200m)

Additional Information & Related Species


Listed are literature citing Cerastoderma edule (Linnaeus, 1758). Reference containing the species Type Description is highlighted.

Brock V & Christiansen G 1989. Evolution of Cardium (Cerastoderma) edule, C. lamarcki and C. glaucum: studies of DNA-variation. Marine Biology. 102: 505-511.
Jelnes J.E., Høpner Petersen G. & Russell P.J.C. 1971. Isozyme taxonomy applied on four species of Cardium from Danish and British waters with a short description of the distribution of the species. (Bivalvia). Ophelia. 9: 15-19.
Linnaeus C 1758. Systema Naturae. Editio decima. 1. Regnum Animale Holmiae, Laurentii Salvii. 824pp.


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Record last modified: 17/05/2016