Species Account

Nucula atacellana Schenck, 1939

Nuculoidea : Nuculidae

Tebble name: n/a
Smith & Heppell name: Nucula atacellana Schenck, 1939

To size: To 5mm. Shell Structure: Relatively solid. Equivalve: Equivalve. Equilateral: Slightly inequilateral, the beaks lie approximately 45% of dorsal margin length from posterior. Tumidity: Conspicuously tumid. Outline: Rounded triangular to oval: antero-dorsal margin slightly rounded and gently sloping; postero-dorsal margin almost straight to very slightly rounded and steeply sloping; slight angled junction with posterior margin; anterior margin broadly rounded, ventral margin deeply rounded. Escutcheon short, relatively broad, elliptical, raised, with moderately defined edges; lunule raised, long, broadly elliptical with moderately defined edges; Umbo prominent, moderately broad, rounded, projecting above the dorsal margin.

Sculpture: Finely decussate, sculpture of numerous, closely-spaced, radial riblets, and well defined, closely spaced, raised concentric lines. Prodissoconch smooth, prominent with well defined margin, post-larval shell also smooth. Margin: Inner margin crenulate in correspondence to riblets. Ligament: Internal, opisthodetic, with a rounded triangular ligament seated in a well-developed resilifer. A thin, barely visible, external ligament lies anterior to the beaks. Hinge: Taxodont: Solid, continuous hinge plate, narrow below the beaks, broadening towards the anterior and posterior ends, with a well-developed resilifer. Teeth, robust, moderately long and blunt, usually 7-8 posterior and 9-10 anterior of the resilifer. Periostracum: Silky, straw-coloured, slightly iridescent. Prodissoconch and post-larval shell white. Colour: White to bluey grey, slightly nacreous. Inside of shell nacreous.

Distribution & Ecology

A deep water species recorded from most of the Atlantic deep-sea basins at lower bathyal and abyssal depths.

Depth Range
Bathyal (500 - 2000m)
Abyssal Rise (2000 - 4000m)

Additional Information & Related Species


Listed are literature citing Nucula atacellana Schenck, 1939. Reference containing the species Type Description is highlighted.

Olabarria C. 2005. Patterns of bathymetric zonation of bivalves in the Porcupine Sea Bight and adjacent abyssal plain, NE Atlantic. Deep-Sea Research I. 52: 15-31.
Rhind P.M. & Allen J.A. 1992. Studies on the deep-sea Protobranchia (Bivalvia): the family Nuculidae. Bulletin of the British Museum of Natural History. 58 (1): 61-93.
Schenck G 1939. Revised nomenclature for some nuculid pelecypods. Journal of Paleontology. 13: 21-41. pls 5-8.


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Record last modified: 15/01/2014