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Giant Clam Joins Non-Profit

  • October 19, 2010
  • |
  • Posted By Justin @ 11:23 AM

Today, as I write this, a giant clam (Tridacna gigas), is flying from Detroit, Michigan to LaGuardia Airport in New York City.

The clam, which measures over two feet long and which will continue to grow (the ruler seen in the image is 7 inches long), is the latest addition to a non-profit organization's City Aquarium-designed installation. The saltwater aquarium is prominently featured in the non-profit's philanthropy building in Manhattan.

The giant clam hails from our friends at Michigan's Tropicorium, the Midwest's largest marine aquarium livestock supplier. The grower, Dick Perrin, has been in the business of raising coral and clams since 1961. He considers this giant clam to be "like a son," and with good reason: he raised it for nine years, watching it grow from two inches to two feet! When I asked him if he planned to raise any more giant clams, he noted that they're hard to come by. "Chinese fishermen," Perrin said, "have fished over 95% of them, mostly for food. There aren't too many left."

Our techs will be transporting the giant clam in a sturdy box which, with the clam, weighs 105lbs. Why so heavy, especially when the clam only weighs 8lbs under water? The answer: the clam must be transported in bags of water. Contact with the air would strain the clam's shell and potentially harm it.

Don't worry, Dick. We'll take good care of your boy.

Signing off,
Brian Sanders
City Aquarium

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