Phylum Molluska, Order: Veneroida, Class: Bivalvia, Family: Veneridae

Venerupis philippinarum

DISTRIBUTION: Native to Japan, Korea and China.  Introduced to British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, Baja California and French Atlantic Coast, and Mediterranean coast..

APPEARANCE: Shell is usually cream or gray, sometimes with green or brown tones, and sometimes stained rusty or black (the latter typical of anoxic mud). It often has patterns of dark brown or black, overlapping, triangular markings  Smaller specimens (up to about 3 cm)  found in muddy sand on the east shore of  San Francisco Bay come in a remarkable variety of hues, including white, tan, yellow, blue and green, The interior of the shell is mostly white, often with dark purple or yellow staining near the hind end and the lower margins of the shell.

DIET: Filter feeder

REMARKS: Global aquaculture production of V. philippinarum is estimated at over 1 million tons/year with a value of around $1.5 billion.

MORTALITY: A variety of organisms have been observed feeding on Venerupis philippinarum on the Pacific coast, including the moon snail Euspira lewisii, the Atlantic oyster drill Urosalpinx cinerea, crabs, bat rays, flounder, sturgeon, willet, gulls, ducks and raccoons, and undoubtedly many others. The small pea crabs Pinnixa faba and Pinnixa littoralis are sometimes found living inside the shells of live Venerupis philippinarum.

At the Steinheart Aquarium V. philippinarum is found in the tidepool where starfishes feed on them in place of mussels which are harder to obtain.   SEE PHOTO BELOW . 

Ochre Sea Star Pisaster ochraceus consuming a Manila Clam.