- The rather surprising Geoduck not only constitutes a unique looking creature, it actually appears to be one of the longest-lived life forms on earth.
- This amazing mollusk has an average lifespan of over 100 years, with the oldest known specimen reaching 168 years of age.
- The Geoduck constitutes a species of large edible clam from the family Hiatellidae that developed endemically in a restricted area of the ocean.
- This strangely fascinating small marine species also represents the largest burrowing bivalve mollusk currently known to man.
- The common name for this highly uniquely shaped species actually derives from the language of the Nisqually. This is a Native American tribe indigenous to the region it inhabits.
Geoduck Physical Description
The shell of the Geoduck may attain a length of as much as 8 in (20 cm). However, it also forms elongated siphons, which creates an overall length that averages roughly 3.3 ft (1 m). That is really stretching things.
Their weight is about 1.5 lb (0.7 kg), but exceptional specimens may weigh as much as 15 lb (6.8), and be as long as 6.5 ft (2 m). Imagine digging that up at the beach.
The animal also breeds as a broadcast spawner. During its extended lifetime, a female may produce as many as 5 billion eggs.
Species: P. generosa
Geoduck Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
The truly surprising Geoduck lives on the west coast of North America. Specifically, the Geoduck only seems to exist along the coast, from the state of Washington, United States, to British Columbia, Canada.
This species has few natural predators, which contributes to its great longevity. Its only known natural predators are dogfish, sea otters, and starfish.
However, the Geoduck remains a species targeted for commercial fishing.
The creature buries itself in the sand, with only the siphon protruding. Through this, it will draw in water containing the plankton that they feed on.
It seems that (for them at least) laziness pays off.