How long do they live? The oldest recorded Pacific geoduck was 168 years old when it was pulled from the water . Geoduck is pronounced “gooey duck.”
Where are they found? Along the west coast of North America in the soft bottom of the northeast Pacific Ocean .
What do they eat? Pacific geoducks are filter feeders and they use a siphon to bring in water, which carries with it fish larvae and plankton for nutrition .
What do they look like? Unlike other bivalves, the bodies of Pacific geoducks grow much larger than their shells. Some Pacific geoducks grow to be over 3 feet long, yet their shells are usually only 8 inches in length . See figures 1, 2, and 3.
How do they reproduce? Pacific geoducks in the wild reach sexual maturity around 2 years old . They reproduce by spawning and long-lived females can produce up to 5 billion eggs during her lifetime. This may very well be another species that exhibits negligible senescence.
How do scientists know how old they are? Researchers can estimate the age of a geoduck based on the growth increments of the shell. Recently, bomb radiocarbon dating confirmed the long lifespans of these creatures .
So what are we lacking? It’s 11/10/2016 and this is the end of one of the strangest US elections ever. So tonight I will use bullet points.
- We need more information concerning the reproductive cycle of this species, specifically if it ends.
- Panopea generosa has not be assessed for conservation status.
- The mitochondrial genome for Panopea generosa is available on the NCBI website, but no nuclear data has been added.
Conservation status: Unknown, which is a shame considering they can reach such astounding lifespans.
Please contact me if you’d like to contribute any information about this unique and long-lived species.
- Orensanz, J. M., et al. “Precaution in the harvest of Methuselah’s clams the difficulty of getting timely feedback from slow-paced dynamics.” Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 61.8 (2004): 1355-1372.
- Oceana.org. Geoduck. http://oceana.org/marine-life/cephalopods-crustaceans-other-shellfish/geoduck Accessed 11/10/2016
- Kastelle, Craig R., et al. “Bomb-produced radiocarbon validation of growth-increment crossdating allows marine paleoclimate reconstruction.” Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 311.1 (2011): 126-135.
- Vadopalas, Brent, Jonathan P. Davis, and Carolyn S. Friedman. “Maturation, spawning, and fecundity of the farmed Pacific geoduck Panopea generosa in Puget Sound, Washington.” Journal of Shellfish Research 34.1 (2015): 31-37.