|Researched by||Saskiya Richards||Refereed by||Admin|
|Authority||(O. F. Müller, 1776)|
|Other common names||-||Synonyms||-|
Abra nitida has an oval-shaped shell of two valves (halves) that are of the same shape and size and up to 2 cm in length and 1.2 cm in height. The valves are asymmetrical with the tip of the valves (beak) positioned behind the dorso-ventral mid-line and pointing inwards towards the valves and to the posterior. The shell is brittle to the touch and the surface bears microscopic concentric lines. The external shell surface is a glossy, pearly white, sometimes translucent and is scattered with minute flecks. The interior surface of the hinge is marked with a spoon-shaped pit (chondrophore) near the beak. An indentation is present towards the posterior of the inner hinge as well as adductor muscle scars that are longer and thinner in the anterior region than in the posterior region. The interior of each valve is glossy and translucent in appearance. The right valve bears 2 small, teeth projecting from the hinge and 2 more teeth that are either side of the hinge whereas the left valve bears 1 tooth from the hinge and 2 weaker teeth, again either side of the hinge. The body is simple, bearing a wedge-shaped foot and two very long siphons.
Abra nitida is widespread on the coasts of Britain but less common on the western coast of Ireland.
Abra nitida inhabits self-made burrows in mud, sandy mud, silty sand and muddy gravel in the sublittoral zone to 183 metres.
Abra nitida is similar to both Abra alba, that is larger and less elongate, and Abra prismatica, that is not quite as oval. Abra nitida mainly feeds on detritus.
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Christensen, J.M., 1980. Seashells. Bivalves of the British and Northern European Seas. Revised and adapted by Peter S. Dance. Hamondsworth: Penguin Books Ltd.
Gibson, R., Hextall, B. & Rogers, A., 2001. Photographic guide to the sea and seashore life of Britain and north-west Europe. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Hayward, P.J. & Ryland, J.S. (ed.) 1995b. Handbook of the marine fauna of North-West Europe. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
MBA (Marine Biological Association), 1957. Plymouth Marine Fauna. Plymouth: Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom.
Tebble, N., 1976. British Bivalve Seashells. A Handbook for Identification, 2nd ed. Edinburgh: British Museum (Natural History), Her Majesty's Stationary Office.
Zenetos, A., 1996. The marine Bivalvia (Mollusca) of Greece. Athens: National Centre for Marine Research.
This review can be cited as:
Last Updated: 01/08/2007
Tags: Bivalve Mollusc