- Edible Mussel
Shell wedge shaped with rounded apex (umbo) near anterior end. Valve posterior is expanded and rounded. Exterior is smooth, except for concentric growth lines (striae). Outer shell colour black to purple-blue black (juveniles maybe brown), inner shell white to blue-white. Shell up to 12 cm across.
This species is closely related to the European edible mussel and has been assigned sub-species status of that mussel. Individuals attach by threads (byssus) to pier pylons, rocks and sandy sea floors. Their distribution is limited by water temperature and salinity. They are commercially harvested, are an important indicator species of heavy metal pollution, and can grow rapidly, sometimes reaching 9 cm in a year. Specimens can live for up to 25 years. Small pea crabs are often found living inside the two shell halves.
Various habitats including estuaries and sheltered marine areas, from low tide area to depth of 15 m.
- DSE Advisory List : Not listed
- EPBC Act 1999 : Not listed
- IUCN Red List : Not listed