PORT PHILLIP BAY


Bivalve Mollusc 

Raeta pulchella (Adams & Reeve, 1850)

View scientific description and taxonomy

Scientific Details

Shells of this family are medium to large, some thin for their size, smooth, trigonal in shape, ventral margin rounded, inflated. Shell exterior often smooth, if sculpture present it is concentric. Hinge is strong, left valve with single inverted V-shaped cardinal, right valve with two dorsally joined cardinals, laterals present. Ligament internal, sits in spoon shaped depression in hinge. Adductor muscle scars are approximately equal, pallial sinus well developed. Shells of this species are small, delicate, thin, fragile and inflated. Valves of similar size and shape (equivalve), triangulate in outline, gaping posteriorly. Umbones approximately central. Anterior margin rounded, postero-dorsal margin straight, and posterior area somewhat rostrate. Shell white, with undulate, concentric ridges on the exterior. Outer covering (periostracum) sometimes present, thin and papery, more evident near ventral and posterior margins. Hinge plate broad, thin, two dorsally joined cardinal teeth in each valve giving the appearance of an inverted V, lateral teeth present; large internal ligament.

Taxonomy

Phylum:
Mollusca
Subphylum:
Conchifera
Class:
Bivalvia
Subclass:
Heterodonta
Order:
Veneroida
Superfamily:
Mactroidea
Family:
Mactridae
Subfamily:
Pteropsellinae
Genus:
Raeta
Subgenus:
Raetella
Species:
pulchella

General Description

This species can be distinguished from other small, white Victorian bivalves by its thin, fragile shell, inflated triangulate shape, undulate or ridged exterior and obvious internal ligament. Shell up to 12 mm across.

Biology

This is an Indo-west Pacific species, recorded from Borneo, China and Japan. It is not known from areas outside its natural distribution and there are only a few records of it from Port Phillip Bay, Victoria.

Habitat

In fine grained sand or mud, in sheltered waters, from low tide to depth of 100 m.

Soft substrates

Coastal shores

Distribution guide

Borneo, China, Japan and Victoria.

Species Group

Sea snails and shells Bivalves

Depth

Shore (0-1 m)
Shallow (1-30 m)
Deep ( > 30 m)

Water Column

On or near sea floor

Max Size

12 mm

Diet

Organic matter

Commercial Species

No

Conservation Status

  • DSE Advisory List : Not listed
  • EPBC Act 1999 : Not listed
  • IUCN Red List : Not listed

Author

article author Boyd, S.

Sue Boyd is an Honorary Associate in marine invertebrates at Museum Victoria.

citation

Cite this page as:
Boyd, S., 2011, Bivalve Mollusc, Raeta pulchella, in Taxonomic Toolkit for marine life of Port Phillip Bay, Museum Victoria, accessed 19 Sep 2017, http://portphillipmarinelife.net.au:8098/species/5635

Text: creative commons cc by licence