26 Jun '15, 4am

The Annotated Budak: A beastiary of clams by @budak

Beekman has suggested that the male animals may have been Tridacna maxima , a species that exhibits relatively weak vertical folds and close-set, scarcely prominent scutes, and which partially embeds itself into coral rubble and other reef substrates. The females were probably the Tridacna squamosa of modern nomenclature, a giant clam with deeply fluted valves and a formidable array of scutes (scales), which serve in young individuals as an adaptation against predatory crabs and fish. Rumphius may have been sexually confused, but his comments on mature specimens ring true; large giant clams, such as one encountered in repeated surveys of patch reefs near Pulau Semakau, may have shells bereft of their "nails" after years of bites and being rocked against nearby rocks by unruly waves.

Full article: http://budak.blogs.com/the_annotated_budak/2015/06/gape.html


The Annotated Budak: In a pinch

The Annotated Budak: In a pinch

budak.blogs.com 16 Jun '15, 4am

During these few hours of blight, the xanthids tend to lie low, shuffling between cover as they graze or grapple with more...