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Butterfly Shell

Donax variabilis Say 1822

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Other common names for Donax variabilis include bean clam, butterfly clam, donax clam, and southern coquina.

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bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
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Behavior

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There is no known social communication between coquinas. However, they have a tendency to live within close proximity of each other, most likely due to favorable environmental factors for the clams.

Perception Channels: tactile ; chemical

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bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
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Conservation Status

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Coquinas are not listed in the IUCN, as they are very common along beaches in the eastern United States. However, coquinas face certain challenges, such as rising sea levels, global warming, and beach erosion. Laws and regulations that curtail erosion and maintain the natural flow of sand on beaches benefit populations of this clam.

US Federal List: no special status

CITES: no special status

State of Michigan List: no special status

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cc-by-nc-sa-3.0
copyright
The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors
bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
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Life Cycle

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Coquina clams undergo indirect development, first from a trochophore larva to a veliger larva. The veliger larva uses its ciliated velum for swimming and feeding on plankton. Eventually, the veliger will settle to the seafloor, where it undergoes metamorphosis to the adult stage.

Development - Life Cycle: metamorphosis

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cc-by-nc-sa-3.0
copyright
The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors
bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
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Benefits

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Through their filter-feeding, coquinas can concentrate toxins and harmful organisms (bacteria, viruses, etc) that may cause harm to humans when eaten.

Negative Impacts: injures humans (causes disease in humans , carries human disease, poisonous )

license
cc-by-nc-sa-3.0
copyright
The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors
bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
visit source
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Benefits

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Coquinas are eaten and used as decoration because of their colorful markings. The shells are also be used in ornamental landscaping.

Positive Impacts: food ; body parts are source of valuable material

license
cc-by-nc-sa-3.0
copyright
The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors
bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
visit source
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Animal Diversity Web

Associations

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Coquinas serve as food sources for shorebirds, fish, and humans. In addition, the abundance of coquinas on beaches is an indicator of the beach habitat’s ability to sustain life. A beach with a large number of coquinas indicates a healthy beach habitat due to the presence of naturally-formed sand and the absence of external factors such as human construction.

license
cc-by-nc-sa-3.0
copyright
The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors
bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
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Trophic Strategy

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Coquinas are filter feeders, feeding primarily on phytoplankton, algae, detritus, bacteria, and other small particles suspended in the surf as the waves ebb and flow. Feeding is performed through the use of short siphons.

Plant Foods: algae; phytoplankton

Other Foods: detritus ; microbes

Foraging Behavior: filter-feeding

Primary Diet: planktivore ; detritivore

license
cc-by-nc-sa-3.0
copyright
The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors
bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
visit source
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Distribution

provided by Animal Diversity Web

The coquina clam, Donax variabilis, ranges from the eastern coast of the United States, from New York to the Caribbean, and across the Gulf of Mexico and into Texas.

Biogeographic Regions: nearctic (Native ); atlantic ocean (Native )

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cc-by-nc-sa-3.0
copyright
The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors
bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
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Habitat

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Coquina clams are commonly found at sandy beach fronts in the intertidal zone, where the tides ebb and flow. Some can also be found in knee-deep waters.

Habitat Regions: saltwater or marine

Aquatic Biomes: coastal

Other Habitat Features: intertidal or littoral

license
cc-by-nc-sa-3.0
copyright
The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors
bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
visit source
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Life Expectancy

provided by Animal Diversity Web

Coquinas typically live between 1 to 2 years in the wild but can only live up to 3 days in the absence of moving water. Lack of water deprives the coquina of nutrients obtained through filter feeding.

Typical lifespan
Status: wild:
2 (high) years.

license
cc-by-nc-sa-3.0
copyright
The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors
bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
visit source
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Animal Diversity Web

Morphology

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Coquinas have small, long, triangular-shaped shells, ranging from 15 to 25 cm in length. These shells contain very colorful bands, with a range of colors anywhere from red to violet.

Range length: 15 to 25 mm.

Other Physical Features: ectothermic ; bilateral symmetry

Sexual Dimorphism: sexes alike

license
cc-by-nc-sa-3.0
copyright
The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors
bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
visit source
partner site
Animal Diversity Web

Associations

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Coquinas are consumed by various fish (such as Trachinotus carolinus and Menticirrhus spp.), shore birds, and humans (Homo sapiens).

Known Predators:

  • Pompanos (Trachinotus carolinus)
  • whiting, Menticirrhus spp
  • shorebirds
  • shorebirds
  • Humans (Homo sapiens)
license
cc-by-nc-sa-3.0
copyright
The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors
bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
visit source
partner site
Animal Diversity Web

Reproduction

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Coquinas typically live in close proximity of each other, sometimes in colonies. They release their gametes when gravid and their close proximity with each other heightens the chances of fertilization.

Coquina clams are dioecious (male and female) broadcast spawners. Eggs and sperm are released synchronously into the water for external fertilization.

Breeding interval: Gametes are released when gravid

Key Reproductive Features: gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); sexual ; fertilization (External ); broadcast (group) spawning; oviparous

There is no form of parental care. Fertilization occurs externally and larvae are left to feed and swim independently.

Parental Investment: no parental involvement

license
cc-by-nc-sa-3.0
copyright
The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors
bibliographic citation
Luna, M. and J. To 2011. "Donax variabilis" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed April 27, 2013 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Donax_variabilis.html
author
Mike Luna, Rutgers University
author
Jonathan To, Rutgers University
editor
David V. Howe, Rutgers University
editor
Renee Mulcrone, Special Projects
original
visit source
partner site
Animal Diversity Web

Donax variabilis

provided by wikipedia EN

Donax variabilis, known by the common name coquina, is a species of small edible saltwater clam, a marine bivalve mollusc in the family Donacidae, the bean clams. It is a warm water species which occurs in shallow water on sandy beaches on the east coast of the United States.

Distribution

This species occurs on the east coast of the United States, from Cape May, New Jersey to Florida including East Florida, West Florida and the Florida Keys.[1]

Description

The maximum reported size is 19 mm (0.75 in).[1] The exterior of the small shell of this species can have any one of a wide range of possible colors, from almost white, through yellow, pink, orange, red, purple, to brownish and blueish, with or without the presence of darker rays.[2][3]

Biology

This species lives from the intertidal zone of sandy beaches to a depth of 11 m (36 ft).[4] As most mollusks, the coquina is host to a variety of parasites. On the Atlantic Coast of the United States, studies have shown that coquinas harbour the larval stages (cercariae, sporocysts) of at least three species of digeneans (none of these represents a danger for humans).[5]

Human uses

The coquina is edible and is used to make broth. Some people collect the colorful shells to use for crafts.

See also

  • Donax fossor, a similar species with a more northern distribution

References

  1. ^ a b Rosenberg, G. 2009. Malacolog 4.1.1: A Database of Western Atlantic Marine Mollusca. [WWW database (version 4.1.1)] URL http://www.malacolog.org/
  2. ^ iLoveShelling, "Crayola Color Wheel Coquinas" Nov 8th [1] Accessed 2014-9-26
  3. ^ iLoveShelling, "Coquina Butterfly Kisses" July 14 [2] Accessed 2014-9-26
  4. ^ Rosenberg, G. 2009. Malacolog 4.1.1: A Database of Western Atlantic Marine Mollusca. [WWW database (version 4.1.1)] URL http://www.malacolog.org/
  5. ^ Hill-Spanik, Kristina M.; Sams, Claudia; Connors, Vincent A.; Bricker, Tessa; de Buron, Isaure (2021). "Molecular data reshape our understanding of the life cycles of three digeneans (Monorchiidae and Gymnophallidae) infecting the bivalve, Donax variabilis: it's just a facultative host!". Parasite. 28: 34. doi:10.1051/parasite/2021027. ISSN 1776-1042. PMID 33835020. open access
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wikipedia EN

Donax variabilis: Brief Summary

provided by wikipedia EN

Donax variabilis, known by the common name coquina, is a species of small edible saltwater clam, a marine bivalve mollusc in the family Donacidae, the bean clams. It is a warm water species which occurs in shallow water on sandy beaches on the east coast of the United States.

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Distribution

provided by World Register of Marine Species
South of Chesapeake Bay to mid-east Florida but not southernmost Florida; southwest Florida around the Gulf of Mexico to Campeche State.

Reference

Adamkewicz, S. L. & Harasewych, M. G. (). Systematics and biogeography of the genus Donax (Bivalvia: Donacidae) in eastern North America. American Malacological Bulletin. : -.

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bibliographic citation
North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS) Adamkewicz, S. L. & Harasewych, M. G. (1996). Systematics and biogeography of the genus <i>Donax</i> (Bivalvia: Donacidae) in eastern North America. <em>American Malacological Bulletin.</em> 13: 97-103.
contributor
Kennedy, Mary [email]
contributor
Kennedy, Mary [email]