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iced98lx
05/25/2017, 09:34 AM
Hello Clam folks! A local LFS got this clam in several months ago and the owner was keeping it in his personal system until a couple days ago when he brought it to the store. I bought it after verifying that it had been in that long and brought it home this morning. After a fairly brisk acclimation (it came out of a coral system with matching salinity and temperature) I placed it on the sand bed of my 180 gallon tank. It is roughly 5-6 inches. I snapped this photo about 2 hours after it went in, under T5's waiting for the LEDs to kick in (phone pic, sorry for the blurriness):

https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4199/34754728931_efccbf1ab9_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/UXa55k)
IMG_20170525_102006_DRO (https://flic.kr/p/UXa55k) by Christopher Uthe (https://www.flickr.com/photos/chrisuthe/), on Flickr

I was quite happy withe purchase and assumed it was a Maxima but reading a few posts about Tahitian clams dying has me a little worried.

iced98lx
05/25/2017, 12:45 PM
Here is a quick top down:

https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4223/34758080851_19c5363fca_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/UXsfu4)
Maxima Clam (https://flic.kr/p/UXsfu4) by Christopher Uthe (https://www.flickr.com/photos/chrisuthe/), on Flickr

jda
05/25/2017, 07:32 PM
Yes, it is a maxima. It will need all the light that you can give it. I don't know if it is Tahitian, or not... could be at that size. Most Tahaitans don't have scutes that are so pronounced... but some do.

Does it have any new shell growth from the previous owner? Unlike most inhabitants, you want to buy clams as soon as they leave the ocean to ensure that they receive proper care ASAP - they can look really good for six months or more while dying the whole time... and most people don't care for them properly. New shell growth is the only positive-positive that you have with a clam.

I would get it attached to a rock and get it up as close to the lights as possible. Maximas are rock attaching clams, not sandbed clams.

iced98lx
05/26/2017, 09:28 AM
Thanks for the response jda. It does appear to have new growth that is not very old but I will continue to monitor for growth in my tank to verify health. I have it sitting on some rock rubble but I will move it up into some rocks ASAP. I am correct in assuming it is not after direct flow right?

jda
05/26/2017, 01:09 PM
They can handle some flow. They don't need to be blasted out of the tank - the guys who measure their manhood with how much flow that they have is probably not good for clams.

Post a shot of the clam when closed. That will show any new growth that is there. When it comes, it usually comes 1/4 to 1/2 inch at a time.

iced98lx
08/17/2017, 09:29 AM
So, yesterday (3 months later eek) I got around to getting the flow situated so I could move it up into the rockwork without being blasted by MP40's. I had it positioned on the sand bed so I couldn't really see the sides easily, when I placed it on a rock and had a good look I saw this:

https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4355/35821564663_56b6e9118b_b.jpg

Appears my little Maxima decided it liked the sand enough to grow a bit? Either way it's in quite a bit more light now so hopefully it keeps going.

jda
08/17/2017, 09:32 AM
The new growth is the only good sign that clams give off. This is good news indeed.

iced98lx
08/17/2017, 09:36 AM
The new growth is the only good sign that clams give off. This is good news indeed.

I've noticed that depending on the week the clam will be more or less "open" I've basically written it off as changes in water / mood and not 'it's happy/unhappy' so seeing the growth was a big upper for me.

jda
08/17/2017, 09:45 AM
Some book that I read a long time ago said that if they are wide-azz open all the time, this is usually not good. Regulating how open they are means that they are well-fed, safe and secure and it is OK even if the amount being open is variable from time to time. Most of mine are about 80-90%, but you can see them go open even more right before they close off (I call it clam sneezing) to blow debris off of them.

That being said, I had a crocea once that was wide open all of the time and I had to move it to a bigger tank after a handful of years.

iced98lx
08/25/2017, 08:50 AM
Turns out this clam should have been left in the sand bed, where it was growing.

It looked okay on the rocks, where I assumed it wasn't opening because it had plenty of light / was getting used to the light. As of this morning it appears this clam is dead.

I has very fresh new growth on it, so I have to assume it didn't care for it's new home.

jda
08/26/2017, 05:32 PM
If it just died recently, then it was dying for the last couple of months. This was not because of you moving it. Be careful not to confuse the white shell where the mantle open/close with new growth - new growth usually comes a half-inch at a time and is un-mistakable with new scutes and stuff.

iced98lx
08/28/2017, 10:56 AM
If it just died recently, then it was dying for the last couple of months. This was not because of you moving it. Be careful not to confuse the white shell where the mantle open/close with new growth - new growth usually comes a half-inch at a time and is un-mistakable with new scutes and stuff.

I suspect highly this is new growth:

https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4373/36038016384_be4deb03aa_c.jpg


I would assume clams can die suddenly while growing- it just wouldn't be death due to starvation as is often the case of clams in captivity. Quite possible something else happened to cause sudden demise. I blamed moving it up but it could have been anything from flow, to a contaminant in my tank to many other things, even possible I injured it when moving it. My assessment was simply based on the continued health of other animals in my tank and lack of unusual changes in water chemistry/temperature/lighting. I can take the shell out and photograph it if it would assist anyone in the future as well.

Either way, it is always unfortunate to loose an animal in our care. I will have to reassess the viability of keeping clams in the future when I'm ready to try again.

jda
08/28/2017, 02:01 PM
If it was happy, it would have kept growing and making new shell. Growth usually comes a half inch to an inch at a time and is complete from end to end.

This is likely nothing that you did. These clams are really hard. Mot people don't even have enough lights to keep them anymore, and they were hard before when people did. I would barely give this clam 50/50 in a frag tank 4-6" under the water under a 400W MH.

The mostly likely scenario is that it started dying shortly after it was collected and spent it's life in low-output lighting and slowly starved to death. Clams are the ultimate in false positive since they often look great right up until the day that they die even though they were starving the whole time. This is why I don't want to buy clams that have been at a LFS for a long time - although this is good for fish to get them acclimated, this is bad for clams since they have been likely starving under their Radions or Kessils the whole time.

Dereasa and Squamosa are great clams and are easier. Check them out next time.

iced98lx
08/28/2017, 08:04 PM
there is 3/4 inch of new shell, which is what I'm pointing out, the thing was growing.

I'm not arguing many/most of these starve to death, you're saying the only way to know if it's OK is if it grows, it grew suddenly and rapidly in my tank after not growing for 2 months, then it died. I'm simply pointing out you can kill a clam in ways other than starving it, and I suspect it died of something else.