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Nuculanidae Adams & Adams, 1858

Common Name: Pointed nut clams


Key morphological features: The shells are equivalve, thin-walled, and elongated oval in shape. Shell material is composed of aragonite and exterior sculpture is occasionally smooth, but usually consists of ridges or threads.

        SIZE: Up to ~70mm

Paleoecology: The Nuculanidae are marine and live infaunally, buried in sand or mud. They are capable of burrowing rapidly and plowing through mud by using their planar foot. Nuculanids can be found worldwide and are most common in the deep sea. Species that live near hydrothermal vents may host endosymbiotic bacteria that oxidize sulfur.

        MOBILITY: Mobile (burrow)

        FEEDING MODE: Deposit Feeder/Suspension Feeder

        HABITAT: Infaunal


Mikkelsen, P.M., and Bieler, R. 2008. Seashells of Southern Florida: Bivalves. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press. 503 pp.

Cox, L.R., et al. 1969. Systematic Descriptions, in Moore, R. C., ed., Treatise on Invertebrate Paleontology, Part N, Mollusca 6, Volume 1. The University of Kansas and Geological Society of America. 489 pp. 

Genera of Nuculanidae present in the Cretaceous of the Western Interior Seaway