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Thread: 400-year-old clam

  1. #1
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    400-year-old clam

    Bloomberg: 400-Year-Old Clam Found in Iceland's Waters, Scientists Say

    A clam estimated to be more than 400 years old was found in waters off Iceland, making it the longest-lived recorded animal, scientists at Bangor University in Wales said.

    The quahog clam, or Arctica islandica, was dredged from the waters in 2006 and its age assessed by counting the growth lines in the shell, according to the university's Web site.
    Edit: Better, non-commercial source: Bangor University: 400 year old Clam Found

    It is very likely that longer lived individuals of the species remain to be found. Although Icelandic waters seem to provide the ideal conditions for extreme longevity, clams with lifetimes well in excess of 200 years have been found both in the Irish Sea and the North Sea.

    So why do these clams live so long? The Bangor scientists are intrigued to find out and believe that the clams may have evolved exceptionally effective defences which hold back the destructive ageing processes that normally occur.
    Last edited by 01101001; 2007-Oct-29 at 10:47 PM.
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    Skepticism enables us to distinguish fancy from fact, to test our speculations. --Carl Sagan

  2. #2
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    Poor thing

  3. #3
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    Mmmm! Quahog clam chowder. Yum-Yum.

  4. #4
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    what a way to die.. after surviving various predators for 400 years, out of nowhere you are scooped up out of your world and you "drown" in air..

  5. #5
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    The idiots talking about it on the radio this morning for some reason believed it was still alive.
    They also said it was "born" when Queen Elizabeth I was on the throne. I'm actually not sure what the proper description for a clam should be, but I'm sure it's not "born".
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  6. #6
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    It just faked its birth records.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  7. #7
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    Wait until that clam's daddy finds out what happened. . .

  8. #8
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    The Great Great Granny Clam... <sigh>

  9. #9
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    Here is a bbc news on this.

  10. #10
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    Surviving predators for so long is the wonder about it...

  11. #11
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    Personally, I think it's more likely that the clams live so long because they have a low-energy lifestyle that is slowed further by the cold waters in which they live. Indeed, in my limited readings it seems that many deep-sea organisms are exceptionally long-lived, such as some of the tube worms found at cold seeps in the Gulf of Mexico.

    In any event, this is really cool.

  12. #12
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    If it was still alive, I bet it would clam up in front of the newspaper cameras.
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  13. #13
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    ^
    Or put its foot in its mouth.


  14. #14
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    ^
    They are quite intaverted; they rarely come out of their shell.

    Y'all really must try fried clam legs.
    We know time flies, we just can't see its wings.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by George View Post
    [Snip!] Y'all really must try fried clam legs.
    Do they taste like chicken?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celestial Mechanic View Post
    Do they taste like chicken?
    I don't know, I am only repeating what the local astronomy club members (SAAA) keep telling me. [I shan't mention Keith and Don's names.] The 400 year-old legs are probably a bit tough. Perhaps all legs taste like chicken; mine should based on looks alone.
    We know time flies, we just can't see its wings.

  17. #17
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    Do they taste like chicken?
    Everything tastes like chicken, silly!
    (Except chicken, that tastes like turkey.)
    The greatest journey of all time, for all to see
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    Everything tastes like chicken, silly!
    (Except chicken, that tastes like turkey.)
    *twitch*

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Romanus View Post
    Personally, I think it's more likely that the clams live so long because they have a low-energy lifestyle that is slowed further by the cold waters in which they live. Indeed, in my limited readings it seems that many deep-sea organisms are exceptionally long-lived, such as some of the tube worms found at cold seeps in the Gulf of Mexico.

    In any event, this is really cool.
    That type of environment ought to favor brachiopods, whose metabolic rate and energy demands are considerably lower, moreso than clams.

  20. #20
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    Re: 400-year-old clam

    Too bad this clam went belly-up before spilling its guts.

    But who are we to fritter away our time on such things?

    Shell we move on?


    PS: Perhaps it spent those 400 years flexing its mussels.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maksutov View Post
    Too bad this clam went belly-up before spilling its guts.

    But who are we to fritter away our time on such things?

    Shell we move on?


    PS: Perhaps it spent those 400 years flexing its mussels.


    What a load of molluscs

  22. #22
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    Mak, you oyster not have said that.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  23. #23
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    What a load of molluscs
    Yeah, he must be really maked stov.
    The greatest journey of all time, for all to see
    Every mission makes our dreams reality
    And our destiny begins with you and me
    Through all space and time, the achievement of mankind
    As we sail the sea of discovery, on heroes’ wings we fly!

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