Tridacna gigas Clam Growth Captured Over 30 Year Span [Video]


To say that I have an infatuation with Tridacnid clams is an understatement. I am absolutely obsessed with the beautiful giants and I take every opportunity to share them with my fellow aquarists. The latest online material to catch my eye is a compilation video by Bruce Carlson showing off the giant clams of the Waikiki Aquarium, in particular a 35 year old Tridacna gigas named “Gigas-77” that has been with the exhibit since 1982. The video chronologically documents the clam’s weight as it has increased over the years, starting with the first weigh-in back in 1990 when the clam was estimated to be around 13 years old. At that check up, it weighed 94 pounds!

Subsequent weigh-ins show the steady growth of the T. gigas clam up to its most recent check up in 2002 when it was moved to a new exibit. At that time, the then 20 year old clam tipped the scales as an almost 170-pound giant and was already several feet across. It is estimated that “Gigas-77” will live at least another half century and could eventually weigh well over 600 pounds. We obviously would love to see a new weigh-in conducted in another decade or so, but by then the clam may be way too large to remove from the tank.


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