A sad clam story that may turned OK

jim norris

In Memoriam
Maybe this story will turn out OK. The other day I remove my oldest clam (derasa) for his weekly inspection. I DROPPED him! He fell five feet right on to the tile floor. He schatter in about five pieces. Now this clam is about 8 inches plus and I have had him many years. He is my first clam and he was about one inch when I got him. My heart fell to my feet. I picked him up and he was a mess. Inners hanging out of a 3 by 3 piece of shell that broke off. The other pieces I found also. I took him over to the sink lay him on a towel and said to myself you are not going to die! I grab three tubes of super gel and GLUE him back together after putting his inners all in place. I place him back into the tank. After two days he was not opening I thought omy god I have glue him shut! On the third day he opened and after 8 days he is almost totally opened. I picked him up the other day and the shell was still together. Now his shell has an interesting pattern. And I hope he is going to be ok. I will update you all as he goes if interested.
Hi Jim,
What a story! I feel for you man. If I could suggest reinforcing the glued joints with something. Perhaps Ron, Eric or Randy could suggest some type of mortar that would be "reef-safe"? It's my experience that eventually super glue will loosen it's grip, and with the clam being all muscle it could be a problem down the road.

I hope your clam survives this ordeal.
Re: A sad clam story that may turned OK

Jim, I could hardly read this. I hope that he will be ok. I hope you will be ok. If he opened up, I think he may be well on his way in healing. Holly
Hi Jim,

I know how it feels like this. But am very glad to hear the good news.

Just a thought <hope it's relevant and helps>, maybe for now you just want to leave him untouched, but visually inspect him often everyday in case of attack from other critters nearby.

Let's hope he heals quick, give him as much rest possible and avoid causing him to use his energy unnecessarily eg. retracting his mantle unnecessarily when someone is nearby watching him.
Good advise! I have put him in my 55 hex where there is only a kole tang and three Big clams. I did pick him up this am and all is still intacted. I am watching the glued areas to make sure they are holding and maybe healing!!!! I have some pictures I will post tonight.
Jim, I too could hardly read this. I so remember this clam from my visit to your house. I hope that he will be ok and the glue will hold. When hreef called me about this I immediately thought of the turtles they show on TV with shells that have been cracked or worse by boat propellers and wondered if something like that could help mend this big clam. I hope you are doing ok too. I know it is very stressful to you too. It's like the day my green with purple rim capricornis was dropped and all I could do was watch it fall. Time seemed to slow to nothing.

Please keep us updated and Good Luck.

my 180 ecosystem sps tank:
my 120 ecosystem sps/clam tank:
Jim, remembering you told this story to me on the phone the other night and I felt so bad. I am glad that he is doing ok, keep us posted.

Sorry to hear about what happend. I feel for ya man, as just the other day I was cleaning the glass and my magnet broke loose and landed on my Derasa chipping off a good chunk of shell. Not a good feeling I know:eek: .

Hope all turn out well for you.
Wow that is heart wrenching...My thought was like Sue's I thought of the Turtles and I know they often use Fiberglass to reinforce their shells after damage...
Good Luck,
Actually I work at a car repair shop. I can get fiber glass. The thought is with me on this! As of right now the big guy is doing GREAT! I will update with photos tonight.
I was reading about a bristleworm which will bore a hole in clams and feed on them..Sprung..Delbeek vol 1 (I believe). Anyhow, apparently if you remove the worm the clam can form a new solid matrix over the hole.

Maybe the shells can be repaired by the clam?? I have no experience in this area...I just read about it..thats all.
Good Luck
I can get the reference if you want it..
Thank you I have his books. That is what I hoping for! So far it has been about 2 weeks and he is doing good! Last night I took him out and super feed him. (I think he ate almost a 30 oz bottle of DTs). Pictures coming.
The clam will repair it's shell by adding new growth on the inside to cover the cracks. I've found shells at the beach before that have been severely broken and have healed by themselves. Good luck.
Hi Jim,

Oh my! What a story :eek2:. I'm really glad to hear that your clam is doing so well after such a fall. Incredible!

You said that you were taking him out to give him his weekly inspection. Why do you do that? I have 3 clams and have never even tried to move them let alone take them out of my tank. Should I be checking mine regularly too??