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up to 12 centimeters


outside black-brown; inside yellow-whitte or white


sometimes older than 400 years




crabs, beam trawlers



  • Dut: Noordkromp
  • Lat: Arctica islandica
  • Eng: Quahog (Islandic cyprine)
  • Ger: Islandmuschel
  • Dan: Molbo°sters
Quahog (Islandic cyprine), Ecomare

Quahog (Icelandic cyprine)

Quahogs can reach a very ripe old age, more than 400 years!. That makes them the oldest animals in the world. However,ámore than 99% of the quahogs do not come close to growing so old, due to the beam-trawl fisheries. Traces of damage can often be discovered in the year rings.

  • Distribution
    Quahog (Islandic cyprine), Ecomare

    Quahogs are found from Iceland to the Gulf of Biscay. They live close to the surface, dug into the sea floor under water surfaces up to around 100 meters. It is unusual to find shells from the quahog along the Dutch beaches, although they are found more often on the eastern Wadden Islands. Strange enough, you only find left valves. That has to do with the shape of the valves and theásea currents they follow. Right valves strand elsewhere. The same holds true for shoes. You find mostly left shoes along the Dutch coast. If you want to find the right shoes, you'll have to look along the Scottish beaches!