Wednesday, August 22, 2012


The only other Eastern Boring Clam with which I have had experience is the Rough Piddock, Zirfaea crispata, which is only about 2 inches long.  It bores in very hard clay or soft rock and is fairly common in cold-water areas, although its total range is from Labrador to North Carolina.  The queerest thing about this clam is that each valve of its shell is divided into two approximately equal areas by a radial groove that runs directly from the hinge section to the margin of the shell, about midway on the shell.  The sculpturing of the two areas is vastly different.  The anterior half of the shell is covered with radial ridges or wrinkles, terminating in rasplike teeth at the margin, while the posterior end of each valve is decorated only with concentric growth lines.  It looks almost as if two dissimilar clams had been grafted together at the middle.  The ends of the shells gape widely, but the margins converge and touch near the middle of the clam.

Rough Piddocks are small and very laborious to dig, but they are almost worth it.  As with other Boring Clams, there is a large portion of the meat relative to the length of the shell, since the clam bulges over.  Because of the gaping ends they are very easy to clean, and when the meat is run through a food chopper it makes delicious chowders, patties, or scalloped clams.

Euell Gibbons, Stalking The Blue-Eyed Scallop – Foraging our Native Seacoasts for Food and Pleasure, New York, David McKay Company, Inc., 1964.


I feel like a Rough Piddock.  

Mute (perceived as Dumb), Overlooked, Persistent, Sleepless.  

Boring and Grinding.

I will leave evidence behind. Negative Space (like a Black Hole). 

Piddock and Euell Gibbons Links:



Music Link:

The Box Tops -- I Shall Be Released

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