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The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has added a link to a translation service developed by Microsoft Inc., entitled Bing Translator, as a convenience to visitors to the DEC website who speak languages other than English.

Additional information can be found at DEC's Language Assistance Page.


Did You Know?

The bands or rings on a clams
outer shell indicates its age, much
like rings on a tree. One year
of growth is one full ring.
~Photo courtesy of NOAA~
  • Mollusks like clams, oysters, mussels, and conch are soft-bodied animals that build their own hard-outer shell for protection. To create the shell, they use an organ called a "mantle" to secrete a hard substance known as "nacre" over their body. A mollusks shell is often times washed up on the beach after it dies.
  • Pearls are formed inside mollusks. They form when a sand grain or other irritating particle gets stuck inside the mollusks shell. To protect itself, the mollusk covers the particle with a substance called nacre, which is the material that covers the inside of its shell. After several layers of nacre covers the sand grain a pearl takes shape. Today, many pearls come from cultured or farmed mollusks and finding one in the wild is a one in a million chance.
  • Molluscan shellfish have siphons that skim out food like microscopic plants and animals (phytoplankton and zooplankton) from the water. This is known as filter-feeding.
  • Shellfish like oysters, clams, mussels and scallops are called "bivalves" because they have two halves that are held together by a ligament. A strong adductor muscle helps keep the two valves close.

Harvesting Shellfish:Visit the Shellfishing webpages for information on recreationally and commercially harvesting these animals.

New York's Mollusks

(Click on the links to get information and facts on each mollusk)

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  • Bureau of Marine Resources
    205 N. Belle Mead Road
    Suite 1
    East Setauket, NY 11733
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  • Page applies to NYS Marine Costal District