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  #1  
Old 10-30-2007, 09:44 AM
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Old dead clam

Scientists Find Oldest Living Animal, Then Kill It

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The world's oldest living animal until recently.

British marine biologists have found what may be the oldest living animal — that is, until they killed it.

The team from Bangor University in Wales was dredging the waters north of Iceland as part of routine research when the unfortunate specimen, belonging to the clam species Arctica islandica, commonly known as the ocean quahog, was hauled up from waters 250 feet deep.

Only after researchers cut through its shell, which made it more of an ex-clam, and counted its growth rings did they realize how old it had been — between 405 and 410 years old.

Another clam of the same species had been verified at 220 years old, and a third may have lived 374 years. But this most recent clam was the oldest yet.

"Its death is an unfortunate aspect of this work, but we hope to derive lots of information from it," postdoctoral scientist Al Wanamaker told London's Guardian newspaper. "For our work, it's a bonus, but it wasn't good for this particular animal."

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  #2  
Old 10-30-2007, 09:57 AM
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Bummer. I did my senior project in ecology on the effect of malathion on the northern quahog. Hell, I tried to kill em, and couldn't do it.
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  #3  
Old 10-30-2007, 10:27 AM
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Curiosity killed the cat.....and now the clams.
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Old 10-30-2007, 10:30 AM
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Damn, they could have fried it first. Although at 400+ it may have been a tad on the tough side.

I can just imagine the look on the guy's or gal's face as they're counting growth rings and gets to 200 only to realize they're only about 1/2 way through. D'OH!
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Old 10-30-2007, 10:38 AM
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Who knows the age of the oldest Bearded Clam? I like studying the younger ones, but doubt I'd be interested in the old ones . . .
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  #6  
Old 10-30-2007, 10:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dee8go View Post
Who knows the age of the oldest Bearded Clam?
Nobody wants to be the one to count the growth rings. So it remains a mystery.
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Old 10-30-2007, 10:44 AM
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Who knows the age of the oldest Bearded Clam? I like studying the younger ones, but doubt I'd be interested in the old ones . . .
I was wondering how long it would take for this thread to turn! It took 4 replies but I knew I could count on you Dee
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  #8  
Old 10-30-2007, 10:51 AM
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Glad I didn't disappoint!
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  #9  
Old 10-30-2007, 11:20 AM
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Thank you Bot.

News from the "Mother Land".
I’ll add this to my seemingly ever growing list of good reasons for moving here.

“Wasn’t good for this particular animal.”, he says.
Well no sh-t Sherlock Holmes. It bloody hell wasn’t.
Brilliant conclusion there Mr. Science.

Dee – You need help. Or a good shag. One.
Chad – That’s a sick picture you painted.


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  #10  
Old 10-30-2007, 11:24 AM
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Thank you Bot.

. . .
Dee – You need help. Or a good shag. One.
Chad – That’s a sick picture you painted.


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  #11  
Old 10-30-2007, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by WVOtoGO View Post
Dee – You need help. Or a good shag. One.
Chad – That’s a sick picture you painted.


DJ
Sorry for the mental violation.
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  #12  
Old 10-30-2007, 11:56 AM
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I hope the scientists never decide to investigate MY age. It sounds very painful.
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  #13  
Old 10-30-2007, 12:20 PM
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If they would start issuing social security #'s to quahogs, they wouldn't have to kill them to find out their birth year... but 345 years of collecting bennies is probably too large a price to pay for that information.
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  #14  
Old 10-30-2007, 12:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad300tdt View Post
Nobody wants to be the one to count the growth rings. So it remains a mystery.
Differentiation of age in bearded clam populations is problematic due to non-uniform, age non-specific crenellation of the corium and epidermis.
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Old 10-30-2007, 01:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WVOtoGO View Post
Thank you Bot.

News from the "Mother Land".
I’ll add this to my seemingly ever growing list of good reasons for moving here.

“Wasn’t good for this particular animal.”, he says.
Well no sh-t Sherlock Holmes. It bloody hell wasn’t.
Brilliant conclusion there Mr. Science.

Dee – You need help. Or a good shag. One.
Chad – That’s a sick picture you painted.


DJ
That's why we have light switches....

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