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razor clams at 13 days
13 day old razor clams

Razor clams

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Razor clam food

Razor clams feed on a variety of phytoplankton, such as diatoms and dinoflagellates. These include: PleurosigmaCeratiumStephanopyxis sp., Attheya armatusAsterionellopsis, and Thalassiosira. A diatom, Pseudo-nitzschia, produces domoic acid. For reasons yet unknown to researchers, this diatom doesn't always produce domoic acid. Research is focused on finding the link between abundance and variety of diatoms and dinoflagellates with levels of domoic acid. Assessments of the composition of phytoplankton species and levels are used to enhance west coast harmful algal bloom research.

Here is a microscopic look at the phytoplankton that makes up an Oregon razor clam’s diet:

Chaetoceros debilis
Chaetoceros debilis 
Odontella longicarius
Odontella longicarius 
Diytlum brightwellii
Diytlum brightwellii
Pleurosigma sp.
Pleurosigma sp.
Thalassiosira sp. and Asterionellopsis sp.
Thalassiosira sp. and Asterionellopsis sp.
Stephanopyxis sp. Attheya armatus sp.
Stephanopyxis sp. Attheya armatus sp.
Pseudo-nitzschia
Pseudo-nitzschia
Dinoflagellates
Ceratium sp.
Ceratium sp.
Protoperidinium sp.
Protoperidinium sp.
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