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Callistochiton antiquus (Reeve, 1847)

Description: Girdle moderately broad, valves sculpture strong but variable. Head valve with 10-14 strong radial ribs. Median valves with dorsal and pleural areas with a beaded, latticed network; lateral area with 2 strong, irregularly nodulose ribs. Girdle densely covered with small oval shaped scales, up to 0.16 mm long, with 16 riblets on lower part. Colour fawn to dark brown, often encrusted with marine growth.

Size: Up to 30 mm in length.

Distribution: From Cooktown, Qld, southwards and around southern Australia to south-western WA, including Tas.

Habitat: Lives on rocky shores in the low intertidal and shallow subtidal. Common.

Comparison: In southern Australia this species is distinguished by the uniformly brown colour and the two strong ribs on the valves.

Synonymy: There has been 6 species or subspecies named based on sculptural variations, as listed by Gowlett-Holmes (2001) in the Zoological Catalogue of Australia.

Fig. 1: Disaster Bay, NSW (C.365207).

Fig. 2: Same specimen as Fig. 1. Edge of valve and girdle scales.

Copyright Des Beechey 2019