A River Runs Through It

It’s rare that I look at a clam in a reef aquarium and see just the clam. Unless the mantle is completely expanded, what I usually see is a river running through a canyon. I can’t help it. I don’t always see things the way most people view them. The fun thing for my eyes is that each “river” is different and the “canyon” walls are usually rather stunning.
   The other day I saw a picture of a clam and it reminded me that I have a couple of clam shots in the archives that I still like. That sent me on a treasure hunt to find them so I could share them here. I don’t have a favorite. Each has a different appeal
   In the first image I see a river running through some kind of sand-flat canyon. As the river flows south it flows around an elongated island (the clam intake opening) and spills into a small delta before it flows into the ocean. The best part is the whole view is illuminated with electric colors.
   In the second image we have a winding river, hitting a small island in one of the bends. The river has spent many years cutting through a rainbow-colored, delicately translucent canyon, creating tall, vertical walls. Somewhere to the north I’m confident are some spectacular rapids.
   In the mind of a normal person, clams are simply one of the more impressive animals we can keep in a reef aquarium. In my oddly wired mind, there’s much more to see in those multi-colored mantles.-Gary L. Parr, www.gparr.com, www.reefthreads.com

Gary Parr

About Gary Parr

Reef Threads is a podcast and blog that discusses the most interesting subjects from the various forums, blogs, and magazines supporting the reef hobby. Reef Threads is produced by Gary L. Parr and Christine Williams Pasagelis, two veteran reef hobbyists. Gary has been keeping aquariums for most of his life, starting with a 1-gal. bowl of guppies. He has kept reef aquariums for the past 15 years. His current tanks are a 65-gal. LPS and leather reef and a 40 breeder that contains azooxanthellate corals. Gary’s other hobby is photography. He specializes in macro photography and currently spends most of his time photographing coral and marine fish. You can see Gary’s work in the Reefs and Animals sections of his website, www.gparr.com. You can contact Gary at gparr@reefthreads.com. Christine Williams started keeping fish while she was still a fetus. While the aqueous environment did lend itself to the hobby, it limited her to freshwater species, and so she decided to be born several weeks early. Through sign language, she demanded that her parents convert her crib into a reef aquarium and thus started her illustrious career in marine ornamentals. After completing her studies in biochemistry and molecular microbiology she went to work at “Animal ER” where unfortunately she was not filmed for the Animal Planet channel (though her feet did make a cameo during a rescue segment). She frequently lectures on reef topics including marine animal disease, fish husbandry, human-tank zoonosis, and fish cognition. Contact Christine at christine@reefthreads.com.
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