Flame Scallop

The Flame Scallop or Rough Fileclam (Lima scabra), is found in the Caribbean Sea. Lima scabra are members of the Phylum Mollusca. Flame scallops are also bivalve mollusks. Although their name would suggest otherwise, flame scallops have no relation to scallops, besides their exterior.

Flame scallops have a rough outer shell with a red mantle. Surrounding the mantel are red and white tentacles. The flame scallop’s vibrant red color is due to the large amount of carotenoids found within their body. Lima scabra can get to be 3 inches long. The gills of the flame scallops are used for respiration and filtration.

Flame scallops rest in their own nests made of small coral and rocks. Because flame scallops have no photosynthetic properties, the omnivorous flame scallops eat only phytoplankton. During the consumption process, flame scallops sift and sort through the phytoplankton with their gills to determine what is appropriate for ingestion.

To escape predators or harm, the flame scallop’s valves are used. Flame scallops push their valves together to propel themselves away from dangerous situations. Their predators are crabs and shrimp.