Ensis arcuatus

(Jeffreys, 1865)

Description (shell):
Shell thin and brittle, elongate; dorsal margin almost straight, ventral margin distinctly curved, shell deepest at midline. Anterior and posterior margins obliquely truncate. Sculpture of fine lines following the growth stages. Left valve with two, projecting, peg-like cardinal teeth and two, elongate, posterior laterals, one above the other; right valve with one cardinal and a single, elongate, posterior lateral. Adductor scars and pallial line distinct. Anterior adductor elongate, dorsal, extending to behind ligament, posterior small, round, separated from pallial sinus (E. arcuatus-drawing).

Up to 150 mm long.

White or cream, with reddish or purplish brown streaks and blotches; periostracum glossy, light olive or yellow-brown, darker grey-green along posterior dorsal region. Inner surfaces white, tinted with pink or pale purple.

Burrowing in sand and gravel, from the lower shore into the shallow sublittoral.

Distributed from Norway to Spain (Distr. E. arcuatus).