Creature Feature. Camouflaging Octopus . Produce elaborate color patterns and highly complex skin textures Color changes are carried out by small, elastic, pigment-filled sacs, known as chromatophores Each cm 2 of skin may contain hundreds of chromatophores, in up to five colors.
Pronounced "gooey-duck" is of Native American origin and means "dig deep"
Shell ranges from 6-8 in. in length
Long siphons can reach 3.5 ft.
Weighs 1-3 lbs
Feeds on plankton
Largest burrowing clam in the world
Found along the Northwest coast of the US and Canada (Washington & British Columbia) on sandy/muddy beaches
Life expectancy of 146 years (one of the longest living animals)
Generally need to excavate a hole up to three feet deep to unearth a geoduck
As soon as it is disturbed, the geoduck will retract its siphon downward
Be careful not to slice the siphon
Must then dig with hangs and gently wiggle the shell free; don't pull on the siphon since it will break
FUN FACT: The Evergreen State College in Olympia adopted the geoduck as its official mascot, along with the motto Omnia Extares ("Let it all hang out")
Geoducks may only be taken with hand-operated instruments
It is unlawful to thrust any instrument through the neck of the animal
Fine of $75 per unfilled hole
May only be harvested during designated shellfish harvesting months (May-September)