Variable shell shape, sculpted with radial ribs and commarginal frills. Normally 80-200 mm in length, up to 450 mm. Shell is grey to purple on outside, white on inside, generally with a light-colored adductor muscle scar. Two solid valves; left valve is slightly convex, right valve is deep and cup-shaped (Coan et al., 2000: 217; Nehring, 2006: 2). Differs from Crassostrea virginica in that C. gigas never has a purple or black muscle scar. Differs from Ostrea lurida in that the inside shell of O. lurida is iridescent green. The shell of C. gigas is much larger and heavier than that of O. lurida (Pauley et al., 1988: 1,4).
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