The organism’s family, Ostreidae, has been present since the Triassic. Currently the family contains 15 living genera and over 40 species (Mikkelsen and Bieler, 2007: 110).
Phylogenetic analysis for the genus Crassostrea is very difficult. This is partly because many of the phenotypic characteristics of the oysters are affected by the environment. However, through molecular analysis, Reece et al. (2008) suggest that Crassostrea sikamea (Kumomoto Oyster) is a very close relative of Crassostrea gigas. It was also suggested that Crassostrea angulata (Portuguese Oyster) and C. gigas might not actually be distinct species (Reece et al., 2008).
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