An adult fan mussel can measure up to 1m20. It looks like a giant mussel partly emerging from the sediment. The anterior part of younger individuals is covered in spiny scales that progressively disappear in adults. Like other bivalves, the fan mussel is a filter feeder that filters seawater through its gills to extract phytoplankton, but it also draws nourishment from organic deposits in the sediment. In France, it has been a protected species since 1992. It is found on loose substrates, phanerogam beds, rough sand and gravel from the surface to 60m deep. It is endemic to the Mediterranean.
Scientific name: Pinna nobilis
French: Grande nacre