Horse mussel Modiolus modiolus, from Kåre Telnes.

Belongs within: Mytilidae.

Modiolus is a genus of mussels generally regarded as dating from the Devonian to the present day, though some have suggested that the name should be restricted to Caenozoic forms (Hodges 2000). Modiolus species commonly bear a hairy external covering derived from the periostracum, the organic outer layer of the shell. The late Triassic to middle Jurassic (Rhaetian–Bajocian) subgenus Cyranus differs from the type genus in having a straighter, narrower shell that is more elongated posteriorly (Hodges 2000).

Characters (from Hodges 2000): Shell equivalve, elongated posteriorly; umbones placed just behind anterior end, never terminal; ligament long; ornament of commarginal striae or smooth; periostracum generally hirsute.

<==Modiolus Lamarck 1799 (see below for synonymy) H00
    |--M. (Modiolus) H00
    |    |--*M. (M.) modiolus (Linnaeus 1758) [=Mytilus modiolus] H00
    |    |--M. (M.) laevis Sowerby 1812 (n. d.) H00
    |    `--M. (M.) minimus (Sowerby 1818) (see below for synonymy) H00
    `--M. (Cyranus Hodges 2000) H00
         |--M. (*C.) hillanus (Sowerby 1818) (see below for synonymy) H00
         |--M. (C.) scalprum H00
         |--M. (C.) sowerbyanus H00
         `--M. (C.) ventricosus (Roemer 1836) (see below for synonymy) H00

Modiolus incertae sedis:
  M. adriaticus M62
  M. altijugatus M49
  ‘Mytilus’ arborescens Chemnitz 1795 [=Modiola arborescens] H09
  M. arcuatulus Hanley 1843 BD86
  M. areolatus Gould 1850 MG-H11
  M. auriculatus Krauss 1848 BD86 [=Modiola auriculata H09]
  ‘Modiola’ australis Gray 1827 H09
  M. confusus [=Perna confusa] F27
  ‘Modiola’ crassissima M’Coy 1847 F71
  M. difficilis KBC03
  ‘Modiola’ dunlopensis Etheridge 1902 F71
  M. flavida Dunker 1856 MG-H11
  M. fluviatilis (Hutton 1878) F27
  M. glaberrimus (Dunker 1856) BD86
  M. kurilensis PV06
  ‘Modiola’ lignea Reeve 1858 H09
  ‘Modiola’ mytiliformis Etheridge 1917 F71
  M. neozelanicus (Iredale 1915) P61
  ‘Modiola’ philippinarum Hanley 1844 H09
  M. proclivis Iredale 1939 MG-H11
  M. pulex M54 [incl. M. ater (Zelebor 1866) (preoc.) F27]
  ‘Modiola’ striatula G88

Modiolus Lamarck 1799 [incl. Eumodiolus Ihering 1900, Modiola Lamarck 1801, Nudiola Monterosato 1917, Volsella Scopoli 1777 (nom. rej.)] H00

Modiolus (*Cyranus) hillanus (Sowerby 1818) [=Modiola hillana, Mytilus (Modiolus) hillanus, Volsella hillana; incl. V. langportensis var. angustiformis Richardson & Tutcher 1914, V. langportensis var. erecta Richardson & Tutcher 1914, Modiola glabrata Dunker 1846, Mytilus glabratus, V. langportensis Richardson & Tutcher 1914, My. stoppanii Dumortier 1864, Modiola stoppanii] H00

Modiolus (Cyranus) ventricosus (Roemer 1836) [=Modiola ventricosa; incl. Modiola elongata Koch & Dunker 1837, Mytilus geuxii d’Orbigny 1849, Myt. hillanus Goldfuss 1837 non Modiola hillana Sowerby 1818, Myt. liasinus Terquem 1855, Volsella liasina, Myt. morrisi Oppel 1856, Modiola nitidula Dunker 1846, Myt. (Modiolus) nitidulus, Modiola numismalis Oppel 1854, Myt. (Modiolus) numismalis, Myt. productus Terquem 1855, Modiola psilonoti Quenstedt 1856, Myt. rusticus Terquem 1855, Modiola rustica, Myt. scalprum Goldfuss 1837, Myt. simoni Terquem 1855, Myoconcha spatula d’Orbigny 1849, Myt. thiollierei Dumortier 1869] H00

Modiolus (Modiolus) minimus (Sowerby 1818) [=Modiola minima, Mytilus minimus, Mitylus (l. c.) minimus, Volsella minima; incl. Modiola minimus Goldfuss 1837, V. wickesi Richardson & Tutcher 1914] H00

*Type species of generic name indicated


[BD86] Barash, A., & Z. Danin. 1986. Further additions to the knowledge of Indo-Pacific Mollusca in the Mediterranean Sea (Lessepsian migrants). Spixiana 9 (2): 117–141.

[F27] Finlay, H. J. 1927. A further commentary on New Zealand molluscan systematics. Transactions and Proceedings of the New Zealand Institute 57: 320–485.

[F71] Fletcher, H. O. 1971. Catalogue of type specimens of fossils in the Australian Museum, Sydney. Australian Museum Memoir 13: 1–167.

[G88] Gray, J. 1988. Evolution of the freshwater ecosystem: the fossil record. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 62: 1–214.

[H09] Hedley, C. 1909. The Marine Fauna of Queensland: Address by the President of Section D. Australasian Association for the Advancement of Science: Brisbane.

[H00] Hodges, P. 2000. The Early Jurassic Bivalvia from the Hettangian and Lower Sinemurian of south-west Britain. Part. 1. Monograph of the Paleontographical Society 614: 1–64.

[KBC03] Kashin, I. A., E. V. Bagaveeva & S. F. Chaplygina. 2003. Fouling communities of hydrotechnical constructions in Nakhodka Bay (Sea of Japan). Russian Journal of Marine Biology 29: 267–283.

[M54] Macpherson, J. H. 1954. Molluscs (sea shells and snails). In: Willis, J. M. (ed.) The Archipelago of the Recherche pp. 55–63. Australian Geographical Society: Melbourne.

[M49] Mason, B. 1949. The geology of Mandamus-Pahau district, north Canterbury. Transactions and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New Zealand 77 (3): 403–428.

[MG-H11] McEnnulty, F. R., K. L. Gowlett-Holmes, A. Williams, F. Althaus, J. Fromont, G. C. B. Poore, T. D. O’Hara, L. Marsh, P. Kott, S. Slack-Smith, P. Alderslade & M. V. Kitahara. 2011. The deepwater megabenthic invertebrates on the western continental margin of Australia (100–1100 m depths): composition, distribution and novelty. Records of the Western Australian Museum Supplement 80: 1–191.

[M62] Monniot, F. 1962. Recherches sur les graviers a Amphioxus de la région de Banyuls-sur-Mer. Vie et Milieu 13: 231–322.

[PV06] Pimenova, E. A., & A. A. Varaksin. 2006. Putative nitroxidergic cells in the digestive system of some mytilids (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Mytilidae) revealed by NADPH-diaphorase histochemistry. Malacologia 49 (1): 61–77.

[P61] Powell, A. W. B. 1961. Shells of New Zealand: An illustrated handbook 4th ed. Whitcombe and Tombs Limited: Christchurch.

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