Every now and then the internet throws up a video that gets everyones’ attention. The latest of these is a bizarre video showing a digging clam as it burrows into the sand.
Filmed by The Weather Channel, 37-second clip has now had 15 million views in just four days.
It seems many people in the comments are shocked to see a clam digging like this, while others say it’s actually quite common.
The clam in the video is actually a razor clam and they’re capable of digging to a depth of two feet. For those who want to get geeky, apparently clams are able to do something called ‘fluidizing’ which allows them to turn hard sand into wet, almost quicksand.
The Washington Post asked Annette Hosoi, a professor of mechanical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a person who has researched the digging technique, to explain exactly how it works.
“It has a really interesting strategy for digging. First a clam relaxes its muscles, which causes the shell to open.Braced in the sand, the clam thrusts its fleshy foot downward. Then it squeezes water into the bottom of its foot, causing the appendage to balloon. So anchored, the clam contracts. The pocket of sand around the clam “fluidizes,” loosening up and reducing the drag on the clam, so the shell can slide down to the foot.”
Take a look for yourself.