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  1. #1
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    Default A beautiful natural Red Abalone Pearl from the coast of California

    I found this abalone shell 20 years ago in a burlap bag full of abalone shells.My father harvested the abalone off the Mendocino County coast of California near Fort Bragg.The shell had 5 blister pearls attached to it,and I cut the largest one from the shell and left the others attached to the shell.I am trying to find an interested party to purchase this item.






  2. #2
    Second-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member
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    I prefer Californian red abalone blister pearls like these with the iridescent pink and green colours. I persuaded the vendor to sell me a 10-inch red rimmed abalone shell as well. I got these from a retired couple who live along the Californian coast.

    Michael, if you have similar ones like these, please do show.

    If anyone else on PG has a red abalone blister pearl or shell collection to share, I'd be interested to see and hear the stories.

    There are claims the red abalone is close to extinction, does anyone else know if that is so?
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  3. #3
    Natural Pearl Expert Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Lagoon Island Pearls's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adeline Leigh View Post
    There are claims the red abalone is close to extinction, does anyone else know if that is so?
    There is both empirical and theoretical evidence to suggest that abalone are susceptible to recruitment failure at reduced densities. A study investigating the impact of sea otters on H. rufescens (red abalone) in California reported that the effects of predators on abalone abundance were greater than the effects of recreational harvesting. Nevertheless, sea otter numbers are increasing as a result of strong conservation efforts. Where abalone and sea otters coexist, sea otters are thought to consume abalone in significant numbers. Likewise, abalone growth may be restricted by the presence of sea urchins when food supplies (macrofauna) are limited.

    Cultured reintroduction has done little to revitalize the biomass, while in fact, might be detrimental, partly as result of Withering Syndrome, raising concerns that other species of abalone may also be in danger from contagious pathogens. Laboratory studies of the bacterium responsible for Withering Syndrome, Candidatus xenohaliotis californiensis, indicate that it is capable of infecting other species of abalone. Hatchery rearing of abalone is exceedingly costly and labour intensive. Juvenile abalone need housing, as opposed to stringing or netting in other species such as pearl oysters. They require manual feeding at regular intervals and with large food consumption comes volumes of feces, which must be cleaned and/or disposed of effectively.

    Poaching of abalone is a lucrative enterprise and is likely placing continued stress on the remaining abalone populations. Furthermore, recreational divers and First Nations harvesters may also be responsible for a significant amount of illegal abalone collection. The combination of this high black-market value and the enforcement problems resulting from a large and uninhabited coastline suggest a major threat to abalone recovery.

    While some areas of abalone distribution are doing alright, sadly the overall prognosis for abalone is not good despite our best efforts. These beautiful highly nacreous animals with profound engineering for shell strength and mobility face a perilous future and many of us may well witness their near extinction within our lifetimes.
    Dave
    http://www.lagoonislandpearls.ca/

  4. #4
    Second-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member
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    Thanks, Dave. All I can say is, lucky buggers those otters.

  5. #5
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    Being a native of the Mendocino coast of California seeing red abalone shell was very common.Many people attach these shells on fence posts around their property.A 10 inch abalone is a very large one,not many like that these days.The pearls I have are certainly uncommon,especially the size and shape.Yours is beautiful indeed,and the color fabulous.All my abalone shell I have is at my home in the Philippines,and I especially look for the pieces of shell that the abalone foot is attached to in the middle of the shell.These pieces I find on the beach,A secret place,and I don't harvest any of the abalone.Over the years the abalone has suffered a sharp decline,and i do not want to contribute to this.The red abalone is by far the most beautiful shell in the world in my opinion,and to be able to find pieces and the occasional whole shells of this beautiful shellfish is a pleasure indeed.I hope to travel to this beach before May when I will return home to the Philippines,I always hope to find some more pearls,but they are rare.I have some beautiful pieces that I hope to market when I return.Regards,Michael

  6. #6
    Second-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member
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    That's exactly what the retired couple in California tell me. They have their own stash of abalone shells and blisters but supplement it with buys from garage sales and the like. Can't wait to see your other pearling finds whether it may be from Philippines or elsewhere.

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