Different habitats of marine mollusks in New Caledonia


On the littoral of New Caledonia we can find very complex ecosystems formed by the mangrove forests which are linked to river mouths and the existence of coastal lagoons.

Mangroves are very abundant on the west coast and the north of the "grande terre" ( Main island )


We can find three main types of beaches in New Caledonia :

sandy muddy beaches

white sandy beaches

grey/black sandy beaches


Can be divided into three different areas :

Supralittoral : the strip of beach above the high-tide level. Only submerged occasionally, it is the transitional environment between water and land, which the sea can only keep moist through spray from a combination of water and wind.

Mesolittoral : From the high-tide mark to the low-tide mark. Also known as the intertidal zone, the sea periodically submerges this area.

Infralittoral : From the low-tide mark to shallow depths. This area extends up to 5m deep. It develops a high abundance and richness since here we can find the marine pastures and coral reefs.


The sublittoral zone extends from below low to the edge of the continental shelf. This area can generally be found down to 100m. There is a great abundance of plants and animal life in that zone because the sunlight can reach the bottomin most areas and there is then a lot of nutrience.


Known also as the deep sea benthos. From 100m down to 1000m deep.


From 1000m to the deepest bottom in New Caledonia these areas have never been seriously prospected so far, but the little we know about tend to show that mollusks are really scarce at these depths.