So right before Thanksgiving I was looking at a post on prepping abalone. In the how to video the guy finds a pearl. I posted how it miffed me a little that the guy just happens to find one while filming while I have gotten all goobery with every ab I ever harvested for zilch.
Well the hunter gatherer gods must have heard my agonized prayers. I was showing my kids and nephews how to clean abs. I was just telling them, "they say you can find pearls sometimes but I've never found one." Then I felt something hard. I didn't get too excited because I have found pebbles before. But then, lo and behold, I find a pearl. And another, and another... Keep going and I find several dozen small pearls the size of a pinhead and four bigger than a pencil eraser. One as big as a Lima bean.
Most of the big pearls aren't fully covered in nacre, or mother of pearl. Unfortunately the nacre comes off when I attempt to remove the yellowy slimy coating.
Anyone have any advice on polishing up these pearls? Is it possible that there is a full nacre layer under some of the blackish stuff?
About the ab, it looks as though there may have been a pretty big boring clam in the shell where the pearls were clustered up. There's a hole on the outside that corresponds to the interior blister. It looks as though a boring clam may have gotten in but the shell almost completely healed over. Although there were four or five other big bumps with no sign of parasite from the outside which makes me think maybe an infection caused the shell deformities. Maybe a combo of both? Maybe the big blister caused nacre production to skyrocket leading to the other bumps?
Attached are a few pics. There are more small pearls, I just didn't get a group photo.