Freshwater pearls are different from saltwater pearls in many ways. While Tahitian, South Sea pearls, and Akoya are found in saltwater oysters, freshwater pearls are cultured in freshwater mollusks like Triangle Shell.
How are Freshwater Pearls Cultured?
A nucleus is inserted into the gonad of oyster. Then a small mantle tissue is infused alongside this nucleus. This mantle tissue cultures the pearl follicle, which deposits the nacre around nucleus leading to production of pearl.
On the other hand, freshwater pearls are cultured only with the piece of mantle tissue from other benefactor freshwater mollusk. This tissue piece is inserted inside mantle on any of the bivalve’s sides.
Value of Freshwater Pearls
When a freshwater pearl is cultured, the mantle tissue used for nucleating the pearl either drills out or gets dissolved and you are left only with a solid pearl, which doesn’t contain nucleus in the finished product.
- Ease of Harvesting Process – An Akoya oyster holds up to four nucleations, though more than two is hardly heard of. On the other hand, freshwater pearls harvest about 35-50 pearls per mollusk.
The culturing time of freshwater pearls is around 2-4 years. Even with mortality rate of 25%, the harvest is almost good always. Moreover, these pearls don’t have to deal with natural disasters and weather issues the way saltwater farms have to deal with.
- Less Appealing than Saltwater Pearls – This is another reason why freshwater pearls have less value than their saltwater counterparts. The shape of these pearls is rarely round and therefore these are used mainly in designing jewellery, which places more value on piece’s design in contrast to its cost.
In spite of all these things, freshwater pearls are good and genuine pearls and hold good market value. Moreover, these are more affordable than saltwater pearls. If you are also planning to buy a freshwater pearl you can visit pearlsonly.com.au.