The formation process of pearls: How are pearls formed?
Pearls are a natural miracle, and their formation process is full of mystery and beauty. The formation of pearls mainly depends on the physiological response of shellfish and external stimulation. The following will explain the formation process of pearls in detail according to three key steps: the formation of the core, the deposition of layers and the final shaping.
1. Formation of Nucleus:
The formation of pearls begins with a tiny foreign object inside the shell, such as a grain of sand or a parasite. After this foreign object is sensed by the shellfish, it will trigger a series of physiological reactions. The shellfish begins to secrete a substance called nacre, a biomineral composed of calcium carbonate, which will coat foreign objects and form the core of the pearl.
2. Layer-by-layer deposition:
Over time, the shellfish continues to secrete nacre and deposits it on the surface of the core, gradually forming the hierarchical structure of the pearl. This process is similar to the growth rings of a tree, with each layer representing a period of growth for the shellfish. Therefore, the more layers a pearl has, the higher its value and beauty.
3. Final shape:
The growth process of pearls takes a certain amount of time, usually lasting several years or even longer. When the pearl reaches the ideal size and shape, the shellfish stops secreting nacre, and the pearl completes its final shaping process.