Sea of Cortez pearl

From The Gemology Project
Revision as of 11:14, 26 April 2007 by Doos (talk | contribs) (Color)
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Chemical composition Calcium carbonate, conchiolin and water
Crystal system Amorphous
Hardness 2.5-3.5
Refractive index 1.52-1.69
Specific gravity 2.68-2.86
Lustre Pearly
Sea of Cortez pearls®
Photo Courtesy of Douglas McLaurin Moreno, Perlas del Mar de Cortez


The pteria sterna mollusk is also known as the "rainbow lipped pearl oyster" and produces pearls in many colors, ranging from white to black with any overtone (such as: blue, green, violet, purple, golden, bronze and brown).


The average size of the Sea of Cortez pearls is 8.2 to 9.8 mm, but they can get as large as 14.3 mm.


  • 2004: 2.8 kilograms
  • 2005: 2.5 kilograms
  • 2006: 2.8 kilograms

With an average weight of 1 gram, the yearly production is about 2,800 pearls.