Pearl Encyclopedia - SelecTraders

Abalone Pearls

Abalone Pearls
Copyright Eyris Blue Pearl Company


Abalone pearls, produced by the gastropod mollusc Haliotis, are not only some of the rarest pearls in the world, but also considered by many to be some of the most beautiful pearls in the world.

The inner mother-of-pearl shell of the abalone has intense lustre and appears in a variety of blues, lavender, orange, green, pink, silver, and nearly every conceivable combination. The beauty of the abalone pearl is reflection of this colour potpourri in its typical irregular shape.

Abalone pearls are rarely (but occasionally) symmetrical. A common shape is the 'horn' shape. The anatomy of the Abalone is guiding the shape. A large, brilliant symmetrical pearl is a nearly 1 in 100,000 occurrence. Although Abalone pearls are desired and sought after, culturing these gems has been a very difficult venture.

Abalone are haemophiliacs, and if they are nucleated in a fashion similar to a mollusc, they will bleed to death quite quickly. Because of this only abalone mabe pearls have been successfully harvested. The culturing process is distinctly similar to that of other pearl producing molluscs, except that much more care must be exercised so that the abalone sustains no internal damage.

Pearls Abalone
Copyright Eyris Blue Pearl Company


Abalone pearl jewellery has yet to find admirers in Europe or the United States. The pearl is very popular in New Zealand and Australia, due to farming and marketing by the Eyris Blue Pearl Company in New Zealand. As the industry grows we can expect the beauty of these gems to soon grace the consumers of the West.