The South Sea, sounds exotic and the perfect place for an island getaway. If you do decide on such a course of action, it may also be the perfect place to look for the highly coveted golden South Sea Pearls. However, thankfully you won’t have to travel there if you really want some of these magnificent specimens.
South Sea Pearls are world renowned and as the name implies, they are a saltwater pearl. They emanate from the large oyster known as Pinctada maxima that lives in the warm waters of the South Seas that run from the north edge of Western Australia to the south edge of China. Not only is the temperature of these waters perfect for the cultivation of South Sea Pearls but so too is the combination of nutrients in the water.
Large oysters are capable of producing large pearls. And the Pinctada maxima of the South Seas grows to an enormous 12 inches in diameter. Consequently, they can be cultivated with a much larger bead than other saltwater oysters resulting in pearls ranging between 9-20mm, with an average size of 13mm – the largest cultured pearls on the market today.
The Colors of the South Sea
South Sea Pearls come in the following colors: white, silver, pink, gold, and cream. They can also come in a combination of these colors, exhibiting a range of colors indicative of the colors of the rainbow.
The Pinctada maxima oyster comes in two varieties – silver-lipped and gold-lipped, designated according to the outer edge of their interior. White, silver, and pink South Sea Pearls come from the silver-lipped variety, whilst gold and cream South Sea Pearls come from the gold-lipped variety.
The Queen of Cultured Pearls
As the largest and rarest of the cultured pearls, South Sea Pearls are also the most valuable. Also, since the Pinctada maxima oyster is much rarer and more sensitive than other types of mollusks, it is much harder to cultivate, adding to the rarity and value of South Sea Pearls.
South Sea Pearls make a statement whenever they are worn. They are big, bold, and beautiful. Not for the shrinking violet, they may come from the South Sea but are not only at home but usually the guest of honor wherever they are found in the world.