Lampshells are found at depths ranging from the intertidal zone (between high and low tide levels in coastal areas) to the deep sea as far as 17,410 ft (5,300 m). Most articulate lampshells live in moderately deep water as low as 1,500 ft (450 m) in polar waters and cryptic (hidden) environments. They are classified as epifaunal; that is, they live on the sea floor or attached to other animals or objects underwater. Most species live on rocks or other solid substrates, but some dig vertical burrows in sandy or muddy bottoms.

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