The feeding biology of Bathypecten vulcani, a peri-hydrothermal vent pectinacean, was investigated using histological and scanning electron microscope studies of the gills and stomach contents of specimens sampled from the 9° and 13°N sites of the East Pacific Rise. Salient characteristics were compared with those of Bathymodiolus thermophilus from the same and similar habitats. The gills of Bathypecten vulcani displayed heterogeneous organic and mineral particles on their frontal surface. The digestive tract possessed well-developed structures (whose anatomical and cytological characteristics indicated full functionality), typically found in bivalves from littoral aerobic environments, as well as in Bathymodiolus thermophilus, which is capable of suspension-feeding: oesophagus, stomach, crystalline style, digestive gland, and intestine. Observations of stomach contents revealed diverse particles from the photic zone, including debris from diatoms and coccolithophorans. In contrast to Bathymodiolus thermophilus, bacteria were rarely observed in the digestive tract, indicating a more complete reliance on surface-originating particles.