This just in. The finding of these crabs in Dungeness changes everything. This is a very real threat to our marine life as well as our sewer system outfalls, among other things. Those of us in the Marine Resources Committees and the county people, have known that green crabs were found randomly in isolated numbers west along the Canadian coast, and there have been limited findings of them at a few places around the north Sound. With this discovery though it means there is no turning back and stopping them is going to be very problematic, if it’s even possible. One crab can eat up to 45 clams a day and they reproduce worse than bunny rabbits or rats.
According to the USDA:
Impact: Preys on bivalves and other crustaceans, such as soft-shell clams and scallops (Grosholz and Ruiz 2002)
Heads up that 12 European green crab have been caught so far since last week at the Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge. We have been working with USFWS and WA Sea Grant to support a limited rapid response and planning on setting up a stakeholder meeting in the next couple weeks to discuss implications and options. We’ve been in contact with Kelly Toy of Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe.
Here is a fun short video about them.