Callinectes sapidus

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dessicated blue crab

Blue Crab - Callinectes sapidus

Habitat In shallow and brackish estuaries

Range Nova Scotia to Florida and west along the Gulf Coast to Texas;can be found off shore 36m. Also found in Bermuda and West Indies to Uruguay.

Description Spindle shaped body with a bluish green tint when moistened. Spines come off the front, which are red. Blue crabs have a white underside, which can sometimes have a pink or yellow tine. The males have blue tinted claws and the female claws are red.

Ecological Notes These crabs are very important commercially to humans. They cannot tolerate heat stress, so they burrow in the sand when low tide. Callinectes are carnivores.

Personal Information On the trip we ate blue crab at Dr. Posner's mom's house. We also found dried crabs in the salt marsh by Oregon Inlet fishing center. Live specimens of Callinectes sapidus were found washed up on the beach at the Oregon Inlet camping site we stayed at.

Journal Articles To learn about Callinectes sapidus, please see:

Eggleston, DB; Reyns, NB; Etherington, LL, et al.(2010) Tropical storm and environmental forcing on regional blue crab (Callinectes sapidus) settlement. FISHERIES OCEANOGRAPHY 19(2)89-106

This article looks at increasing storms, such as hurricanes and typhoons, caused by global warming and the relationship it has to larval recruitment.

Ma, HG; Townsend, H; Zhang, XS, et al. (2010)Using a fisheries ecosystem model with a water quality model to explore trophic and habitat impacts on a fisheries stock: A case study of the blue crab population in the Chesapeake Bay. ECOLOGICAL MODELLING 221(7)997-1004

This article is using modeling systems to analyze the aquatic vegetation, blue crabs, and water quality to access how the habitat is being affected from fisheries and if they are rebuilding properly.

References Amos, William and Amos, Stephen.1998. National Audubon Society Nature Guides: Atlantic & Gulf Coasts. Blue Crab pg. 418

Contributed by Wendy Dria - 2010

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