🦀 Blue Crabs & The Ecology of the Chesapeake Bay

To survive, the Chesapeake Bay, its rivers and creeks, must endure an array of assaults from air, water and land. The watershed’s worst problem is caused by the overabundance of the nutrients, nitrogen and phosphorus (fertilizer). Other problems are related to toxic chemicals, air pollution and landscape changes, along with sedimentation and the over-harvesting of …

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🦀 Popular Crabbing Locations Around Chesapeake Bay

Where will you go to catch crabs? It is easier to ask where you cannot go. There are literally hundreds of places to crab in the Chesapeake Bay. Where you go is entirely up to you. You are only limited by your imagination and how far you are willing to travel as to where you …

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🦀 Blue Crab Diet Information and Predator-Prey Relationships

Blue crab zoea are filter feeders that consume both phytoplankton and zooplankton. Megalopae have well developed chelae which are used to capture food in a manner similar to that of adults. Megalopae feed on other planktonic organisms while inhabiting the water column but become opportunistic benthic omnivores after settling to the bottom. The juvenile and …

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🦀 Blue Crab Habitat, Distribution and Migration

The original range of the blue crab is from Nova Scotia and throughout the Gulf of Mexico to northern Argentina, including Bermuda and the Antilles. The blue crab is seldom found north of Cape Cod, but has been recorded in Maine and Nova Scotia following consecutive warm years. The blue crab has been introduced, probably …

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🦀 The Blue Crab Molting Process

When blue crabs grow, their outer shell–the exoskeleton–doesn’t grow with them, so crabs must regularly shed these shells in order to increase in size. This process is known as molting. A crab that is ready to molt is commonly called a peeler. When ready to molt, the crab “cracks” its shell open from the back …

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🦀 Comprehensive Blue Crab Fact Sheet

Is a blue crab really blue? Well actually, all adult blue crabs are dark green on top and white underneath. So what’s the story with the blue? Blue crabs are called blue because of the striking deep blue coloring that the male crabs have on the top of their largest claw. Females don’t have this …

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🦀 The Blue Crab Life Cycle

Blue crabs start their lives as tiny zoea, floating in the ocean waters. While growing into the megalopa stage, the crabs drift back into the Chesapeake Bay, where they grow into juvenile crabs and, eventually, adults. The blue crab’s life cycle is also closely related to its migration patterns. Let’s take a closer look at …

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🦀 Harmful Algae Blooms Effects on Blue Crabs

Some algae are good for blue crabs but others are not. Algae are photosynthetic organisms that occur in most habitats, ranging from marine and freshwater to desert sands and from hot boiling springs to snow and ice. Algae vary from small, single-celled forms to complex multi-cellular forms, such as the giant kelps of the eastern …

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🦀 How to Raise & Farm Crabs

You might also want to try your luck at raising soft crabs. You will need to build a shedding tank. Take a 3 x 5 foot piece of plywood, or larger, and make sides high enough so crabs cannot climb out. Seal all the cracks and joints so it will hold water and let it …

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🦀 How to Identify Male vs Female Blue Crabs

Identifying the gender of blue crabs is actually remarkably simple. Below are some very simple pictures that show you exactly how to tell the difference between male and female blue crabs just by looking at their apron. Identifying Female Blue Crabs The bottom of a female blue crab. The underside of a crab is called …

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