Foreign species poses threat to native crab in Hudson River

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HUDSON VALLEY -

A foreign species of crab could be invading the Hudson River and posing a danger to its co-inhabitants, experts say.

According to the Department of Environmental Conservation, a juvenile Chinese mitten crab was first found in 2007 and more recently in Yonkers in May of 2018.

Bob Walters, the director of Groundwork Hudson Valley Science Barge, says researchers are not exactly sure how the species arrived to the waters of the Hudson River.

Walters says the species could be a major problem for the river, because it creates competition for the native blue crab, a species that is of ecological, recreational and commercial importance to the region.

The Chinese mitten crab has eight sharp legs, a shell up to 4 inches wide and is very aggressive. Walters says the crab could be a major problem for the Hudson River and threaten the existence of the blue crab.

Anyone who catches the Chinese mitten crab is asked to freeze it, note the date and location of where it was caught, take a photo and report it to the DEC at 914-428-2505.

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