back to article Alien crustaceans clash claws in UK waterways

Scientists believe the UK ranges of two aggressive alien crustaceans - the North American signal crayfish and the Chinese mitten crab - are beginning to overlap, offering the prospect of an epic battle for supremacy over Britain's waterways. The North American signal crayfish (Pacifastacus leniusculus) is one of several …


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  1. NickS

    Pass the Garlic Mayo please . . .

    Well I can't comment about the Chinese mitten crab but fresh water cray fish are dead tasty - if a bit fiddly to eat :) Think mini lobster bites.

    Getting my fishing coat . . .

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I for one welcome our not so giant enemy crab overlords.

  3. Matthew

    I for one...

    welcome our Sino-American Arachno-Crustacean overlords!

  4. Charlie Clark Silver badge
    Thumb Up


    Title says it all.

  5. This post has been deleted by its author

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Bootnote


    I thought that this has already been described by one of UK poets:

    "Come friendly bombs and fall on ..."

    And so on. You know the rest

  7. Master Baker
    Paris Hilton

    I want to see this

    Tube spiders taking to the waterways in tiny speedboats to take-on the watery bastards. They may have claws and armour plating, but the spidi's have little green fangs and a scary posture. The Black Widows could form the Arachnid SEAL battle group - swimming the waterways in tiny divers suits to plant webs on the burrow enterances. These webs would then ensnare the watery fiends so they couldn't move, then the Black Widows would bite them and laugh! Ho ho! Look at you! You crusty twat.

    On land the crabs would be out-manouvered by the little spiders. Sideways? Ha! Pathetic! 'Av some fangs you armoured flap jack.

    Meanwhile, in the native crayfish labs they have been working on a cure for the plague for some time. But then, in a case of mistaken identity a radioactive Black Widow bites a plague invested native crayfish.... The result? He dies. But then a week later another plague-infested native crayfish is bitten by a radioactive Black Widow and he transforms into a super-native crayfish. Part spider, part crayfish he becomes the ultimate weapon in the fight against the evil crayfish overlords. The glowing spider venom mixes with the plague virus and turns into a lethal crayfish STD. The super-native crayfish (called SpiderFish) now dedicates his life to pimping his ass to evil overlord crayfush - thus killing them with an STD which ironically they.... wait for it.... created themselves! Muh ha ha.

    Ah well, back to work. "Have you tried turning it on and off again...."

    Paris, 'cause I'll bet she hates crabs too.

  8. Neil Barnes Silver badge

    Well I for one...

    welcome our new mitten-wearing and chinese speaking overlords!

  9. David Evans

    We need proper science here

    Put them in a tank together, see who wins. Possibly place bets. Sound science policy for a better Britain.

    /Mine's the one with the Ladbrokes slip in the pocket...

  10. TeeCee Gold badge

    Philine zu Ermgassen?

    With a name like that she's obviously one of the Culture's Contact operatives placed here under cover to monitor us. The GCU "The hours are good, but the decades can be tedious." is in orbit as support.

  11. Ash
    Thumb Up

    Which one tastes the best?

    I'll root for the one that tastes best in my stir fry.

  12. P. J. Isserlis

    Serious news

    This is actually one of the more serious pieces of news for the long term than most things on this site.

    It seems that in the last couple of centuries, despite experience in UK (e.g. red squirrel), Australia, New Zealand and others our happy importers and traders have learnt nothing about the dangers of their activities. And even today, no doubt happy pet suppliers and garden centres are cheerfully and profitably flogging exotic species regardless and ignorant of the risks.

  13. Julian Bond
    Black Helicopters

    Good eating?

    The real question here may be which is the better eating? There are so many crayfish in the river Lee (or Lea) near Hertford that you can fish them out with a bit of bacon tied to a piece of string. But I can't quite bring myself to eat them given the colour of the water.

    That is a crayfish in the sign and not a black helicopter, right?

  14. Jacqui

    id cards

    This is *the* party-line^Wsolution to any illegals. Force them all to have ID cards!

    Of course, we could stick signs on the riverbank saying "free crabs and crayfish - catch and eat as many as you like" in romanian, so saving our swans from predation :-)

    FYI: My hubs basingstoke canal fishing permit/book provides some rather nice crayfish recipe's.

  15. Luther Blissett

    @Master Baker

    You forgot the frikkin' lasers, but you might like to think about this - were the Australians only slightly less intelligent than they are, their rabbits would have wiped them all out years ago. Contesting the Ashes would then have become a bit more interesting.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    oh my!

    Alien lobsters versus oriental crabs in our rivers?

    Tell me this isn't the very definition of Saturday night family entertainment?

    It'd be like Robowars in chitinaceous exoskeletons with the added attraction that it'd appeal to a fast food promotional tie-in; 'You've seen the show! Now eat the stars coated in delicious crispy batter!'

  17. Ed Blackshaw


    Best watch out for those knife missiles then

  18. A

    Why aren't we processing the ballast water?

    I know there's a lot of ballast water, and I'm sure not all of it is discharged at the dock; but shouldn't we have a system in place for processing the ballast water to make it safe to discharge?

    I'm sure it's a naive idea, but...

  19. Andy Enderby

    It's an ill wind....

    it turns out that the mitten crab was a hugely favoured luxury food in Shaghai until it was all but fished out. It transpires that the little buggers taste good, and this may prove their ticket to a trip back to China. Even a small locally grown crab can set a diner back hundreds of Yuan in Shanghai...... There is a British university assessing them for food safety and economic viability already. Pass the chopsticks, it's dinner time.......

  20. Toastan Buttar

    There's only one way to find out...

    Fight !

    Mine's the one with the big lapels.

  21. Big Pete

    @Luther Blissett

    Them rabbits are mighty tasty with a nice red wine sauce.

  22. Anonymous Coward

    now you know why my post

    About the damned blackbirds and starlings taken to north america and being pests there; like the zebra mussels and the gobis. Yes, the ships are supposed to wash their tanks with the proper "agents" to kill off crap like that, but they don't.

    Crawdads are a major edible...just check any menu in new orleans.....tasty as shrimp...think of them as tiny lobster and eat up.

    I guess the native americans are laughing it up about the plague after having smallpox brought to north and south america and helping wipe out the indiginous populations.

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