What to Look For
Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) are species that enter into new ecosystems and spread, causing damage to native species and their habitants. These species are spread beyond their normal distribution, often as a result of human activities, and can threaten valuable environmental, agricultural or personal resources by the damage they cause.
Carcinus maenas, is native to Europe and North Africa. It is considered on the 10 most unwanted species in the world. It was first found in eastern Canada in the 1950s in the Bay of Fundy and entered Nova Scotia waters of the Gulf of St. Lawrence in 1994.
● Up to 10 cm when fully-grown.
● Serrated, trapeze-shaped shell, with obvious spines on each side and between the eyes
● Green, red or yellow in colour
● Tips of its back legs are pointed, hairy and slightly flattened
● Aggressive, vigorous and can survive out of water for several days
● Changes balance between species in ecosystems
● Can destroy shellfish beds
● Destroys essential habitats such as eelgrass beds
● Threatens shellfish aquaculture
● Damages eel fishery by reducing catch