Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Declawing Crabs May Lead To Their Death

Date:
October 10, 2007
Source:
Queen's University, Belfast
Summary:
The future sustainability of fishermen who declaw edible sea crabs has been questioned. Marine scientists studied crabs' reaction to declawing. Crabs felt increased stress and had a lower survival rate after the removal of one claw.

Professor Bob Elwood with a crab at a Singapore restaurant.
Credit: Image courtesy of Queen's University, Belfast

The future sustainability of fishermen who declaw edible sea crabs has been questioned by a Queen’s academic.

Professor Bob Elwood, from the School of Biological Sciences studied crabs’ reaction to declawing. Crabs felt increased stress and had a lower survival rate after the removal of one claw.

He said: “Should a crab survive declawing it will not be able to feed effectively and may subsequently die of starvation.”

Under current UK laws, fishermen can legally remove both claws and then put the animal back into the sea. According to Professor Elwood, this can result in stress and a high mortality rate for crabs.

Professor Elwood said: “We found a strong stress response within ten minutes of taking off one claw and this stress remained after 24 hours. The stress response was greater if the crab was declawed rather than being induced to cast off a claw. So, the stress is not due specifically to claw loss but to the manner of the claw loss.

“In the past, declawing has been defended because it has been likened to claws being naturally cast off, but this study shows clearly the two are very different.

“Of particular concern was that claw removal resulted in a substantial mortality within 24 hours that appeared to occur when the wound size was large. The typical fishery practice of removing two claws is likely to result in a much higher mortality than that observed in these experiments and so will have marked implications for the sustainability of crab claw fisheries.”

Looking at the declawing process around the world he concluded: “A fishery in the USA only allows removal of one claw. This is difficult to regulate because it cannot easily be determined if two claws are from the same crab or different crabs. In most other places the whole crab is used for food not just the claws.”

“In our experiments we were aware of ethical concerns about repeating the practice of claw removal in a scientific investigation. We believe though that the small number of animals is justified as it gives important data that might save very large numbers of crabs from this experience.”


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Queen's University, Belfast. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Queen's University, Belfast. "Declawing Crabs May Lead To Their Death." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 October 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071007210836.htm>.
Queen's University, Belfast. (2007, October 10). Declawing Crabs May Lead To Their Death. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071007210836.htm
Queen's University, Belfast. "Declawing Crabs May Lead To Their Death." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071007210836.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge from Nest

Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge from Nest

AP (July 27, 2014) A live-streaming webcam catches loggerhead sea turtle hatchlings emerging from a nest in the Florida Keys. (July 27) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A national study conducted by the USDA Forest Service found that trees collectively save more than 850 lives on an annual basis. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
What's To Blame For Worst Ebola Outbreak In History?

What's To Blame For Worst Ebola Outbreak In History?

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A U.S. doctor has tested positive for the deadly Ebola virus, as the worst-ever outbreak continues to grow. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The New York Times Backs Pot Legalization

The New York Times Backs Pot Legalization

Newsy (July 27, 2014) The New York Times has officially endorsed the legalization of marijuana, but why now, and to what end? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins