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Old 14-01-2013, 11:40
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Default Does Trapping Invasive Crayfish Help?

The Buglife website sets out to explain why it may not actually be the best solution to try and trap invasive crayfish species like the American Signal Crayfish.

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Old 14-01-2013, 11:59
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Default Re: Does Trapping Invasive Crayfish Help?

They have been trapping turkish blacks and signales on my club lake since 1990 and as we have no native crayfish in our lake it makes no difference what so ever to the white claw if we did not trap and our traps are licenced individually every year you would not be able to but bait of any discription in the water though the summer months as for crays eating their own I think the fish in the lake eat far more of the young than the crays do. It has been noticeable for some years on our water that when the youn are plentyful in mid summer the fish especially the carp become very hard to catch for a period of a few weeks members have pulled out weed at this time and it canbe thick with tiny crays, I have used these on the hook to catch perch up in the water yes I know you must not use them as bait but I have on the odd occasion before the legislation was made clear a few years ago. So over twenty years of having these critters in our lake I would say if there are no native crays in residence you do not have a lot of option if you want to catch a few fish instead of crayfish.
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Old 14-01-2013, 12:19
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Default Re: Does Trapping Invasive Crayfish Help?

Who runs the Buglife website? Sounds almost like a cry to leave them alone...

"1. You can’t remove all Signal crayfish in an area by trapping, this is because trapping does not catch the young crayfish as they are too small for the traps. In fact in some cases trapping large crayfish can actually help to boost the future population – this is because large crayfish eat a lot of the smaller ones, and so removing large crayfish lets more young crayfish survive. 2. Identifying different crayfish is difficult if you are not an expert. A man who was described as an environmentalist was recently charged and heavily fined for having caught and eaten over 50 White-claws in the Lake District, due to mis-identification (DailyTelegraph, 2010). Such a mistake could harm White-claws in an area, because they don’t produce as many young as introduced crayfish, they grow more slowly and they can easily be disturbed and their habitat can be damaged by people hunting for them.
3. Trapping increases the risk of spreading crayfish plague and invasive species to unaffected waterbodies. Equipment such as traps, waterproof clothing, nets, and boats can harbour young crayfish. They can be incredibly hard to spot, as when they are in juvenile stage they can be smaller than a 5p piece. Without regular checking, cleaning and drying of equipment, these animals can escape and spread without detection."



1, This is true to some extent, but most anglers trap to try and contain the numbers of crayfish. It is true that if you remove a big adult, it will allow more of the smaller young to grow up. However, some of the traps recommended do allow the smaller young to get out whereas (with better mesh traps) they should all be caught and killed and left on dry land to wither to kill any eggs they may also be carrying.
2, I think by now most anglers (and every trapper should) know the difference between a signal crayfish and a white-claw, but there may be some problems with the newer introductions of Turkish, red swamp, and virile crayfish. If in doubt leave it, although the size of the Turkish ones are like lobsters, I believe.
3, For all anglers now there is a policy of clean and dry all equipment after every use. Only the downright idle and stupid won't. This not only kills any crayfish transfer and associated disease, but also other water born diseases that affect our fish stocks.


Saying that, chub don't half get big on a diet of crays, mostly the small ones so if we have a problem, let's look into why our fish stocks are struggling in some areas. Perhaps the older crays are eating the eggs. A vicious circle.....
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Last edited by Jeff Woodhouse; 14-01-2013 at 12:23.
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Old 14-01-2013, 12:41
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Default Re: Does Trapping Invasive Crayfish Help?

Speaking to a licenced trapper on the Kennet, he was of a view that the numbers have expanded since he started trapping on the stretch in question, to the degree it's not worth his while, as he doesn't get the price he needs.
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Old 14-01-2013, 13:31
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Default Re: Does Trapping Invasive Crayfish Help?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Woodhouse View Post
Who runs the Buglife website? Sounds almost like a cry to leave them alone...

"1. You can’t remove all Signal crayfish in an area by trapping, this is because trapping does not catch the young crayfish as they are too small for the traps. In fact in some cases trapping large crayfish can actually help to boost the future population – this is because large crayfish eat a lot of the smaller ones, and so removing large crayfish lets more young crayfish survive. 2. Identifying different crayfish is difficult if you are not an expert. A man who was described as an environmentalist was recently charged and heavily fined for having caught and eaten over 50 White-claws in the Lake District, due to mis-identification (DailyTelegraph, 2010). Such a mistake could harm White-claws in an area, because they don’t produce as many young as introduced crayfish, they grow more slowly and they can easily be disturbed and their habitat can be damaged by people hunting for them.
3. Trapping increases the risk of spreading crayfish plague and invasive species to unaffected waterbodies. Equipment such as traps, waterproof clothing, nets, and boats can harbour young crayfish. They can be incredibly hard to spot, as when they are in juvenile stage they can be smaller than a 5p piece. Without regular checking, cleaning and drying of equipment, these animals can escape and spread without detection."



1, This is true to some extent, but most anglers trap to try and contain the numbers of crayfish. It is true that if you remove a big adult, it will allow more of the smaller young to grow up. However, some of the traps recommended do allow the smaller young to get out whereas (with better mesh traps) they should all be caught and killed and left on dry land to wither to kill any eggs they may also be carrying.
2, I think by now most anglers (and every trapper should) know the difference between a signal crayfish and a white-claw, but there may be some problems with the newer introductions of Turkish, red swamp, and virile crayfish. If in doubt leave it, although the size of the Turkish ones are like lobsters, I believe.
3, For all anglers now there is a policy of clean and dry all equipment after every use. Only the downright idle and stupid won't. This not only kills any crayfish transfer and associated disease, but also other water born diseases that affect our fish stocks.


Saying that, chub don't half get big on a diet of crays, mostly the small ones so if we have a problem, let's look into why our fish stocks are struggling in some areas. Perhaps the older crays are eating the eggs. A vicious circle.....
It is a known fact that crays eat fish eggs and anything that they can get their claws on vegitable or meat there is nothing new about turkish blacks in our water they have been there since at least the mid 80s. and yes the fish do well eating the small and the big and the grebes are keen on them as well as the pike.
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