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Carcinus maenas
Image courtesy of Melissa Frey, Royal BC Museum
Carcinus maenas
Taxonomic Group: Crustaceans-Crabs
Common name: GREEN CRAB


Carcinus maenas, commonly known as the green crab, has been listed as one of the ‘100 worst invasive species’. It is native to European coasts from Iceland and Norway to Mauritania, West Africa. It has invaded six major regions, the Northwest Atlantic (from Maryland-Newfoundland), the Southwest Atlantic (Patagonia), the Southeast Atlantic (South Africa), the Northeast Pacific (from California-British Columbia), the Northwest Pacific (Japan), and the Southwest Pacific (Australia). Carcinus maenas is most abundant in sheltered intertidal and shallow subtidal habitats. It has had major economic impacts on shellfisheries in New England, and may have similar effects on fisheries on the West Coast of North America and Australia. Ecologically, C. maenas has impacted shore communities by preying on, and competing with, other crabs, bivalves and gastropods.

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Fofonoff PW, Ruiz GM, Steves B, Simkanin C, & Carlton JT (2018)
National Exotic Marine and Estuarine Species Information System.
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Marine Invasions Lab
Smithsonian Environmental Research Center

P.O. Box 28
647 Contees Wharf Road
Edgewater, MD 21037-0028 Tel: 443 482 2200
Fax: 443 482 2380

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