Dire Predictions Come True: Gargantuan King Crabs Invading, Ravaging Ocean Floor Surrounding Antarctica

by • September 8, 2011 • Nature, Random News, ScienceComments (0)4017

Three years ago, researchers warned that if the deep waters of the Southern Ocean continued to warm we would witness king crabs invading Antarctica within 100 years.  Well, wait no more.  New video has surfaced showing over a million gigantic king crabs (Neolithodes yaldwyni) measuring more than a metre across have moved into the Palmer Deep region and have already wiped out the local wildlife and now threaten to ruin ecosystems that have evolved over 14 million years.  They are literally destroying the ecosystem by their non-stop probing, gashing, and puncturing of highly sensitive sediments with their long pointy legs.  Craig Smith of the University of Hawaii at Manoa, whose team was first to discover the giant red crabs, noted, “This is likely to alter sediment processes, such as the rate at which organic matter is buried, which will affect the diversity of animal communities living in the sediments.” They are also ferocious eaters and are wiping out sea urchins, sea lilies, sea cucumbers, starfish and brittle star colonies. You can read the entire story at New Scientist.

Source: New Scientist

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