WEST BATH (WGME) – A small crab that can cause big problems has been found in Maine for the first time.
Marine researchers discovered the smooth mud crab in the New Meadows River last week.
They were performing routine checks on oyster bags when they saw the crab in one of the bags.
Smooth mud crabs prey on shellfish and are normally seen from Florida to Cape Cod.
Experts said that since only one has been seen so far, any environmental concerns are premature.
“Whether or not it is some freak occurrence that it somehow managed to get here or if it is in fact a sign of a range expansion of the species, it’s a little early to say.” said Dr. Marissa McMahan, director of the Maine Fisheries Division for Manomet, a science-based nonprofit in Brunswick.
Researchers planned to present the crab Thursday to students at Georgetown Central School, where he will find a new home in their aquarium.