Cape Eleuthera Institute Research Identifies Better Method for Stone Crab Claw Removal
The Cape Eleuthera Institute (CEI) in The Bahamas has used innovative research to identify a better way to remove the claws of the Bahamian stone crab and allows the crab to effectively grow its claw back. The research, funded by the Moore Bahamas Foundation and Double Eagle Fishing, has increased stone crab survival by 30 percent in the fishery.
This method involves sticking a sharp object into the soft joint midway down the claw which makes the crab drop its claw organically. Doing this avoids joint damage that often occurs when cracking or clipping claws, relies on biological self-defense systems within the crab, and allows the crab to effectively grow its claw back. In the words of local fisherman, “Don’t clip the biter, stick it!”
The research was made possible by the National Fisheries Association and participation from local stone crab fishers and members of the community, and it will actively conserve local stone crab populations and contribute to fishery productivity. Based in the Island School, CEI has fostered its pivotal research through the involvement of youth cohorts, active student involvement, and local commercial fisherman. From ages as young as three to doctoral candidates across The Bahamas, research into stone crab claw removal hinges on the successful integration of local communities into conversation practice.
The Moore Charitable Foundation and its Moore Bahamas Foundation affiliate are driven by tangible, innovative solutions that promote conservation. We are proud to support this ongoing research that contributes to the protection of Bahamian stone crab population.