News & Events for Chesapeake Bay

Anne Arundel researchers expanding horseshoe crab survey

Date Posted: 2017-06-26
Source: Capital Gazette

At about 5 p.m. Saturday afternoon, Anne Arundel Community College professor Paul Bushmann spotted a male and female horseshoe crab mating at a beach in the Bay Ridge community of Annapolis.

The day before he and his research partner, biologist Paulette Levantine, surveyed the beach and two others early in the morning near high tide and came up empty-handed — but he did find a dead crab at the site, a sign of activity, which was confirmed Saturday. It is likely that the spawning season, which peaks in May and June, is slowing down, Bushmann said.

Horseshoe crabs are the oldest living fossils in the state, according to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. They've lived here approximately 360 million years.

Bushmann has been studying the crabs' spawning activity in Calvert County for 13 years.

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