The Everglades Crayfish

The Everglades Crayfish, also known as Florida Crayfish or Blue Crayfish.
Procambarus alleni

This is an encouraging example of a specie which is currently well established in its natural habitat and listed as of least concern on the IUCN Red List. Endemic to the USA, the Everglades Crayfish’s native range encompasses the majority of central and southern Florida. The northern extent of its distribution extends along the St. Johns River from its mouth, south to northern Seminole County, westward to Bushnell in Sumter County, and then northwest through Citrus and southern Levy County to the mouth of the Suwannee River. The southern edge of the native range encompasses the Everglades and a few of the Florida Keys.

The Procambarus Alleni inhabit a wide range of short-lived and permanent wetlands, including prairie marshes, flood plains, road side ditches and small streams. Their habitat preference appears to be temporary, such as freshwater bodies of water that are still or very sluggish, or littoral zones that periodically desiccate due to seasonal droughts.

This crayfish has a rostrum with or without lateral spines, relatively narrow areola that is 7 to 14 times as long as it is wide, postorbital ridges terminating the cephalad with or without spines, and one lateral spine usually present on the sides of the carapace. Wild specimens can be blue, brown, or red in color. A mature male Procambarus Alleni can be recognized through the presence of hooks on the third and fourth pereiopods. Additionally, knobs used to hold females in place during mating can be seen at the base of the fifth pereiopod.

This is a widely available specie in the aquarium trade due to the brilliant blue color morphs that are bred in captivity.




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