The Crayfish Fanclub Newsletter - May 1997

The Crayfish Fan Club Newsletter.

Welcome to the Crayfish Fan Club Newsletter.
May 1997
I would like to take this opportunity to greet new members and to thank everyone for their contribution to the Crayfish Fanclub which you can send via email. Contribution ensures the continuation of the Crayfish Fan Club and the Crayfish Corner website. Please send your crayfish articles, pics, jokes, songs, stories and comments to me at the address below. The information below is exclusive to Crayfish Fan Club members but will be posted on the Crayfish Corner in a few weeks after you receive this.

Crayfish News

Hello to all our new members. The fanclub now has almost 30 members. Thanks to you all for your interest. The Crayfish Corner has had over 1500 visitors since Christmas last. Another crayfish joke was submitted. Check it out below and don't forget to send your own. It is now easier to enter the crayfish fanclub. A new form asking for name and email is available on the website, allowing one-click membership. See it all at: http://www.geocities.com/SouthBeach/7648/crayfish.htm

Crayfish Info


This month's article is from the Irish Times:

Odd Little Thing on the River Bed

A strange little creature inhabits the bottom of limestone lakes and 
rivers in this country [Ireland]: the freshwater crayfish. It grows up 
to four inches in length and looks, Eamon de Buitleár tells us in his 
*Ireland's Wild Countryside*, just like a tiny lobster. It hides under 
stones and is slow moving. This Eamon says, makes it easy prey for the 
mink and otter. An interesting point is that the female, instead of 
laying her eggs on the bed of the river or lake, carries them around 
attached to her body, where they eventually hatch. It has been said, 
with what authority is not clear, that the presence of these crayfish 
shows that the water is unpolluted, or relatively so. Anyway, on a river
in Meath, where there was a regular deposit of otter spraints (excrement,
on certain rocks, nearly always containing the remains of legs and other
bodily portions of crayfish), there has recently been a total lack of 
such evidence.
Is it that the otter has changed his nightly tracks? Is it that the 
crayfish, normally spending the day mostly under stones, are now breeding,
and thus more than ever in hiding? Or have they been wiped out either by
otter or mink depreciations, or by pollution? Certainly where, a few 
years ago, bits of meat lowered into the normally most populated stretch,
and securely tied to a string, well-weighed-down net, always gave results,
now nothing. Not even a bite-mark. More testing is needed, upriver or 
down, before any conclusions can be drawn. Eamon does mention a parasitic 
fungus as causing a decline in Midland lakes, but this is a swift-flowing
river.
The greatest show of these normally discreet creatures was seen by some 
friends fishing the White Lake, up in Westmeath. Coming in at dusk from 
the deeper water, gliding over the white marl bottom near the shore, they
noticed that the marl was no longer white - it was almost black from the 
thousands of crayfish that had come out to hunt.
They are edible, but not tasty. And it seems such a pity to boil to 
redness such a tiny creature, especially if they are in decline (or even 
if they're not in decline.) On the Continent, freshwater crayfish are 
much bigger and at one time, were, and still may be, considered a great 
delicacy, perhaps especially in Poland.

Crayfish Pics


Bye

Next month: Don't know, please send me some articles and news...