The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR) has recently produced a poster that highlights 30 of the state’s 97 species of crayfish. The poster is available to the public for free at any Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division (WFF) Fisheries Section district office. For contact information, visit www.outdooralabama.com/contact and click on “District Fisheries Offices.”
The poster is also available by mail. To order, send a check for $3 to cover postage to ADCNR, 64 N. Union St., Suite 106, Montgomery, Ala., 36130. Please make the check out to ADCNR.
“The poster makes an excellent classroom resource for teachers across the state,” said Doug Darr, WFF Aquatic Education Coordinator. “From the eight-inch Tennessee bottlebrush, the state’s largest crayfish, to the smallest, the one-inch least crayfish, the poster depicts the diversity of size and color within Alabama’s crayfish population.”
As one of the most biologically diverse states in the country, Alabama leads the nation in total number of freshwater fish, mussel, snail and crayfish species. There are approximately 400 crayfish species in North America. To date, 97 species of crayfish are known to occur in the state.
Crayfish thrive in Alabama thanks, in part, to the state’s abundant freshwater habitat. They can be found in streams, swamps, roadside ditches, caves and even in underground burrows. Crayfish may be vegetarians, scavengers, predators or serve as food for other animals, making them an important part Alabama’s freshwater habitats.
Since 2013, surveys of Alabama’s waterways have led to the discovery of 14 previously unknown crayfish species.
For more information about the importance of healthy aquatic ecosystems, visit outdooralabama.com.
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR) promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s natural resources through four divisions: Marine Resources, State Parks, State Lands, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. To learn more about ADCNR, visit www.outdooralabama.com.