Chesapeake horseshoe crabs crawl back

Every spring, John Rodenhausen looks forward to seeing a few horseshoe crabs on the beach at the Chesapeake Bay Foundation’s headquarters outside Annapolis.

This year, Rodenhausen said, thousands of the prehistoric-looking creatures, which resemble spiders more than crabs, were mating on the Annapolis beach in late May. As is their wont, the smaller males attached to the larger female, sometimes four to five at a time — one large carapace surrounded by smaller ones, like points on a star.

“It blew us all away,” said Rodenhausen, the foundation’s Maryland development director. “You’ll always see a few, and you might see a dozen, but we saw thousands. And it wasn’t even a full moon.”

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Ashley Herriman

Ashley Herriman is the online editor for National Fisherman.

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