Martint's picture

Crayfish predator

Observed: 4th October 2011 By: Martint
DSCN3328 1

Thornton Beck, a tributary of the River Nidd, flows through my garden near Harrogate and supports a thriving population of American crayfish. I came across this smaller specimen on the rocks and wondred who attacked it. I discount herons, since it was within 3 metres of the kitchen window and was partly sheltered by overhanging vegetation - the hole in the carapace is too neat. There are reports of otter (?) and mink in the area - or was it simply rats?

Species interactions

No interactions present.


Masked Marvel's picture

Not sure what killed the

Not sure what killed the crayfish but if you move this to the mammals section you might be more likely to get an ID. I think a grass snake could possibly tackle a crayfish but it would probably swallow it whole.

the naturalist man's picture

Crayfish killer

I'm sorry this one will have to remain a mystery, there is just not enough to go on. It could be just about any one the culprits you mention, even the heron; they are all found on the Nidd.

Herons will hunt at dawn and dusk, even in the dark so it could easily have fed on the crayfish whilst you slept, hence would not of been bothered about coming so close. Also I know someone who has a garden pond 'plagued' by heron which is only a few metres from their French windows. Though they moan a lot about loosing fish to the heron I know they spend hours watching them!

Graham Banwell

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