Southern New England Horseshoe Crabs Threatened

Transmitters to Track Cape Horseshoe Crabs
Horseshoe Crab, Photo/New England Boating, Kendra Sousa

Older than dinosaurs, horseshoe crabs have survived plenty. But human impact may be the threat that could wash them out of the Atlantic, according to an article on

Horseshoe crabs used to be heavily hunted. In recent years, harvest quotas have been put in place to help the crabs. But they are still threatened. Today, these crabs have two big threats looming over their oddly shaped heads. Horseshoe crabs are a popular bait for conch and eel fishermen, and they are wanted for their blood. Horseshoe crab blood is used for biomedical research and product manufacturing involving the detection of gram-negative bacteria, which can be harmful to humans.

Read about threats to southern New England’s horseshoe crab population.