Action: Procambarus crayfish control: Trapping and removal
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- One controlled, replicated study in Italy found that baiting traps with food (tinned meat) trapped the most red swamp crayfish compared to the use of male and female pheromones or the control (no bait). Over half of all crayfish caught were found in traps baited with food.
Traps are commercially available for crayfish capture. They are typically baited with food items and set overnight, after which crayfish are disposed of in a humane way. A number of studies have investigated the use of trapping to control other invasive crayfish species. A replicated study from the UK (Holdich & Black 2007) found that trapping spiny-cheeked crayfish Orconectes limosus was ineffective at managing populations. Another before and after study in Spain (Dana et al. 2010) demonstrated that a combination of trapping, manual removal and electrofishing controlled recruitment of signal crayfish Pacifastacus leniusculus. However, trapping contributed towards only approximately 3% of the total crayfish removed in this Spanish study.
Holdich D. & Black J. (2007). The spiny-cheek crayfish, Orconectes limosus (Rafinesque, 1817) [Crustacea:Decapoda: Cambaridae], digs into the UK. Aquatic Invasions, 2, 1-15.
Dana E.D., López-Santiago J., García-de-Lomas J., García-Ocaña D.M., Gámez V. & Ortega F. (2010). Long-term management of the invasive Pacifastacus leniusculus (Dana, 1852) in a small mountain stream. Aquatic Invasions, 5, 317-322.
Supporting evidence from individual studies
A controlled, replicated study conducted in 2006 in canals in Italy (Aquiloni & Gherardi 2010) found that food-baited traps were successful in capturing red swamp crayfish Procambarus clarkii. Of 282 crayfish caught using different bait types, over half were captured in food-baited traps compared with traps containing male or female crayfish and a control treatment (no bait). A total of 72 traps were set three metres apart and randomly assigned one of four bait treatments: no bait, tinned meat (food), male crayfish, or female crayfish. Bait crayfish were kept inside a wire netting box inside the traps to prevent them from mating with trapped individuals. The traps were checked after two days. The sex of each trapped crayfish was determined.