Procambarus crayfish control: Remove the crayfish by electrofishing
Overall effectiveness category No evidence found (no assessment)
Number of studies: 0
Background information and definitions
Electric currents are often used for the management of freshwater fishes. Typically the fish are stunned and removed by nets. Crayfish are also susceptible to electric shocks. A study in the UK of a different species of invasive crayfish, the signal crayfish found that high intensity electric (96 kW, direct current 1600 V, 57.8 A, at 7 Hz) shocks delivered repeatedly via electrode tapes to two sections of stream resulted in crayfish mortality of 86-97% (Peay et al. 2014). All sizes of crayfish were affected, but small individuals (<30 mm carapace length) were more susceptible. Some crayfish survived in the stony banks. In addition, a review proposed that passing an electric current through water, using modified electrofishing gear, could kill the red swamp crayfish Procambarus clarkia (Stebbing et al. 2012). Employing standard electrofishing methods (with a boat-mounted electrode) stuns crayfish in open water which can then be collected by hand. Those in burrows will survive. A modified version of this equipment was developed for crayfish with a much higher current (96kW instead of 0.5kW of the normal set up, Stebbing et al. 2012). Electrofishing comes with inherent risks to the user and can only be safely conducted during summer months, in shallow, clear water.
Peay S., Dunn A.M., Kunin W.E., McKimm R. & Harrod C. (2014) A method test of the use of electric shock treatment to control invasive signal crayfish in streams Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems DOI: 10.1002/aqc.2541.
Stebbing P.D., Longshaw M., Taylor N., Norman R., Lintott R., Pearce F. & Scott A. (2012) Review of methods for the control of invasive crayfish in Great Britain. CEFAS. Contract C5471 final report. 105 pp.